Amarca (WeLoveBrands) is the dream of two women, Patrícia Cardoso and Teresa Coelho. We are passionate about communication and wish to help the world to communicate better trough Design carefully thought down to the smallest detail. But for this dream to come true, we both made our ways until we met.
I’m Patrícia and graduated in economics from the University of Algarve, in 2005, and the discipline that triggered me was Marketing.
After University, my first job was in an accounting office, Fiducial in Faro, and it took me about 6 months to realize that I wasn't going to do be an accountant for the rest of my life. Then I started looking for another opportunity, and got a professional internship as an assistant in the financial department, at a local design consultancy agency, Atelier do Sul. I’ve learned a tremendous amount of skills in financial, costs, HR management, among others. But in 2011, after having my first child and due to the restructuring of the company, I was transferred to the production department. Where I acquired skills in terms of managing production. I had direct contact with digital printing companies, offset and large format suppliers, signage and the production team. However, at some point, I felt that I stopped growing and that the chances of evolution were slim and that was when I went back to look for a new growth opportunity.
And, once again I changed jobs, this time to a printing company well known in Albufeira, Litogratis, where I acquired knowledge about digital and offset printing, learned about paper, formats, types of printing and finishing possibilities.
It was also at Litográfis that I started my journey at BNI - Business Networking International, at that time I was the first member of the BNI Desafio, in a group of entrepreneurs that met at 6:45 in the morning. This way of doing business was new in the Algarve, so for many people, it was a crazy move. For me although it was difficult to manage at the time, I can say that I learned a lot, I met exceptional people and that I do not regret the effort, just the opposite.
I was always aware of what I did not want for my life so one year later, I left BNI and shortly after, already pregnant with my second child, I left my job in Litográfis. For some a bold move, for me, it was the search for new opportunities. Shortly after, I started to provide services to Crochet, a communication & design company recently created at the time in Portimão, and I returned to BNI Desafio where I was proudly president.
Four years later, once again without fears, I concluded that I had reached the end of this path. And, again, I decided to leave and start over.
Looking back, I realize that over the years I have been building my brand and that I was drawn along the way and consequently building the person I want to be.
I have worked in some of the best companies in the region, always trying to leave my mark, effort, dedication, dynamism, being a person focused on solutions (problem-solving), to help the client but also in a constant search for personal and professional growth…
I got to a point in my life that I didn't know where to go or what I was going to do…
Meanwhile, as I was making my way, Teresa Coelho was following hers. She graduated in Communication Design at ESAD - Escola Superior de Artes e Design de Matosinhos, having immediately started her career as a freelance designer while teaching Visual and Technological Education at a school in Albufeira. However, she was simultaneously looking for a company where she could work and acquire another level of practical experience, which happened in 1998, the year she starts working at NC & G - Design, Photography e Publicity. Here, she deepened her knowledge and her passion for design, working with people who marked her and helped her shape her professional character. This path ends in 2012, during the real estate crisis.
Despite the difficulties T. always looked for solutions, she restarted her career as a freelancer, building her client portfolio. In parallel, to acquire more skills, T. starts at the University of Évora with a master's degree in graphic design, while attending a course in the audiovisual area at ETIC. At this point, she also takes the Certificate of Pedagogic Aptitude for training.
In 2013, she was invited to teach the discipline of Graphic and Audiovisual Communication at EPGE – Professional School Gil Eanes, where she remained until 2017, never stopping her freelance career. At this school, a friendship with the student Roxana Osman started a friendship that was crucial to the appearance of the Amarca. Considering Roxana's as a student well above average, Teresa gets her an internship at the company where I worked at the time.
In 2017, on a trip to Lisbon visiting a client, Teresa met with Roxana and talked about her willingness to dedicate herself 100% to graphic design and how she needed someone to help her take her business to another level and fulfil the dream of having a company that is different from the others and that stood out for detail and love for design. Roxana replies that she knows the perfect person, highly capable and serious in her area and that she would also be looking for something new at a professional level. Wow, that person was ME.
That same day, Teresa reached out to me. We could say it was a “match made in heaven”, but it was not that easy. I was questioning my future, I wasn't sure about the next steps in my life and Teresa appears out of nowhere ...
We started speaking, and she keeps asking me, from time to time, what was I going to do? If I had decided what to do with my life and she also told me it wasn’t smart to leave my career, as I enjoyed doing my work :). Truth be told she was right, would not make sense to throw away my experience, I loved and love my work deeply.
Gradually our affinity grew, the recognition of my peers (customers, suppliers and friends) who were pushing me to continue my journey and the design of Teresa, which I immediately identified, helped me to have the confidence to move forward. Together with Teresa, joining our passion for design & communication and our desire to be different, for our love for the brand, we dreamed and made Amarca born.
One of our first steps was to return to BNI, this time to Sinergia in Vilamoura. We rented an office in Portimão, furnished the space and started to write a new page of our lives together. If we analyze it well, Amarca is the union of two Identities, two personal brands that have developed and grown over the years. Both me and Teresa did not let circumstances define us, we continued to fight despite the hard paths and this is our brand, which also defines Amarca.
And have you ever thought about what defines you? What are your core values? Our values are reflected in the values of our companies, and consequently in what we contribute to our clients' companies and the world. What is your brand? What do you leave wherever they go?
Wow - what a story. I'm definitely looking forward to meeting you tomorrow afternoon.
Likewise. See you tomorrow.