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Aslaug Magnusdottir

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Aslaug Magnusdottir is an Icelandic businesswoman, entrepreneur, and influential figure in the fashion industry. She is the co-founder of Mora Operandi, an online luxury fashion retailer that allows consumers to pre-order looks straight from the runway. Often referred to as “fashion’s fairy godmother” and named one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company, Magnusdottir began her corporate career in Iceland working as a tax attorney for Deloitte.

Once she completed her graduate studies, she moved to London and held a position as the Engagement Manager at McKinsey & Company. Magnusdottir was first introduced to the fashion industry during college when she was asked to help run a modeling agency. Soon thereafter she was hired by Baugur Group, an investment company that specialized in the fashion and retail industries.

In 2007, Magnusdottir co-founded her first company - TSM Capital - together with former Bloomingdales CEO, Marvin Traub. Just two years later Magnusdottir came up with the idea for Moda Operandi, which was a concept that allowed customers to buy looks immediately following runway shows. Together with Lauren Santo Domingo, Magnusdottir launched Moda Operandi. After 4 years with the company - where she raised more than $36 million from venture capital firms - Magnusdottir left the company.

In 2013, she founded Tinker Tailor, a concept that allows consumers to customize designer clothing or even design their own garments. In 2015, Tinker Tailor closed its doors.

Sources used to write this entrepreneur’s profile include the entrepreneur’s personal LinkedIn profile, a September 2014 article in the Observer: Style & Design, and an August 2015 interview with Fast Company.

Companies and Investments

Moda Operandi, Inc. (CEO & Co-Founder), Tinker Tailor (CEO & Co-Founder), Gilt Groupe (VP Premium Products and Services), TSM Capital (Co-Founder & Managing Director), Marvin Traub Associates (Vice President)

Lessons Learned

When launching a new business or venture, make sure the timing is right. One of the biggest mistakes people make is misreading the market.

If you are the first of your kind, keep in mind that there are both pros and cons, ups and downs.

Understand that there is a difference between educating customers with a new product or service that they didn’t even know they needed and launching before there is a demand.

Don’t be afraid to disrupt the industry a little bit. Just because something is new and has never been seen before doesn’t mean there isn’t a place for it. Just be careful and do your research.

Don’t underestimate how important focus is.

Inspiring Quotes

Alsaug Magnusdottir's Quotes

Each individual garment has its own customizations based on a collaboration between us and the designer. We say what we think our woman wants and they say, ‘this is what we think we can do with our production’

Alsaug Magnusdottir

It’s great to be a first mover if you manage to pull it off.

Alsaug Magnusdottir

Customization is really the next big movement in fashion

Alsaug Magnusdottir

Influential Books