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Simms Fishing Products sold for $192.5 million

Acquired by Vista Outdoor Inc. on Wednesday, July 27, 2022
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Posted at 12:51 PM, Jul 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-28 14:51:26-04

BOZEMAN — Simms Fishing Products was reportedly acquired by Vista Outdoor Inc. on Wednesday for $192.5 million.

In a press release, Vista Outdoor Inc. announced that the gross purchase price includes a net present value of roughly $20 million in future tax benefits.

Vista Outdoor Inc. is the parent company of 39 brands that design, manufacture and market sporting and outdoor products to consumers around the globe. Simms is a premium fishing brand and leading designer, marketer and manufacturer of waders, outerwear, footwear and technical apparel.

Headquartered in Bozeman, Simms was founded in 1980 and later acquired in 1993 by K.C. Walsh, its current Executive Chairman. Walsh's initial vision for Simms was to create the most beloved brand in sport fishing that could marry his passion for fishing with his commitment to fisheries conservation, a news release states.

The company's products are distributed through specialty retail stores, both domestically and internationally, and directly to consumers through

"Simms is the perfect fit for our diversified portfolio of leading, iconic outdoor brands. Simms broadens our core addressable market into the highly attractive fishing category with a premium, innovative brand with significant room for growth. Simms will be a central plank in our long-term growth strategy and will be the anchor of our new fishing platform within Outdoor Products. Fishing, particularly fly fishing where Simms has its roots, is a natural adjacency to our Outdoor Products business and Simms serves an enthusiast consumer demographic that has proven to be largely recession-resistant over time. With a beloved, household name brand like Simms leading the way, we believe that we can create a fishing platform that serves the 55 million+ anglers while delivering long-term growth and value for our shareholders for years to come." - Vista Outdoor CEO Chris Metz

"Equally important, Simms is the right cultural fit for Vista Outdoor and our soon-to-be-formed Outdoor Products company. Expanding conservation and access to natural waters are a core mission for the leaders and employees of Simms, just as they are for Vista Outdoor.," Metz said.

"We share this passion for conserving the places where we hunt, fish, hike and recreate, and we look forward to applying this shared ethic to lands and waters across the globe. After the separation of Vista Outdoor's Sporting and Outdoor Products segments, Simms will enable the Outdoor Products segment to become one of the largest, most diversified outdoor recreation companies in the industry."

According to the statement to the press, Simms has developed the largest guide and ambassador network in the industry and a passionate following among enthusiast and professional anglers, which together drives brand awareness, consumer adoption and innovation across its brand and product categories. Simms supports more than 30 conservation organizations.

"Simms Fishing Products has become the most exciting brand in sport fishing, driving product innovation with our award-winning apparel, outerwear, footwear, and accessories," said Walsh. "Through our high-performance products, we encourage anglers to spend more time on the water—while advocating for healthy fisheries, responsible use, and clean water.

"We are thrilled to be joining the Vista Outdoor family of brands. It is hard to imagine a better partner for Simms. Vista Outdoor is committed to helping us build continued momentum through operational expertise, access to growth capital and their Supply Chain and Digital Centers of Excellence.

"The decision to locate the headquarters of the soon-to-be separated Outdoor Products segment in Bozeman made our decision even easier, as it will reinforce Simms' made-in-Montana heritage and strong commitment to our local community. We are also closely aligned with the Vista Outdoor Foundation's commitment to fish & wildlife conservation and their work with veterans groups. Joining Vista Outdoor is an exciting new era for Simms and very positive for our 170 Bozeman-based employees and the thousands of Simms retailers around the globe," concluded Walsh.

Current Simms Chief Executive Officer Casey Sheahan will continue to lead day-to-day operations of Simms, and K.C. Walsh will continue as a strategic advisor and conservation and government affairs advocate. The current Simms management team and existing employee base also will remain in place.

Simms will be part of Vista Outdoor's Outdoor Products segment and will be included in the new Outdoor Products Company upon the completion of the previously announced separation.

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.