Embracing Malta's distinct passion for quality.

Exclusive Interview with Diane Izzo - one of Malta's foremost entrepreneurs and businesswomen.

Diane Izzo is one of Malta’s foremost entrepreneurs and business women she along with her and husband Karl Izzo own and operate DIZZ Group and the multitude of brands that fall under its banner. With brands such as ‘Paul and Shark’, ‘Trussardi’ and ‘Guess?’ under its banner, the group focuses on the importing and retailing of high end fashion wear and has recently expanded outside its immediate business area to operate ‘Pascucci’ a cafeteria franchise.


Here at Temple we were delighted to have the opportunity to sit down with Mrs. Izzo and discuss what has led to her remarkable success, her hopes for the future and her inspirations.

Temple

The brands that fall under the banner of DIZZ Group all come from a variety of styles and qualities, is there anything in mind that binds them together?

Diane

The easiest grouping to place the brands under is that they are all Italian, I have always personally been in love with the ‘Italian’ style. I feel there is something particularly elegant about the way in which Italian designers and manufactures approach their clothing. They often the setter of modern trends and approaches to fashion and irrelevant of the season, they always maintain its glamorous appeal. Our brands have a broad approach to what they offer, and some fall under the category of ‘Fast Fashion’ and actively keep themselves up to date with even the smallest changes in style and approach. Others have the classic and traditional elegance of true style, and maintain this with amazing consistency, there are subtle updates over the years but essentially their approach is maintained. In effect they all have strong fashion routes and an excellent international recognition and appeal.

Temple

What attracted you to these brands in particular?

Diane

To my eye particularly, they all offer a certain glamour, and when choosing who we do business with it was important for us to ensure that there was a balance between what we offer to Men, Women and Children, they all need clothes after all and is you miss one group the you miss out on a significant proportion of the fashion market, also we had to provide different styles and approaches available to all three groups. However, from a more practical and business oriented stand point, each brand is a franchise and we enjoy the business models they offer to their partners like us.


Temple

What would you say is the aspect that make Malta such a lively environment, how do you tap into this for your work?

Diane

While our islands are evidently small, there is an evident passion for quality is they style and approach of today’s generation. They enjoy dressing well and looking good, with this has come as drive and desire to redefine the islands as a destination and what we offer, provide and represent.

Temple

Is there a particular international designer that means a great deal to you?

Diane

I am often asked this and there is no simple, easy answer. I find that fashion brands and their designers in particular define themselves by their manners and approaches. When they release a new range, line or their latest seasonal update it is a window into their mind and how they operate. I find this particularly interesting due to the continual advances they achieve, sometime one designer stands out and on a different occasion, another. This obviously leads to my enjoyment in experimenting with the clothing I wear, combining styles from across the ranges on offer. Whether the summer, winter or mid-season, if find that exploring and discovering what is available is a constant joy.

Temple

Is there a particular event in the Maltese cultural calendar that you find particularly inspirational of definitively Maltese?

Diane

While I do enjoy the traditional festas and celebrations around Malta, I would have to say that ‘Malta Fashion Week’ is certainly my annual highlight, it is after all in my field. It has been wonderful to see its developments and growth from year to year, gradually attracting more (well deserved) international interest and coverage, the exhibitions and collections are always exciting. Though I feel what it truly shows is the diverse array of incredible talent we have around and how this is being harnessed in exciting ways. Also, I really do enjoy many events that takes place in our capital city of Valletta, there is something magical about the city and how lends itself to many a celebrations or activities

Temple

What is your favourite place on the islands, why so?

Diane

Despite the islands being small, there is an incredible amount to discover even for those of us that have lived here all our lives. The very best way to do this is in my opinion by jumping on a boat during a summer evening and sailing to secluded bay, there enjoying the company of friends and family with good food and a nice bottle of wine. Sometimes if you find the right place on the right occasion it can feel as if you are discovering a place for the very first time. It is a wonderful way to enjoy the islands.

Temple

What advice would you give to any young entrepreneur looking to follow a similar career path as yours?

Diane

To any entrepreneur the advice is simple, work hard, keep your feet on the ground and always ensure that you have you goal in mind, don’t get distracted from it. Those who are planning to work in fashion have a hard but exciting path ahead of them, there are so many areas of expertise to which they can lend their talents and passion, though completion is fierce so one has to be on the ball at all times.


Temple

To a greater degree as you are at liberty to discuss, what are your plans for the future?

Diane

Our groups growth during 2016 was huge and this has continued right into 2017, we do positively believe that this will continue well into the future. Partially this is due to the €8 million bond issue we had last year and the magnificent support this has enable us to actively pursue future project, what these might be, well, just at the moment we are keeping them to ourselves. Though we are getting very excited about their potential.

Temple

When you do have the opportunity for a little down time, what do you enjoy doing? Is there anything in particular that you would perhaps like to try?

Diane

Travelling is truly a great passion of mine and my husband’s we truly do look forward to the holidays we manage to fit into our rather packed schedule. The world is a big place and while there are many places I would love to discover or explore it is sometimes difficult to choose, but this is only good and exciting. We also love to meet friends and travel together, it always greatly lends to the sense of adventure.


Images: Supplied by DIZZ Group.

Published in TEMPLE Magazine Issue 2 2017/18

Copyright 2017/18 - Temple Concierge Ltd

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