Columbus, GA – Effective Tuesday, September 30, 2014, Telford, England-based fishing brand, Preston Innovations, was acquired by Zebco Brands of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Terms of sale were not released.
Preston Innovations is the UK’s leading match fishing brand as well as having a growing presence in the coarse, carp and bait segments of the market with its brands Korum, Avid Carp and Sonubaits. The Preston Innovations business is growing rapidly due to strong growth in Europe.
Zebco Brands, based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is the fishing tackle business owned by Columbus, Georgia-headquartered W.C. Bradley Co., a multi-brand supplier of high quality consumer goods focused on the home and leisure lifestyle markets.
David Preston, founder and owner of Preston Innovations, commented, “I am extremely proud of the business we have built, but felt we had reached a size and complexity which were better suited to a new owner who could exploit the clear growth potential of Preston Innovations in Europe and beyond. Zebco Brands is a strong international player which has a desire to expand the business in the UK and Europe and which has access to the capital to realize the potential in the business.”
Jeff Pontius, President of Zebco Brand’s worldwide business said, “I am pleased that David chose us to continue building the Preston Innovations brands. We have been looking to expand in Europe, and in particular have been looking for a premier player in the match and carp segments. We see enough size and diversity in the European marketplace to allow Preston Innovations and Zebco Europe to both continue growing. They are generally complementary with different brands and geographic strengths. The team at Preston Innovations has a lot of passion for building their brands and we will be there to support that growth.”
This acquisition supports the W.C. Bradley Co.’s international growth strategy. “I am happy that we were able to conclude this deal and continue building our international presence in fishing,” said Marc Olivié, President and CEO of W.C. Bradley Co. “Zebco Brands is doing well in both the US and Europe, and it is good to see the W.C. Bradley Co. take another significant step into the European market with Preston Innovations.”
About Zebco Brands
Zebco Brands (www.zebco.com), based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is a leading marketer of fishing tackle and outdoor gear sold under a portfolio of brand names. The Zebco®, Rhino® and Martin® brands compete in recreational freshwater rods and reels. TheQuantum®, Fin-Nor® and Van Staal® brands are targeted at avid fishermen from freshwater to offshore saltwater. The CajunLine® brand competes in fishing line while the William Joseph™ and Badlands® brands provide serious packs and gear for fly fishing and hunting respectively. Zebco has been in the fishing business since 1949 and was acquired by the W.C. Bradley Co. in 2001. In 2011, Zebco Brands acquired Zebco Sports Europe (www.zebco-europe.com), one of the oldest and most successful producers of fishing tackle in Europe. This move reunited the two Zebco businesses and brands that were sold separately in 2001 and supports Zebco Brands’ global growth strategy.
About W.C. Bradley Co.
The W.C. Bradley Co., founded in 1885, is a privately owned company headquartered in Columbus, Georgia. It is a multi-brand supplier of high-quality consumer goods and services focused primarily on the home and leisure lifestyle markets. It is comprised of Char-Broil (Columbus, Georgia), W.C. Bradley Co. Real Estate (Columbus, Georgia), Lamplight (Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin), and Zebco Brands (Tulsa, Oklahoma).