Chris Burch is one of those rare breed people you hear stories about, starting his $1 billion-plus empire in his early college years when he and his brother would buy $10 girl’s preppy sweaters and then sell them door-to-door at Ithaca College for $15 each.
His daytime job now is CEO and founder of Burch Creative Capital allowing him to make investments in what he knows and what interests him.His knowledge of the fashion industry started with those sweaters. He built and invested in highly successful fashion lines, though he’s the first to admit there were a few stumbles for him to learn new lessons along the way.
Two of his adult daughters started a fashion line “Trademark” and he’s invested in that business, as well as E.D., a line created by another creative, Ellen DeGeneres. Other investments include Aliph, owners of Jawbone – that makes Bluetooth fitness trackers, speakers, and headsets; Poppin – an office supply manufacturer, and Nihiwatu Resort in Indonesia. Personally, he also owns homes and vacation properties in several locations.
In his early years, Christopher Burch struggled in scholastic efforts showing measurable problems with keeping focused. After school during his teen years, he worked with his father during the summer at construction. It wasn’t long before he realized there must be an easier way to earn a dollar. Ultimately that led to his sweater-selling enterprise, which grew into his first fashion company, Eagle Eye – later sold to Swire Group in 1998 and valued at $60 million.
For the forty or so years since then, Chris Burch has invested in more than 50 companies and amassed his personal fortune valued at over $1 billion. But when asked why he invests in companies, his answer is that it’s all about the people. He has a conversation about what they care about most, family, passions, and their core values. From there he looks for the ideas that will benefit others as well as himself.
He is single, has six children from two marriages and outside of the business world, the things he enjoys are fishing, sailing, collecting minerals, and spending treasured moments with his children.
Chris Burch is an entrepreneur and marketing legend – and someone to emulate and model oneself after.