Tiffanyredbank Murmurs about the Broad Street store's demise are greatly exaggerated, says the manager.

Tiffany & Co.'s 14-month old store in downtown Red Bank isn't going anywhere.

So says Vicky Shortland, manager of the the carriage-trade jewelry and tableware retailer, in via a press release issued by Red Bank RiverCenter this morning. The release was headlined, "Tiffany & Co. Happy in Their Red Bank Home."

While acknowledging that Tiffany, "like everyone else, has been affected by the economic downturn this past holiday season," Shortland declares the company "extremely happy to be a part of the Red Bank business district."

Moreover, having survived the Civil War, the Great Depression and two World Wars, Tiffany is "fully prepared to weather this current economic storm and look[s] forward to being part of the Red Bank community for many years to come," Shortland says.

The release, which was accompanied by a photo of Shortland and Mayor Pasquale Menna beaming next to a

jewelry display case, is a rather unusual form of business PR, which mostly avoids commenting on rumors to avoid giving them added life.

Mennashortland2Tiffany manager Vicky Shortland with Mayor Pasquale Menna.

Shortland tells redbankgreen she doesn't consider the release unusual. She says it came about after a discussion she had with Menna in which they agreed that it would be a good idea to "reassure" the public of Tiffany's commitment to the town.

According to RiverCenter executive director Nancy Adams, the move had its roots in "for-rent" signs put up late last year in the windows of one of the two end-cap retail spaces flanking Tiffany. (One store is leased to furniture seller Pierre Deux, which is open for business; the other is vacant.)

Adams tells us Tiffany officials grew concerned around the time of the tree lighting and holiday concert, when thousands of visitors crammed into town in front of the store. Soon afterward, she says, Tiffany "started getting so many calls" from customers and others wondering if the store was planning to move.

"Truthfully, I'm hearing a lot of rumors, too," and not just about Tiffany, says Adams. "It's sort of the environment we're in."

Though it's a publicly traded company, Tiffany doesn't report sales by store, but its Red Bank store is "doing as well as could be expected," Adams says.

The press release is somewhat more upbeat:

"We are very encouraged by the number of existing clients who returned to us to purchase holiday gifts, and the number of new clients who visited our Red Bank store for the first time,' says Vicky Shortland, store manager at Tiffany & Co., 105 Broad St. "A lot of research and planning went into our decision to open in Red Bank and we are excited to be here especially in such a beautiful building," Ms. Shortland continued. 

The full text of the announcement is Download Tiffanys 1 09

RiverCenter, by the way, would issue such an announcement for any member store that asked for one, Adams says.

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