World-leading fashion store 'Zara' was nearly called 'Zorba'

World leading fashion store 'Zara' was nearly called 'Zorba'

The multi-billion pound clothing chain was started by a tailor named Amancio Ortega in A Coruña Galicia, Spain, in 1975. 

And initially, he gave it a completely different name at its birth.

Excited by his new project, Ortega proudly named it Zorba after the classic 1964 film Zorba the Greek. Still, to his dismay, he soon discovered that a bar with the same name was situated just two blocks away.

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World-leading fashion store 'Zara' was nearly called 'Zorba' 1

Despite being stuck with the moulds for the original name he had chosen, a quick fiddle with the letters spelled out the name Zara proved an economic success – and the rest is history. 

Legend has it the extra 'a' came from an additional set of letters that had already been moulded for the company.

US social forum Quora concurs with this theory, adding that the bar owner even tracked down Ortega. 

One user explained: 'In 1975, the brand's founder, Amancio Ortega Gaona, opened a small store selling housecoats and robes in north-western Spain. Ortega called the store Zorba, after the film Zorba the Greek.

'However, Zorba the Greek was a pretty popular film, as there was a bar with the same name two blocks away. 

'The bar owner came over to Ortega's clothes shop to tell him that having two Zorbas in the same town would be too confusing.'

'Ortega had already made the moulds for the letters in the sign, so he simply rearranged them to see what other names he could find. And as you can likely guess, he came up with the name Zara, and the rest is history!'

Zara has nearly 3000 stores worldwide.

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