PRADCO Outdoor Brands has acquired Gene Larew Lures in Tulsa.
The product development, marketing, accounting, manufacturing and purchasing functions of PRADCO Fishing are administered from the Fisheries Headquarters in Fort Smith.
PRADCO Outdoor Brands is headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama. It operates fishing brands like BOOYAH, YUM, Rebel and War Eagle, as well as hunting brands like Moultrie, Whitetail Institute and Code Blue.
Gene Larew Lures produces and sells fishing lures under the Gene Larew, Bobby Garland and Crappie Pro brands.
For now, Larew and Garland production will remain in Tulsa, according to a PRADCO press release. The acquisition was announced on Wednesday afternoon.
“Today we have added two more iconic names to our already historic line of fishing brands – Larew and Garland,” said Bruce Stanton, vice president and general manager of PRADCO’s fisheries division, on Wednesday. “Not only are we expanding our bass offering with Larew and jumping to the top of the crappie bait category with Garland, but we also have a wealth of manufacturing experience, industry knowledge and fishing expertise that fully compliment the things we do at the forefront this branch. We were excited! “
Chris Lindenberg, owner of Gene Larew Lures, said he has confidence in PRADCO to continue its brands.
“Just a few hours from Fort Smith, we know PRADCO, Bruce and many of his employees. I am delighted to pass my company on to you because I know it is in good hands,” said Lindenberg. “You’ve proven to be a great steward of the brands I grew up with, and I wanted Larew and Garland to have a permanent next home in such a prominent location. I couldn’t be happier than having PRADCO taking our efforts to the next level and beyond. “
Gene Larew and Bobby Garland were two pioneers in the soft plastic bait industry, according to a PRADCO press release. Larew became famous for adding salt to bait with his Salt Craw. Garland was first known for his bass lure creations – one of which is the Gitzit – and later for his crappie designs, including today’s best-selling soft plastic crappie lure, the Baby Shad.
Lindenberg brought the two names together under one roof shortly after purchasing the Gene Larew brand and founded Gene Larew Lures in 2006. He later added the Crappie Pro brand in 2015, a line of premium jigheads.
“The past 13 years have been an amazing drive, and I cannot thank our Larew family enough for their hard work and many contributions that have helped bring the business to where it is today. Employees, professionals, customers and consumers have been great partners during this performance period and my sincere thanks go to all of them, ”said Lindenberg.
Lindenberg will be involved with Operation Gene Larew Lures throughout the transition and for as long as he wishes. He will continue to run his other businesses in Tulsa, with Western Filter Co. providing much of its attention to the active midstream sector of the oil and gas industry.
Other Larew employees, including Eli Smith, George Toalson and Gary Dollahon, will continue in their roles at the Larew, Garland and Crappie Pro brands under the leadership of PRADCO.
Stanton noted that while PRADCO has a prominent role in the bass market, he believes the acquisition will now take the company higher in the crappie fishing world. Prior to the acquisition, PRADCO had experience in this category with thill bobbers and bandit crank baits.
“The acquisition of Gene Larew is further proof of our commitment and vision to be the leader in high quality fishery products represented by the best names in the fishery,” said Robert Schoenvogel, President of PRADCO Outdoor Brands. “Customer friendliness is a high priority in our mindset and I firmly believe that Larew and Garland customers will benefit from the efficiency of PRADCO, including consolidating brands onto a single order and shipping from our modern distribution center in Calera , Alabama. “