Vineyard Vines

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Vineyard Vines
Clothing
Founder Ian and Shep Murray
Headquarters Stamford, Connecticut, USA
Number of locations
40 Stores, 8 Outlets, 97 Retailers
Products Clothing and accessories
Owner Ian and Shep Murray
Slogan Every day should feel this good
Website Vineyard Vines

Vineyard Vines is an American clothing and accessory retailer founded in 1998 near Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts, by brothers Shep and Ian Murray. The brand started with ties, but has since incorporated hats, belts, shirts, shorts, bags for men, women, and children, and even turbans and has grown to a collection of retail stores and outlets across the United States. Their clothing is considered preppy, a description also used by the company itself on its website.[1]

History[edit]

Ian and Shep Murray grew up in Connecticut and spent their summers on Martha's Vineyard. The brothers originally held jobs in New York City, but soon grew tired of the corporate lifestyle. Ian claims the duo “started making neckties so [they] didn’t have to wear them.” The brothers sold their neckties during summer weekends on Martha's Vineyard, selling from their boat or Jeep rather than a storefront. Initially, they offered four different styles of ties. When they sold 800 ties on a single weekend in July, Shep and Ian decided to quit their jobs to focus on the business. The Murray brothers claim that the business was founded through a philosophy of "living the good life." Ian states, "The original idea was to take 'The Good Life' to work with us, then not to have to go into the city every day. We soon realized that if we sold enough in a day we could pay rent, then it was enough we could buy a boat." The company's startup capital was raised from the brothers' accrued credit card debt; Vineyard Vines still is owned outright by the two Murray brothers.

Expansion[edit]

Since the summer of 1998, the Vineyard Vines company has expanded nationally, particularly along the East Coast. Vineyard Vines has opened numerous company, outlet, and retail stores. In addition to these traditional channels, Vineyard Vines has expanded its sales to online shoppers. The company also manufactures licensed college apparel which is sold primarily through campus stores. Vineyard Vines was placed on Inc. magazine's list of the 5000 fastest-growing businesses in the U.S. in 2007. Between 2004 and 2007, the relatively new company's revenue tripled. [2]

Marketing[edit]

Much of Vineyard Vines' success has stemmed from brand marketing. The company's pink whale logo is emblazoned on a majority of its products. Vineyard Vines' popularity among college students in the U.S. has increased in recent years, a trend the company encourages with their "Whale Reps" program. Similar to other apparel companies' student ambassador programs, "Whale Reps" are students who are recruited to promote Vineyard Vines on their college campuses. These campus representatives are eligible to buy Vineyard Vines clothing at special discounted prices, among other incentives. Free accessories and clothing are distributed with the intention of organically establishing the company's brand. This business model is aimed to gather a young following that will remain loyal to the brand for decades. Vineyard Vines also works in conjunction with the National Football League, the National Hockey League, with Major League Baseball, and numerous colleges and universities. The company creates ties and shirts that incorporate the individual team logos in a similar fashion to their college logo clothing. In 2008, Vineyard Vines struck deals with these two organizations. Vineyard Vines also gained notoriety in recent presidential elections. In 2004, Senator John Kerry sported a Vineyard Vines donkey tie that was distributed throughout his campaign staff. President George W. Bush also had a line of campaign ties from Vineyard Vines. In 2008, President Barack Obama was presented with a version of the tie which had an 'O' on the tail. Since then, the company has produced a line of donkey, elephant, and American flag ties.

Products[edit]

Vineyard Vines' line of clothing and accessories is often compared to those of Polo Ralph Lauren, Brooks Brothers and J. Crew. The company began selling clothing online and in boutiques in 2005. After its initial success with neckties, Vineyard Vines expanded its offerings to other men's clothing, then added women's totes and eventually clothing and accessories for men, women, and children. The company specializes in hats, shirts, shorts, pants, sweaters, dresses, ties, jackets, and bags. Vineyard vines was the 2008 All-Star Awards winner by "Apparel Magazine" for outstanding achievements in the apparel industry.

Stores[edit]

The first stores were opened in Northeastern locations associated with the sea such as Cape Cod. However, the company has expanded to 48 stores as well as 8 outlet locations. Every store is stylized with a nautical theme. There are currently locations in Alabama, Connecticut, California, Delaware, Georgia, Florida, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Ohio, South Carolina, and Washington, D.C. Vineyard Vines also sells licensed college apparel through the official campus stores of Ole Miss, Mississippi State, Vanderbilt University, and other colleges and universities.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Maidenberg, Micah (27 May 2014). "Prepster clothing chain expands in Mag Mile move". Chicago Real Estate Daily (Crain's Chicago Business). Retrieved 5 May 2015. 
  2. ^ "Vineyard Vines". Inc. 5000. Inc. Retrieved 5 May 2015. 

External links[edit]

Official website