Umit Benan was born to Turkish parents in 1980 in Stuttgart, Germany. He moved to Istanbul when he was 2 years old and lived there until he was 15, dividing his time between school and work at his family’s textile company.
After graduating from high school in Lugano, Switzerland in 1998, he moved to Boston to study marketing and public relations at college. During his time in the United States he decided to become a fashion designer and spent summers in Milano taking drawing lessons. Upon earning his BA (Hons) degree, he moved to Milano to follow the master’s programme in Fashion Design at Istituto Marangoni.
After gaining experience at Marc Jacobs, under Sophie Théallet at François Nars’ Motu Tane label and with Rifat Ozbek at Pollini, he launched his eponymous label Umit Benan in 2009 and won the first men’s edition of the Who’s On Next competition by Alta Roma with his second collection. Umit Benan became fashion consultant for Trussardi 1911 in 2012, designing for both menswear and womenswear lines. He showed his first menswear collection in Milan for Spring/Summer 2013.