|Founded||July 3, 1998|
|Founder||Shep & Ian Murray (Brothers)|
Number of locations
|70 Stores, 19 Outlets, 97 Retailers|
|Products||Clothing and accessories|
|Owner||Shep and Ian Murray|
Vineyard Vines is an American clothing and accessory retailer founded in 1998 on Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, by brothers Shep and Ian Murray. The brand markets upper market ties, hats, belts, shirts, shorts, swimwear, bags for men, women, and children. It has grown to a collection of retail stores and outlets across the United States. The company's main logo is a pink whale. Their clothing is considered preppy.
Shep and Ian Murray grew up in Greenwich, Connecticut and spent their summers on Martha's Vineyard, where they were introduced to the coastal lifestyle of sailing, fishing, and boating. The two brothers originally held jobs in New York City, but soon grew tired of the corporate lifestyle. Ian claims the duo "traded in [their] business suits for bathing suits" and “started making neckties so [they] didn’t have to wear them.” Before quitting their jobs, the two brothers opened credit cards so they could buy silk and launch Vineyard Vines. The company's entire startup capital was raised from the brothers' accrued credit card debt. Shep and Ian sold their neckties on Martha's Vineyard, selling out of a backpack from their boat or Jeep rather than a storefront. Initially, they offered four different styles of ties. After they sold 800 ties on a single weekend in July, Shep and Ian quickly re-ordered more, paid off their accrued debt, and moved into a new office. The Murray brothers claim that the business was founded through a philosophy of "living the good life," which is reflected by their slogan "Every day should feel this good." Shep Murray claims his goal is to be "a cross between Warren Buffett and Jimmy Buffett" in building the "lifestyle brand" he founded. Vineyard Vines is still owned outright by the two Murray brothers.
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 manufactures licensed NFL and MLB product, which it sells through its retail channels. Vineyard Vines 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.
The first stores were opened in Northeastern locations associated with the sea such as Martha's Vineyard. The first was in Edgartown, Martha's Vineyard, followed by Greenwich, Connecticut. The company has expanded to more than 59 stores as well as 15 outlet locations across the U.S. states.
An age and gender discrimination lawsuit was filed in mid June 2020 in federal court in Connecticut by Anne Dauer, a former senior vice president, also names Shep and Ian Murray, who founded the privately held company and serve as its co-CEOs. “It appears to be an environment increasingly marked by age and gender discrimination and that was by design,” said Seth Rafkin, one of Dauer’s lawyers. “As the complaint states, it was coming from the founders and the president of the company.” 
The complaint details the particulars of Ms. Dauer’s firing and the company culture that she alleges led to it, including a desire by the Murray brothers to replace older, female store employees with younger men. “For example, at company management meetings, Ian Murray repeatedly stated that there were ‘too many middle-aged women around the table’ and that Vineyard Vines needed to bring in younger points of view,” the complaint argues. “The Murray brothers frequently remarked that they needed the retail stores staffed more by young men fitting an all-American ‘college-aged’ look.”
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- "Federal lawsuit alleges ageist, sexist culture at Vineyard Vines". Courant News. Retrieved 23 June 2020.
- "Discrimination Claim Filed in Federal Court Against Vineyard Vines". Vineyard Gazette. Retrieved 29 June 2020.