Jarden Corp. is dissolving Stearns Inc. and folding it into The Coleman Co. as part of a consolidation that will close one factory and significantly cut employment at another.
“The Coleman Company, Inc. is pleased to add complementary brands such as Stearns, Sevylor, Hodgman, Nevin, Helium and Mad Dog Gear to the companys outstanding portfolio of outdoor brands,” read a statement obtained by SportsOneSource late Friday.
As part of the restructuring, Jarden will close Stearns factory in Grey Eagle, MN July 2 and reduce manufacturing operations at a second plant in nearby Sauk Rapids, MN, according to a statement by Joan Carter, manager of organizational communication for Coleman.
The Saulk Rapids plant will focus on making water safety and rescue products for the U.S. government and military with limited production of recreational products. Jarden will merge some back-office positions into Colemans headquarters in Wichita, KS.
Stearns brands include the Stearns line of marine safety gear, dry wear, PFDs, wet suits, ropes, towables, inflatable kayaks, sleeping pads, boots and waders. It also makes Sevylor rafts, Sospenders inflatable life jackets and Hodgman and Mad Dog hunting and fishing gear, including vests, footwear and waders. Coleman did not provide details on where these products will be made or how they will be positioned within the Coleman portfolio.
Stearns only acquired the Helium, Nevin, and World Ski Lines in October. Helium and Nevin ski and wakeboard vests, lines, and handles are used by athletes. World Ski Lines is a well-known provider of inflatable water sports products and accessories.
While Coleman did not specify job cuts, the St.Cloud Times reported on its web site Friday that 61 jobs would be lost at the Grey Eagle plant and another 105 at the Sauk Rapid plant, which currently employs approximately 330. Coleman said it would complete layoffs at Sauk by year end.
“This is a difficult decision made to improve the company for the benefit of stakeholders, customers and consumers,” Carter wrote in a statement released to SportsOneSource. “The company is making these changes to provide operational flexibility and competitive product-costs that will allow the organization to gain world-wide market share and to succeed in the years ahead.”
Jarden acquired Stearns in May 2007 as part of its $1.2 billion acquisition of K2 Inc.