Ruehl (also known as Ruehl 925) is the most recent venture of Abercrombie and Fitch, the American retailer. As of July 2005, the concept consisted of five U.S. locations, with plans to expand to 300 locations. Ruehl stores sell merchandise at prices 25-35% higher than the company's other concepts, and target a more affluent consumer in a higher age group. The stores themselves follow the unbranded-brand approach of the company's Hollister concept; signage is limited, the locations are not overtly branded, and interior spaces are dark and complex (ref. Style, New York Times). Market analysts view Abercrombie and Fitch's Ruehl launch as part of a companywide strategy to retain market share. According to A&F press releases, with Hollister designate for the 14-18 year old audience, and Abercrombie targeted for 18-22 year olds, the company had no prior concept to service the 22-30 market. Ruehl is designed primarily to keep consumers after they outgrow one concept, and to attract a new client base not enticed by Hollister and A&F items. Analysts also note that at around 80 points a share and with a 27 point low in October 2004, the company's stock price might be artificially high, and prone to collapse if it cannot meet growth projections. Regarding Ruehl's marketing, advertising has been limited, relying mainly on word-of-mouth and targeted openings. It is worth noting that the brand is entirely fictional. Several retail concepts provide a company timeline or informal history to establish an emotional link to consumers; Abercrombie and Fitch was originally a sporting goods supplier in New York, and when their name was purchased to create the apparel concept, a suitable image was crafted from the wreckage of the defunct store. Williams-Sonoma, also, uses heavy referencing of its founder to convey history and stability. With Ruehl, such methods are employed; however, these footnotes are corporate mythology. There is no record of the Ruehl family business in New York, and even the address, 925 Greenwich Street, is an invention (Greenwich Street ends in the mid-800s.) Analysts have speculated that these oversights may backfire, disillusioning consumers, but the company has a very good prognosis for growth and well-researched clients are rare.
A Ruehl opened up on Madison Avenue, and I went to buy a new pair of jeans, though I can't figure out how to pronounce their name.
(Being a proper noun, there's really no need for a Ruehl example.)