The D’Amelio family is leveraging their social media success to build an empire. With help from Marc and Heidi, the sisters Charli and Dixie have secured brand deals and sponsorships as well as established VC fund 444 Capital. This past fall, they announced plans for fashion, beauty, lifestyle businesses – the first of which is a women’s footwear line launching May 2023 (as confirmed by Marc on a panel at CES Las Vegas).
At the Variety Entertainment Summit on Friday, Marc’s involvement in the D’Amelio family empire was revealed. He fielded questions about upcoming branded products and other ventures, impressing daughter Dixie who praised his business-savvy: “Charli and I always went to my dad for advice on deals and even long-term friendships; trusting him has been the best thing for both of our careers.”
D’Amelio Brands was given a $6 million boost at launch, with Richard Rosenblatt (Autograph co-chairman and Whip Media co-founder/CEO) as investor and co-founder. Other investors include Apple SVP Eddy Cue, Lions Gate CEO Jon Feltheimer, Fanatics CEO Michael Rubin, Clothia CEO Elena Silenok–plus United Talent Agency (repping the D’Amelios).
At the end of January, Marc announced the company’s inaugural board meeting.
At CES, Marc described merchandise as “low-hanging fruit” and noted that when the new products launch, the family will own all their intellectual property.
He declared, “No need to reinvent the wheel; we observed other entrepreneurs and creators claiming full ownership of their brands. Thus, D’Amelio Brands was founded to identify concepts and products that excite us for incubation with our investors. We own them all — 100%!”
The D’Amelio family are launching their own footwear company in May 2023, and they have already progressed far with the design process. Attending “almost every meeting” together, they’re on track to make the original end-of-2022 launch date.
In a brief interview, Marc discussed his background in fashion; having been an independent rep and owning a showroom in New York. He also highlighted Lauren DiCicco as the head designer of their new footwear brand, who formerly worked for Jessica Simpson Footwear and is from Connecticut, like the family. His career took another direction when his daughters found fame.
Despite plans to launch a D’Amelio empire, Marc confirmed their family’s commitment to doing brand sponsorship deals with third parties via their agents at UTA. To date, the sisters have worked with Dunkin’, Sabra hummus and Hollister on a clothing line.
Marc said the goal of D’Amelio Brands was to ensure financial security beyond content creation for the family.
“Content-creation and endorsement deals can make you feel like a hamster on a wheel,” he said. “It’s not the same as being in movies; it’s ‘what deal will come next?’ Our goal is to create businesses that are self-sustaining without us—we just plant the seed.”
The D’Amelio family is keeping busy with various projects, such as Dixie’s music which was featured on “Gossip Girl”. They are also gearing up for the third season of their reality show on Hulu, brokered by UTA.
Dixie weighed up the pros and cons of doing the series, eventually deciding that its potential to raise mental health awareness around social media fame made it worthwhile.
“Filming videos for TikTok and talking about mental health on the show has been amazing,” said Dixie. “The best part is being able to connect with people who understand what it’s like — not just how it affects our mental health, but also having that shared connection.”