With a video declaring the two companies were “Moving Forward Together,” Bass Pro on Monday celebrated the closing of its $4 billion merger with Cabela’s.
In the video, seen HERE, a voiceover offers any definitions about what “together” means, including “family,” “from the heart,” “loyalty,” “pride” and “sharing memories” while images show the humble beginnings of both Cabela’s and Bass Pro. The video then gets more specific of the combination of companies will create a stronger retailer. The video closes with, “Together we can serve our customers like never before. Together we can help famiiles connect to the Great Outdoors like never before. Together we can conserve and protect the Great Outdoors like never before. Welcome to the Great Outdoors.”
According to a statement, the combined company is “poised to provide customers with unmatched offerings spanning premier destination retail, outdoor equipment manufacturing, world-class resort destinations and more with a strong commitment to advancing conservation initiatives.”
The deal, in the works for more than a year, brings Cabela’s 82 stores in the U.S. and Canada into the Bass Pro Shops fold. Bass Pro Shops currently has 95 stores in the U.S. and Canada.
“We are excited to unite these iconic American brands to better serve our loyal customers and fellow outdoor enthusiasts,” said Bass Pro Shops Founder and CEO Johnny Morris, in the statement. “As we move forward, we are committed to retaining everything customers love about both Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s by creating a ‘best-of-the-best’ experience that includes the superior products, outstanding customer service and exceptional value our customers have come to expect. We’re also deeply motivated by the potential to significantly advance key conservation initiatives.”
It’s not clear how many of the roughly 2,000 jobs based in Cabela’s hometown of Sidney, NE, will remain after Bass Pro acquires Cabela’s. Bass Pro Shops is based in Springfield, MO and Cabela’s is the city’s largest employer.
But a few answers came from a “Frequently Asked Question” section on its website:
What are the customer benefits of uniting these companies?
This is an opportunity to create a “best of the best” shopping experience for all outdoor enthusiasts worldwide for generations to come. Bringing together these two great companies will advance our impact on the future of conservation like never before while protecting the outdoor heritage we all hold dear. We plan to retain and grow everything customers love about both brands.
Will the company’s name change?
We will continue celebrating and promoting both the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s brands as we bring our two great companies together.
Will Bass Pro Shops gift cards be honored at Cabela’s locations and vice versa?
Customers can exchange a Bass Pro Shops gift card to a Cabela’s gift card for an equal amount and vice versa. Gift cards are exchanged at the customer service counter in either store or by contacting our online customer service centers. To exchange a Cabela’s gift card that you would like to use at Bass Pro Shops, call 1-800-211-6440 to have it exchanged. To exchange a Bass Pro Shops gift card that you would like to use at Cabela’s, call 1-800-237-4444 to have it exchanged. We are working to improve this process moving forward.
Will I be able to return Cabela’s purchases to Bass Pro Shops locations and vice versa?
Yes, Cabela’s purchases can be returned to our customer service counters at Bass Pro Shops and vice versa or by contacting our online customer service centers.
Will existing exclusive brands and products still be available at Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s?
Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s have strong national proprietary brands in several categories. Our goal is to continue developing and growing our brands to ensure we provide the same exceptional quality, service and value that customers have come to know and trust from Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s exclusive products.
Will Cabela’s CLUB Visa cardholders earn points at Bass Pro Shops locations?
Yes, Cabela’s CLUB Visa holders will earn 1% back on all purchases made at Bass Pro Shops and all locations that accept Visa. In addition, Cabela’s CLUB Visa members will still earn 2%, 3% or 5% back on qualifying purchases at all Cabela’s locations, earning points for free gear and incredible outdoor experiences. We are working on solutions to better connect the programs.
Will Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Rewards Mastercard cardholders earn points at Cabela’s locations?
Yes, Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Rewards Mastercard holders will earn 1% back on all purchases made at Cabela’s and all locations that accept Mastercard. In addition, you will still earn 3% or 5% back on qualifying purchases at all Bass Pro Shops locations, earning points for free gear and unique experiences. We are working on solutions to better connect the programs.
Shareholders of Cabela’s approved the merger in July, with shareholders receiving $61.50 per share. In addition to selling Cabela’s stores, website and catalog business to Bass Pro, the company also sold off its credit card unit to Georgia-based Synovus Bank. Ultimately, the deal calls for the credit card business to be sold to Capital One.
In its statement, Bass Pro noted that the combined company “offers outdoor enthusiasts superior products, dynamic locations and above all, outstanding customer service.” Innovative experiences include Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid, the ” largest, most dynamic retail destination experience ever created.” Located on the banks of the Mississippi River, the gigantic 52-million cubic-foot facility also stands out for its Big Cypress Lodge. Additional offerings include award-winning hospitality and nature-based attractions like Big Cedar Lodge, the wilderness resort in Missouri’s Ozark Mountains recently recognized as the number one resort in the Midwest by Travel + Leisure for the second consecutive year.
The company’s manufacturing arm, White River Marine Group offers an unsurpassed collection of industry-leading brands including Tracker, Sun Tracker, Nitro, Tahoe, Regency, Mako, Ranger, Triton, Stratos And Ascend among others.
Conservation and introducing new audiences to the outdoors is a key focus of Morris. Last week the conservation-minded visionary opened Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium, the largest fish and wildlife attraction in the world. Located next to Bass Pro Shops National Headquarters in Springfield, MO. Larger than the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, the 350,000 square-foot complex has 35,000 live fish, mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds.
Wonders of Wildlife is a gift to future generations from Johnny Morris, establishing a significant not-for-profit conservation attraction and education center in the heart of America.
The statement concluded by talking up both company’s “shared love of the outdoors.” The statement read, “Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s “were each born from a love of the outdoors and share a remarkable heritage and legacy. Avid young angler Johnny Morris founded Bass Pro Shops in 1972 with eight square feet of space in the back of his father’s liquor store in Springfield, Missouri, the company’s sole location for its first 13 years of business. Cabela’s dates back to 1961 when Dick, Mary and Jim Cabela began a mail order service for outdoor products around their kitchen table in Chappell, Nebraska. Both companies went on to become industry leaders. Together the combined company will celebrate both the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s brands while building on the rich history of both companies and looking to the future to best serve customers and outdoor enthusiasts.”
Photo courtesy Bass Pro