As business partners, Morgaine McGee and Katherine Zabloudil run The Vertical Collective. Together they have over 30 years of experience leading design, merchandising, development, manufacturing and distribution initiatives for global brands and retailers. Their product focus includes apparel, accessories, handbags, footwear, home and lifestyle categories.

Q: Why did you choose your present industry at this time?

We see brands and retailers becoming more tech-driven while also needing to get product into consumers hands faster in order to stay relevant - however, this need has not been addressed in the supply chain side of either development or manufacturing. We started The Vertical Collective to address this void.

Q: What is the best/worst moment you can remember in your career?

Morgaine: Best career moment was being asked at age 25 by the sourcing company I was working with in NY if I would be willing to transfer to Hong Kong to take the company vertical. 14 years later I’m still here!

Katherine: Best career moment was stepping from finance into fashion and making the leap to NY to take an entry-level production role at Kate Spade.

Q: Who is your role model or hero?

Natalie Massenet.

Q: Tell us about the exact moment you came up with your business idea. How did you decide to go ahead with that one, instead of others?

It really came together organically in 2015. We have been friends and colleagues for many years and have seen so many voids in the industry that we could fill. When we started talking about how we could make an impact, it truly just came together.  

Q: What is your favorite book?

The Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand.

Q: Do you use any specific method or system to run daily operations of your business?

Caffeine and constant communication with each other.

Give yourself a break once in a while and don't always be so hard on yourself - whether personally or in business.  

~ Morgaine McGee, Co-founder | Co-CEO at The Vertical Collective

Q: Looking back - if you could advise a younger version of yourself to do something different - what would it be?

Give yourself a break once in a while and don't always be so hard on yourself - whether personally or in business.