On Monday, hunting, fishing, and camping retailer Bass Pro Shops announced it is acquiring its top rival Cabela’s Inc. in a deal with $5.5 billion, or $65.50 per share. CAB stock closed the day up 15.02% to $63.18 per share; Brass Pro Shops is privately held.
This deal comes just 10 months after Sidney, Nebraska-based Cabela’s said it was reviewing strategic options, including a potential sale, after activist investor Elliot Management Corp. put pressure on the company.
The merger is set to create a national wilderness conglomerate with over 180 locations and about 40,000 employees, and the newly combined company would control more than 20% of the U.S. hunting, camping, and fishing market, an industry worth $50 billion, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Both Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s are best known for their large-format, destination stores filled to the brim with all the supplies one would need for hunting, fishing, or camping. And both, unfortunately, have been hit hard with changing consumer shopping preferences, as well as retail giants like Wal-Mart Stores Inc. WMT and Amazon.com Inc. AMZN entering the market.
“A driving force behind this agreement is the highly complementary business philosophies, product offerings, expertise and geographic footprints of the two businesses. The essence of both Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s is a deep passion to serve outdoor enthusiasts and support conservation,” said the companies in a statement.
Bass Pro Shops also announced the launch of a new, multi-year credit-card partnership with a banking subsidiary of Capital One COF. Capital One will now originate and service the Cabela’s CLUB, the company’s co-branded credit card.
The acquisition is expected to close in the first half of 2017. Guggenheim Securities was Cabela’s exclusive financial adviser, while JPMorgan was the sole financial adviser to Bass Pro Shops.
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