Confluence Watersports acquired Bomber Gear, a Colorado maker of technical apparel and performance skirts for the whitewater paddling market. The deal will round out Confluence Watersports’ accessories division, which includes premium paddle brand Adventure Technology and value gear brand Harmony.

Bomber Gear Founder Rick Franken will relocate from Colorado Springs to Confluence Watersports’ headquarters in Easley, S.C., where he will take the title of product development manager for Softgoods and Accessories in early January, 2011. He will work with Chris Pageau, Confluence Watersports general manager of Accessories.

“Rick will be able to focus on what he enjoys most and does best – designing cutting-edge products and bringing innovation to retailers and paddlers,” said Pageau. “Confluence gains strong design prowess and vision for our accessories division.”

Franken is an accomplished professional paddler and a master cut and sew product designer. He's highly respected in the paddlesports community and has brought unmatched commitment to Bomber Gear as a company by forming his life around the needs of the company to ensure optimal quality.

When Bomber Gear was first produced in Durango, CO, Franken lived and worked with his Navajo sewing base. When Bomber Gear's production was moved to Thailand, Franken embedded his family and his life in the community in which his sewing base lived.

The acquisition marks the first since Sue Rechner took over as CEO for Confluence Watersports in December, 2007. Confluence Watersports' other brands include Wilderness Systems, Perception, Dagger, Wave Sport and Mad River Canoe boats.