Harris Williams & Co. Advises Fishing Holdings, LLC on its Sale to Bass Pro Group, LLC

February 11, 2015

Harris Williams & Co., a preeminent middle market investment bank focused on the advisory needs of clients worldwide, announces that it advised Fishing Holdings, LLC (Fishing Holdings), which was a portfolio company of Platinum Equity, on its sale to Bass Pro Group, LLC (Bass Pro Shops). Fishing Holdings is a world-class manufacturer of fishing boats under three legendary enthusiast brands – Ranger, Triton and Stratos. The transaction was led by Cheairs Porter of Harris Williams & Co.’s Richmond office and Ryan Budlong, Chip Duggins and Andy Warczak of Harris Williams & Co.’s Consumer Group.

“It has been an honor to work with the Fishing Holdings’ management team and they have done a phenomenal job building on the heritage that Forrest L. Wood started over 45 years ago,” said Cheairs Porter, a managing director at Harris Williams & Co. “Ranger is the most trusted brand of tournament professionals and has been highly aspirational for generations of anglers.”

“Fishing Holdings marks another successful transaction for Harris Williams & Co. in the enthusiast consumer industry. Bass Pro Shops will be a great strategic partner for Fishing Holdings and its terrific management team as they continue to execute the company’s growth plan,” said Ryan Budlong, a director at Harris Williams & Co.  “Working with exceptional brands like Ranger has afforded our firm continued success in the branded consumer sector.”

Fishing Holdings, headquartered in Flippin, Arkansas, is a world-class manufacturer of fiberglass and aluminum fishing boats, which are sold under the Ranger, Triton and Stratos brands. The company was founded in 1968 by Forrest L. Wood and has developed its legacy through building the highest-quality, top-performing fishing boats in the industry. Through its commitment to its customers and support of local and regional fishing tournaments, Fishing Holdings has been a key contributor to the fast growing tournament fishing industry and many of the top professionals use boats developed by Fishing Holdings.

Bass Pro Shops, headquartered in Springfield, Missouri, is a privately-held retailer of hunting, fishing, camping and related outdoor recreation merchandise. Founded in 1971, Bass Pro Shops is known for its large selection of fishing, hunting and other outdoor gear. Bass Pro Shops has been selling boats through its Tracker Marine division for over 35 years under the Tracker, Nitro, Mako, Sun Tracker, Tahoe, Regency and Ascend brands. Bass Pro Shops operates 90 stores and Tracker Marine Centers across America and Canada that are visited by more than 120 million people per year.

Harris Williams & Co. (www.harriswilliams.com), a member of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE:PNC), is a preeminent middle market investment bank focused on the advisory needs of clients worldwide.  The firm has deep industry knowledge, global transaction expertise, and an unwavering commitment to excellence.  Harris Williams & Co. provides sell-side and acquisition advisory, restructuring advisory, board advisory, private placements, and capital markets advisory services.

Harris Williams & Co.’s Consumer Group has completed more than 100 transactions in recent years across a variety of verticals, including branded consumer products; consumer services; food, beverage, and agribusiness; and restaurant and retail.  For more information on Harris Williams & Co.’s Consumer Group and other recent transactions, visit the Consumer Group’s section of the Harris Williams & Co. website.

Investment banking services are provided by Harris Williams LLC, a registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA and SIPC, and Harris Williams & Co. Ltd, which is authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.  Harris Williams & Co. is a trade name under which Harris Williams LLC and Harris Williams & Co. Ltd conduct business.

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