The Running Company, based in Indianapolis, said it is renaming its stores BlueMile, effective Nov. 18.
The new name is designed to help the company grow beyond the local market, create new jobs and be more welcoming to casual runners and walkers. BlueMile stores sell specialty running and walking footwear, apparel and accessories.
All five of the retailer's locations will operate under the new name. There are four BlueMile stores in the Indianapolis area and one in Louisville, Ky.
“We consistently heard that people were intimidated by our former name, The Running Company, and they were reluctant to come into our stores because they don't consider themselves to be serious runners,” said Ashley Johnson, a company co-owner. “We do have a core customer base of people who regularly participate in running events, but we have many more who are less-serious runners or walkers who are working to lose weight or just stay fit.”
The new BlueMile name and accompanying logo are meant to describe and illustrate the best part of a runner or walker's fitness experience.
” BlueMile embodies the spirit of who we are and what we do,” Johnson said. “We help people feel more confident and more comfortable in whatever level of exercise or fitness they choose.”
Co-owner Bob Kennedy added that the firm's former name limited the company's growth potential, both in customers and in new markets. There are as many as 50 running specialty stores throughout the country that use the words running company as part of their names. The unique new name will make it easier for the company to set itself apart from competitors.
“While our store experience is very welcoming and inclusive, our former name seemed exclusive,” Kennedy said. “We believe our new identity better reflects our ability to help customers find the best shoe for them and in turn help us as we continue to grow our business.”
The company engaged Indianapolis marketing communications agency Hetrick to help develop and implement the name and visual identity. A new website, www.bluemile.com, will also launch Nov. 18.
The new identity coincides with the company's 10th anniversary and the recent opening of its first store outside of the Indianapolis market in Louisville.