What do you do when you are a young, beautiful girl in her early 20s with a ton of ambition? You most likely date a footballer or become a social media star. Not the 27-year-old Ollia Tzarina, who faked her entire identity to gain trust with the London based 63-year-old angel investor back in 2015, Ollia was just 22 years old, a drop out from her university ( she left after two years to go and work for Vogue magazine ) and had a ton of ambition. We got contacted by the independent London based investor who wanted to stay anonymous. ‘ She contacted me via the social network TheSmallWorld which was then popular with the elite group of investors, and told me she had a concept for a niche fashion brand and wanted Cara Delevingne to be her model who was at the time charging 50-100.000 euros for a campaign, she told me she was 25 years old and working at a private investment bank.
She sounded very hungry for success and me as an entrepreneur, I like that in young people. She came to my office but as soon as I started asking her business-related questions someone supposedly working at the bank would know the answers for, she knew absolutely nothing, she had no idea what I was talking about but what she had were determination and vision.
I knew she would get there one day, but I was not ready to risk my money on someone who was so clueless. She looked like a big-eyed baby deer seating there looking at me, it was cute and I told her to go back and get more experience. In 2017 she sent me an email showing me all the press clippings from her brand Tzarina By Ollia with all the superstars in it and billboards all over Los Angeles with Rita Ora wearing the brand.
She said her father gave her the start-up capital and it paid off. I could sense the smirk on her face and could just imagine her laughing saying ‘ I told you so you old fart !’ With Ollia it is the case of hardcore determination, long term vision and the ability to be seen far less intelligent then she really is. Her motto should be ‘ pretend to be stupid to catch the stupid ‘.
I am sure nobody from her peers would ever imagine that a London party girl was planning to conquer the world, sending numerous messages to the investors, lying to be older so we trust her more, attending numerous conferences to learn about fashion and business in general. Even when I didn’t give her the money because I felt she is way younger then she was claiming, even though she showed me a scan of her passport which I now know was photoshopped I could tell it was not a matter of ‘if’ she makes it, it was a matter of ‘when’.
At the end of the day, I am not upset she lied about her age, degree and work experience, being a young and a very beautiful woman is not easy, you are not taken seriously most of the times. I know it as I am a prime example of that, all I wanted was to take her to dinners and spend time with her. Not talk business and sharing my ten million investment fund for young talents. ‘