Mary Portas is founder and chief creative officer of Portas.

Mary is a regular contributor to national media and a key note speaker on retail, consumerism and culture.

Recent bookings include: Melbourne Fashion Week, FT Property Summit, Cambridge University, The British Library, Oxford Union and UK Chamber of Commerce. Mary has also spoken at numerous internal conferences and events too. Recent highlights include HSBC, Pinterest, Natwest, ŠKODA and Visa.

If you’d like to book Mary to talk at your event or business, please email contact@portasagency.com with the subject ‘Mary Portas Speaking Opportunity.’

Mary Portas, biography

Before Mary founded Portas a little over twenty years ago, she made an indelible mark on British retail. Her career started at Harrods and Topshop before Mary made her name in retail as the Creative Director of Harvey Nichols. Here, Mary was on the board by her early thirties and worked hard to transform the department store into London’s sexiest fashion destination.

Mary is known to the nation as Mary Queen of Shops from the award-winning TV series for the BBC.

Mary has published three books, advised the Government on the future of High Streets with a report created by Portas, launched her own fashion label as well as kickstarting the return of British manufacturing with her brand Kinky Knickers.  

Mary’s proudest achievement to date is the creation of Mary’s Living and Giving shops for Save The Children. Currently the most profitable charity shops in the UK, she has opened 26 and counting and has raised over £23 million to date. 

Work Like a Woman is Mary’s latest book and a manifesto set to change workplace culture. Internally at Portas it’s called POP culture. You can order Work Like a Woman here and the podcast of the same title, co-hosted with Portas’ Culture Director Emily Bryce-Perkins can be downloaded here.

Work Like a Woman/ POP culture

5 years ago, we rebuilt our agency around the values that matter most to us as people. Internally, we call it our POP culture. To read our managing director Caireen Wackett’s take on it, head to The Drum.

Externally we call it Work Like a Woman and it all started with Mary…

‘The values that mean the most to me are collaboration, empathy, instinct, kindness and trust. Now, these values aren’t always associated with leadership or winning, but they are values which made every one of us feel good. Work Like a Woman is my manifesto for change. In it I share what I’ve learned, and am still learning, to change the way you work. I challenge everyone, women and men – to make the way we work better, where ever that is, and what ever you’re doing. It’s a change that will see female energy and power as the most valuable currency in today’s new world of work. Change only happens when we come together. So it’s time to create an unstoppable force to make it happen. It’s time to #WorkLikeAWoman’

- Mary Portas, founder and chief creative officer, Portas

Order the book here.

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