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Bass Pro ‘deeply committed’ to Fishing Holding brands in wake of resignations

By Jonathan Sweet

Several top executives at Fishing Holdings resigned during the Thanksgiving week, but owner Bass Pro Group remains "deeply committed" to the brands, the company said.

Fishing Holdings president and CEO Randy Hopper, vice president of sales Keith Daffron and vice president of finance Mendel Hughes all abruptly resigned effective Nov. 23. Fishing Holdings includes the Ranger, Stratos and Triton brands.

"Last week we regretfully accepted the resignations of three executives at Fishing Holdings: Randy Hopper, Keith Daffron and Mendel Hughes," Bass Pro Group said in a statement. "These actions were voluntary and do not reflect any changes in philosophy with regard to management. We remain deeply committed to the Ranger, Stratos and Triton brands and have tremendous respect for the strong, independent dealer network. The dealers and fantastic team of associates in Flippin, Ark. continue to have our full support and admiration."

Bass Pro acquired the brands from Platinum Equity in December 2014. Platinum Equity had acquired Ranger and Stratos out of the Genmar bankruptcy in February 2010, along with other brands that made up Rec Boat Holdings. The Rec Boat Holdings brands, including Four Winns, Glastron, Wellcraft and Scarab, were sold to Bénéteau Group in June 2014. Platinum acquired Triton from Brunswick in July 2010.

At the time, Hopper expressed excitement about the future as part of Bass Pro Shops.

“We’re very fortunate to be partnering with an organization with so much understanding of the industry and our brands,” he said.  “This new alliance will provide synergies that will strengthen our independent dealer base and ensure our continued focus on fishing.”

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