Friday, June 29, 2007

Quote of the Week

Yes, Captain Queeg is on the deck of the Bounty here with my steel ball bearings in my hand; and I'm walking around in a little tight uniform.

Jeffrey Swartz - The Timberland Company - President, CEO

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Need a Blank Check? How about $500 Million will that work?

Heckmann Forms Buyout Firm
SportsOneSource Media Posted: 6/28/2007
Richard Heckmann, who will soon resign as CEO of K2 Inc. with its sale to Jarden, has formed a new buyout firm called Heckmann Corp. The new company intends to sell 62.5 million shares of stock for $8 each, or $500 million, according to a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. But the filing doesn't specify what will happen with the money.

The SEC filing says only that Heckmann Corp. was formed May 29 "to acquire or acquire control of one or more operating businesses" and those efforts "will not be limited to a particular industry."

Such companies are referred to as "blank-check" IPOs.

Among the members on Heckmann Corp's board are Dan Quayle, former Vice President and current chairman of global investments for the Wall Street investment fund Cerberus Capital Management; as well as retired Notre Dame football coach Lou Holtz; and Alfred Osborne, an associate dean in the University of California-Los Angeles Anderson School of Management. All three served on K2's board.

Heckmann, according to the filing, is planning on leaving K2 by August 1.

A Shift in Power?

Today, The U.S. Supreme Court struck down a 96-year-old ban on minimum pricing agreements between manufacturers and retailers. The 5-to-4 decision shifts the balance of power to brands, giving them the right to set minimum prices and reshaping the relationship between vendors and retailers...

How will this impact the outdoor industry?
Will this impact the outdoor industry?

We'll have to wait and see...

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

5.13b

Doesn't sound so hard anymore with grades pushing into the 5.15 stratosphere. I can still remember when Jibe sent 'To Bolt of Not to Be' at Smith. Today, there are plenty of 13-year olds climbing 13, but just try it at age 59 - now that's impressive.

This just in from Rab...

Rab Carrington, the renowned British mountaineer and founder of Rab, England’s premiere manufacturer of mountaineering and climbing apparel and gear, has successfully climbed his first 8a (5.13b) sport route at the age of 59.

Carrington started climbing in the ultra-traditional Scottish scene in the 1960’s. Although best known internationally for his high profile ascents in the European Alps, Himalaya and Andes (first ascent Rouse/Carrington route on the Pelerins, first Alpine ascent of Jannu in Nepal, many technical first ascents in Peru), Carrington has always considered himself first and foremost to be a rock climber.

Living in Sheffield on the edge of the Peak District has allowed Carrington to maintain a high standard on both gritstone and limestone while spending 20 years creating and building the Rab brand. While he remains an important design consultant to the brand that bears his name, the sale of Rab to Equip Outdoor Technologies, ltd. in 2003 allowed Carrington to focus more energy on his original passion for hard rock climbing. This has clearly paid off for Carrington who, in May, sent his first 8a (5.13b) with an ascent of New Age Traveler at Malham Cove in Yorkshire. This is likely but a milestone in his illustrious climbing career, as it has been only two years since he broke through the 7c barrier.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Coming Soon to a Mailbox Near You...

This Week in The B.O.S.S. Report

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THE B.O.S.S. REPORT. KNOW MORE. NOW.

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TOP STORIES:
--------------------------------------------
o Royal Robbins finds a new home at American Rec.
o World Kayak formed with goal to double whitewater
participation.
o VF Corp. eyes more acquisitions; Reef gets into
women's apparel.
o Lululemon first quarter comps jump 20%.
o Yue Yuen sees balanced Q2 growth.
o SGMA: PEP funding kept alive in Congress.
o Oxbow to make return to the U.S. market.
o Kaiser & Joy form New England rep agency.
o SSL adds new stockholders at annual board meeting.
o Luxottica acquires Oakley in $2 billion deal.
o BOB & Baby Jogger head to court.
o Guest Editorial: The future we make.
o Other Stories include nuun, Innes, Yakima,
Smartwool, Keen, and many more...


Some Excerpts:

After two and a half years under the ownership of the Phoenix Footwear group, Royal Robbins has found a new home in Kellwood’s American Recreation division.Phoenix will realize a net pretax gain of approximately $23 million from the transaction, which will allow the company to pay down the majority of its long-term debt, bringing it down to the low-to-mid-teen levels, post closing...

LINK

At the Reuter’s consumer and retail conference in New York, VF Corp. CEO Mackey MacDonald said that the company is ready to pursue more acquisitions and focus on outdoor and sportswear brands that cater to the women’s market...
In the women’s sportswear arena, there are several potential acquisition targets for VFC, including two vertically integrated retailers - lucy and Title Nine...

LINK

Guest Editorial: The Future We Make…

By Drew Simmons

...But take a look around. The outdoor lifestyle is not the only option out there - far from it. There are single corporations that do more business than every brand on the Outdoor Retailer show floor combined, and would they love it if we all starting waffling and self-doubting and hand-wringing and worrying about the fact that we’re doing too well, and selling too much product, and encouraging people to acquire, acquire, acquire. They’d love to co-opt our genuine spirit as their own, and take over a solid foundation that’s been built nice and square...

LINK

Thursday, June 21, 2007

How Low Can He Go?

Directly from a Newsweek Release:

In 19 months, George W. Bush will leave the White House for the last time. The latest NEWSWEEK Poll suggests that he faces a steep climb if he hopes to coax the country back to his side before he goes. In the new poll, conducted Monday and Tuesday nights, President Bush's approval rating has reached a record low. Only 26 percent of Americans, just over one in four, approve of the job the 43rd president is doing; while, a record 65 percent disapprove, including nearly a third of Republicans.

The new numbers -- a 2 point drop from the last NEWSWEEK Poll at the beginning of May -- are statistically unchanged, given the poll's 4 point margin of error. But the 26 percent rating puts Bush lower than Jimmy Carter, who sunk to his nadir of 28 percent in a Gallup poll in June 1979. In fact, the only president in the last 35 years to score lower than Bush is Richard Nixon. Nixon's approval rating tumbled to 23 percent in January 1974, seven months before his resignation over the botched Watergate break-in.

The war in Iraq continues to drag Bush down. A record 73 percent of Americans disapprove of the job Bush has done handling Iraq. Despite "the surge" in U.S. forces into Baghdad and Iraq's western Anbar province, a record-low 23 percent of Americans approve of the president's actions in Iraq, down 5 points since the end of March.

But the White House cannot pin his rating on the war alone. Bush scores record or near record lows on every major issue: from the economy (34 percent approve, 60 percent disapprove) to health care (28 percent approve, 61 percent disapprove) to immigration (23 percent approve, 63 percent disapprove). And-in the worst news, perhaps, for the crowded field of Republicans hoping to succeed Bush in 2008-50 percent of Americans disapprove of the president's handling of terrorism and homeland security. Only 43 percent approve, on an issue that has been the GOP's trump card in national elections since 9/11.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

American Rec: Kelty, Sierra Designs, Slumberjack, Wenger, Wenzel.... and Royal Robbins

Kellwood to Acquire Royal Robbins for $40 Million
SportsOneSource Media Posted: 6/19/2007
Kellwood Company signed an agreement to acquire Royal Robbins, Inc., a division of Phoenix Footwear Group, Inc. In October 2003, the company was acquired by Phoenix Footwear. Sales for Royal Robbins in calendar year 2006 were approximately $30 million. The transaction is expected to close by early July. Kellwood is purchasing Royal Robbins for approximately $40 million. The Company does not anticipate the acquisition will significantly impact 2007 results.

Phoenix Footwear expects to report a net pre-tax gain of approximately $23 million on the sale including transaction costs. Phoenix Footwear acquired Royal Robbins on October 31, 2003 for a total of $11.7 million...

LINK

Phoenix has been talking about a deal like this for at least two quarters. After all, its Phoenix FOOTWEAR and the company was never able to successfully extend the Royal Robbins brand into the footwear category, in spite of talking about it for the past three years.

Monday, June 18, 2007

The Power of a CEO

Shortly after Angel Martinez took over at Deckers after leaving Keen, the stock price bottomed out at $21.27. That was in April of 2005. Since then, Mr. Martinez has given stockholders a 344% return on their investment and the stock is trading at over $93.

Some people say that there is too much money pouring into the outdoor industry and we can't keep up with Wall Street's expectations. If we can keep turning out CEO's like Angel, and brands like Teva, Ugg and Simple, I'd say we're surpassing expectations...

Thursday, June 14, 2007

SGMA Spring Market

The show was apparently a worthy trade show for the sporting goods industry. However, word on the street is that the nude woman in the chocolate fondue-filled bathtub stole the show.
In the first week of June, the summer episodes of RSN Outdoors went live, bringing a blend of outdoor tips, special features, and real-time local weather and conditions to more than 100 RSN Resort Television affiliates nationwide.


Filmed in late May at RSN studios in Portland, Maine, the shows also feature a series of in-studio outdoor gear and fashion segments, keeping American outdoor enthusiasts engaged and entertained through the profile of more than 45 new products for the summer season.


Produced and hosted by Drew Simmons of Pale Morning Media, LLC, the special gear segments include some of the most stylish, innovative, and legendary names in the outdoor world.


“Our goal is to key on major trends in outdoor equipment and fashion, to highlight some exemplary pieces, and to drive traffic to the specialty retailers that live near the RSN affiliate network,” said Simmons. “With their national reach, RSN Television is the only media opportunity in the outdoor world that can provide such a massive amount of impressions within such a focused community.”

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Wasteful Swag...

From E.L.

“One editor here recalled that for its Windows 95 launch, Microsoft sent out a full-size window - with a window frame, sash and molding - that took two delivery guys to drop off,”


LINK

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Friday, June 01, 2007

Burton at OR?

We heard several rumors floating around that Burton would be at Summer OR with their lifestyle apparel line. While this seems like a great fit for the company - and a good sign for the health of OR, we just confirmed that they were just rumors and Burton will not be in Salt Lake City this summer...

Too bad.