Rapala VMC hired Mike Baumgartner as Western regional sales manager.

Baumgartner started his career working at Scheels as a fish and hunt sales associate while in college. Later, he joined Pure Fishing as a key account manager. During his 12 years there, Baumgartner worked with dealers and national accounts nationwide to drive key initiatives and grow sales in all fishing categories.

“I’ve been using Rapala lures since I was a kid, so this feels like coming full circle,” said Baumgartner, who noted that the company’s Jigging Rap is “hard to beat in hard water or open water.”

As Western Regional Sales Manager.at Rapala VMC, Baumgartner will work with the company’s retail partners to market the brands it sells in the U.S., including Rapala lures, knives, apparel, and accessories; Storm, Blue Fox, Luhr-Jensen, and Williamson lures; StrikeMaster ice fishing augers and apparel; VMC hooks and terminal tackle; Sufix fishing line and leaders; CrushCity softbaits, and 13 Fishing rods and reels.

“Mike brings a deep, grassroots understanding of what customers want and expect from manufacturers,” said Travis Tuma, vice president of sales for Rapala VMC. “Mike’s experience, knowledge and passion for his customers fit perfectly into the Rapala culture. And now, with the addition of 13 Fishing and CrushCity, we’re looking forward to growing our strong portfolio of brands with Mike’s expertise. We’re very excited to have Mike become part of the Rapala family.”

“Growing up in Minnesota, Rapala is the most iconic brand around,” said Baumgartner, “So, for me, it’s a true honor to be part of the Rapala family.”

Images courtesy Rapala VMC