Cabela's Sold to Bass Pro Shops for $5.5 Billion

15:28 October 03, 2016
By: Anthony O'Donnell
The nation's two largest outdoor and hunting retailers will undergo a merger if a $5.5 billion deal is approved. Bass Pro Shops announced Monday morning that it will purchase competitor Cabela's, but will retain the company's brand. The combined companies would boast 184 locations and 39,000 employees throughout North America. Bass Pro Shops currently has two Louisiana locations, while Cabela's has one.

Bass Pro Shops cited mutual interests between the companies in a statement about the merger. "The essence of both Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's is a deep passion to serve outdoor enthusiasts and support conservation," the statement said, going on to point out the two companies' "highly complementary business philosophies, product offerings, expertise and geographical footprints." Although the companies both valued the purchase at $5.5 billion, the Wall Street Journal put it closer to $4.5 billion, citing debts and other items that the company likely included in its valuation.
The merger will combine two similar companies operating in different parts of the country. Bass Pro Shops is only slightly larger than Cabela's, with 99 stores in the eastern US and Canada and some 20,000 employees, to Cabela's 85 stores and 19,000 employees, mostly operating in the western US. The company will remain private and be led by Bass Pro Shops CEO Johnny Morris. Cabela's board of directors unanimously approved the purchase. The only remaining steps are shareholder approval and regulatory hearings. The merger will likely be completed in early 2017.
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