Escada is an international luxury fashion group founded in Germany by Margaretha and Wolfgang Ley. The name Escada means "staircase" in Portuguese. Escada represents modern elegance, cool glamour and sensuality. Starting in Munich in 1978, the company made a name for itself with distinctive colorful and patterned fashions. Escada Beauté was founded in 1990 and saw the release of its first fragrance, Escada Margaretha Ley, named for one of the company's founders. The fragrance division launched a series of successful fragrances for men and women throughout the 1990s and continuing in the 21st century. Escada fragrances, like the company's fashions, are notable for their bright packaging and unusual bottle shapes.