Born in Taiwan and brought up in Connecticut in the United States, David graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City with a degree in fashion design. He immediately pursued a career in the fashion industry, working for several major American clothing companies. In 1983, he founded the Nautica clothing brand and his men’s outerwear designs, worn by men across the globe, soon won acclaim from international fashion editors and were snapped up by luxury retailers.
Under David’s adept design leadership, Nautica grew from a men’s outerwear company to a billion-dollar lifestyle brand with worldwide distribution, and a shop-in-shop presence in more than 500 global department and specialty fashion stores. The company was acquired by Vanity Fair Corporation in 2003. David subsequently launched a bespoke menswear line offering custom-made men’s clothing and foot-wear. In 2007, he joined Tumi, a global travel accessory brand, where he expanded the company’s platform into the luxury sector and added women’s accessories.
In 2013, together with Investcorp, David Chu acquired Georg Jensen, where he currently serves as Chairman of the board and Creative Director. David lives in New York’s bohemian Nolita neighbourhood. Bianca and Christy, his two daughters, work in art and fashion, respectively, continuing the family’s creative tradition.
David has received the STAR Alumni Award from the American Fashion Institute of Technology. He is also a member of the Council of Fashion Designers of America and has served on its Board of Directors.