September 15, 2006

Handbag maker Vera Bradley expanding

Associated Press
FORT WAYNE, Ind. — The Vera Bradley handbag company plans to expand its retail operations by opening three more stores under its own name.

Stores will open this fall in Phoenix, Fort Wayne and Dayton, Ohio, with Vera Bradley designers selecting the furniture, rugs, paint colors and lighting for the shops, company officials said Thursday.

The Fort Wayne-based company, with annual sales surpassing $100 million, sells its quilted handbags, travel bags and accessories at more than 3,500 U.S. retailers and several international shops.

The new stores will immerse consumers in Vera Bradley, said Kim Mack, the company’s vice president of retail.

“Our consumers will be able to experience the brand within an environment that is interactive, fun, and features the entire range of Vera Bradley products,” she said.
The first new store is to open in October in Phoenix, with that store also supporting the company’s efforts to expand distribution in western states. The stores in Fort Wayne and Dayton are to open by the end of November.

Vera Bradley now has two stores under its name in the suburban Indianapolis communities of Carmel and Plainfield.

The company also said it planned to open more stores next year but did not release any details.

Personally I am not a fan of vera bradley. when I think of the label I get the image of old ladies in an airport. (isnt there vera bradley's in every airport?)