Bass Pro Shops

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Bass Pro Shop
Private
Industry Retail
Founded 1971
Founder John Morris
Headquarters Springfield, Missouri
Number of locations
95
Key people
John Morris Founder and majority owner
James (Jim) Hagale President & CEO
Products Hunting, fishing, and outdoor merchandise
Revenue 4.45 billion (2015)[1]
Number of employees
22,000(2015)
Subsidiaries Cabela's
Website www.basspro.com

Bass Pro Shops (Outdoor World) is a privately held retailer of hunting, fishing, camping and related outdoor recreation merchandise, known for stocking a wide selection of gear. Bass Pro Shops supports and sells merchandise for the National Audubon Society.

History[edit]

Bass Pro Shops at the Memphis Pyramid
Bass Pro Shops at Vaughan Mills

The majority owner, John Morris, began his career in sporting goods with a fishing section in the back of a Brown Derby liquor store owned by his father, located in Springfield MO on the road to Table Rock Lake and Branson, Missouri. That small fishing department sold homemade bait and worms, proving popular enough that Bass Pro Shops was incorporated in 1971. These homemade baits were so popular that many people wanted the opportunity to buy these when they had returned home. Thus began the Bass Pro Shops catalog, first mailed in 1974. Soon, it became the world's largest mail order sporting goods store.

In 1975, to meet the burgeoning demand for Bass Pro Shops exclusive products, American Rod and Gun was established. Acting as a separate wholesaling entity ARG serves more than 7,000 independently owned retail stores worldwide. In 1977, Bass Pro Shops introduced the first fish-ready complete boat motor and trailer package with the Bass Tracker. In 1984, construction began on the Outdoor World Catalog Showroom in Springfield, Missouri. Big Cedar Lodge opened in 1988 on Table Rock Lake.

In 1995, Bass Pro Shops Sportsman's Warehouse opened in Atlanta, Georgia, its first store outside the state of Missouri. In November 2001, taking advantage of Outdoor World's popularity as a tourist destination, the Wonders of Wildlife museum was opened next door to the store in Springfield.[2][3] The Wonders of Wildlife Museum & Aquarium closed for renovation in 2007. As of October 2016 it is still closed with an expected reopening by the end of the year.[4]

In 2015, Bass Pro Shops opened a store inside the Memphis Pyramid, a former sports arena and concert venue in Memphis, Tennessee. In addition to the retail store itself, the building houses two restaurants, a bowling alley, a 100-room hotel, an observation deck, and the tallest free-standing elevator in America. At 535,000 sq ft, The Pyramid is Bass Pro's largest store.

In October 2016 Bass Pro Shops announced that they had reached a deal to acquire competitor Cabela's for $5.5 billion. The deal is being financed via preferred equity financing from Goldman Sachs and Pamplona. Goldman Sachs will contribute $1.8 billion towards financing and Pamplona will contribute the remainder for a total commitment of $2.4 billion.[13] The new entity is expected to be formed and in operation in Q1 or Q2 of 2017.[5] The new entity will keep Cabela’s base in Sidney and Lincoln, Nebraska. Johnny Morris will continue as CEO of the new entity. He will also be the majority shareholder of the new privately held entity. Tommy Milner stressed that the company had reviewed a range of options that would maximize value, with the board choosing to go the route of Bass Pro Shops.

House brands[edit]

Bass Pro Shops carries a number of house brands. Among these are:

Ascend
API
Bass Pro Shops
Bob Timberlake
Johnny Morris Reels
Natural Reflections
Offshore Angler
Occulus
RangeMaxx
Redhead
Uncle Buck's
White River
Worldwide Sportsman
XPSl
XTS
Blackout
Archenemy

Tracker Marine Group[edit]

For the article on the company, see Tracker Marine Group.

In 1978, Bass Pro Shops introduced the Bass Tracker boat, produced by the Tracker Marine Group. Its brands include Tracker Boats, Nitro, Sun Tracker, Tahoe, Fisher, ProCraft, Kenner, Mako Myacht and SeaCraft. These boats are sold in showrooms attached to every Bass Pro Shops store, in stand alone Tracker dealerships, and to independent marine dealers throughout the United States. All Tracker Marine Group boats are manufactured in multiple plants in southern Missouri. Over 400,000 people have purchased Tracker boats since 1978.[2]

Retail stores[edit]

Bass Pro Shops has 94 existing stores in the United States and Canada. The store sizes range from 20,000 square feet (1,900 m2) up to 535,000 square feet (49,700 m2). The largest flagship stores are known as Outdoor World stores. The decor of the stores includes taxidermy mounts native to the local area. All stores have an indoor water feature that showcases fish species that are indigenous to the area. The fish in their tanks are game fish of great size. In some of these aquariums, professional anglers and store pro-staff hold demonstrations showing the use of an artificial bait. They catch the fish in these tanks to show how well the bait works. Bass Pro Shops is also known for its Outdoor Skills Workshops, teaching skills as varied as fly fishing, Dutch oven cooking, archery hunting with an archery range in the store, and GPS navigation. They hold many skills workshops with the top names in the outdoor world.[2]

The Rancho Cucamonga, California Outdoor World store is used for the exterior shots of the fictional "Outdoor Man" store in the ABC sitcom Last Man Standing, starring Tim Allen, that premiered in 2011. Camera crews have also visited the store several times to film interior shots.[6]

Outdoor World locations[edit]

Main entrance to the Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World in Springfield, Missouri
Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World at the Louisiana Boardwalk in Bossier City, Louisiana
State/Province City Size Year Opened
Alabama Leeds 150,000 sq ft[7] 2008[8]
Alabama Prattville 140,000 sq ft[9] 2007[10]
Alabama Spanish Fort 140,000 sq ft[11] 2008[12]
Alaska Anchorage 80,000 sq ft[13] 2014
Alberta Canada Calgary/Rocky View 150,000 sq ft[14] 2009
Arizona Mesa 170,000 sq ft[15] 2006[16]
Arkansas Little Rock 120,000 sq ft[17] 2013
British Columbia Canada Vancouver/Tsawwassen 145,000 sq ft[18] 2016[19]
California Manteca 120,000 sq ft[20] 2008[16]
California Rancho Cucamonga 180,000 sq ft[21] 2007
California Rocklin 100,000 sq ft[22] 2015
California San Jose 145,000 sq ft[23] 2015
Colorado Colorado Springs 117,000 sq ft[24] 2013
Colorado Denver 186,000 sq ft[25] 2005
Connecticut Bridgeport 150,000 sq ft[26] 2015
Florida Tampa 183,000 sq ft[27] 2015
Florida Dania Beach 160,000 sq ft[28] 1998
Florida Ft. Myers 130,000 sq ft[29] 2005
Florida Orlando 150,000 sq ft[30] 2000
Florida Palm Bay 80,000 sq ft[31] 2013
Florida Tallahassee 70,000 sq ft[32] 2013
Georgia Lawrenceville 130,000 sq ft 2001
Georgia Savannah 103,000 sq ft 2003
Illinois Bolingbrook 140,000 sq ft[33] 2013
Illinois East Peoria 150,000 sq ft 2011
Illinois Gurnee 133,000 sq ft[34] 1997
Indiana Portage 135,000 sq ft[35] 2007
Indiana Clarksville 280,000 sq ft[36] 2005
Iowa Altoona 145,000 sq ft[37] 2009
Iowa Council Bluffs 130,000 sq ft[38] 2005
Kansas Olathe 135,000 sq ft[39] 2007
Louisiana Bossier City 106,000 sq ft[40] 2003
Louisiana Denham Springs 163,000 sq ft[41] 2008[16]
Maryland Hanover 130,000 sq ft[42] 2001
Massachusetts Foxborough 140,000 sq ft[43] 2007
Michigan Auburn Hills 130,000 sq ft[44] 1998
Mississippi Pearl 130,000 sq ft[45] 2005[45]
Missouri Independence 180,000 sq ft[46] 2008[16]
Missouri Springfield 500,000 sq ft 1981[47]
North Carolina Concord 106,000 sq ft[48] 1999
Nevada Las Vegas 165,000 sq ft[49] 2004[50]
New Brunswick Canada Dieppe 95,000 sq ft[51] 2015
New Hampshire Hooksett 149,000 sq ft[52] 2014
Ohio West Chester Township, Butler County, Ohio TBD 2016[16]
Ohio Rossford 150,000 sq ft[53] 2008[16]
Oklahoma Broken Arrow 130,000 sq ft[54] 2005[16]
Oklahoma Oklahoma City 110,000 sq ft[54] 2003[16]
Ontario Canada Vaughan 131,184 sq ft 2004[55]
Pennsylvania Harrisburg 165,000 sq ft[56] 2004[16]
South Carolina Myrtle Beach 105,000 sq ft[57] 2003[58]
Tennessee Bristol 120,000 sq ft 2014
Tennessee Memphis (at the Pyramid) 535,000 sq ft[59] 2015
Tennessee Nashville 150,000 sq ft[60] 2001[61]
Tennessee Sevierville 130,000 sq ft[62] 2005
Texas Garland 120,000 sq ft[63] 2006[16]
Texas Grapevine 200,000 sq ft[64] 1999
Texas Katy 138,000 sq ft[65] 1999
Texas Pearland 150,000 sq ft[66] 2007
Texas Round Rock 104,000 sq ft 2015
Texas San Antonio 200,000 sq ft[67] 2006
Texas Harlingen 145,000 sq ft[68] 2011[69]
Virginia Hampton 105,000 sq ft[70] 2003[70]
Virginia Richmond (Hanover County) 150,000 sq ft[71] 2008[16]
Washington Tacoma 170,000 sq ft[72] 2014[73]

Other locations[edit]

Bass Pro Shops have several other stores that do not fall under the Outdoor World flagship brand.

State City Store Name Size Year Opened
Florida Destin World Wide Sportsman 50,000 sq ft[74] 2003[75]
Florida Islamorada World Wide Sportsman 27,000 sq ft[61] 1995
Florida Palm Bay Sportsman's Center[76] 112,000 sq ft 2013
Florida Port St. Lucie Sportsman's Center[77] 100,000 sq ft 2013
Florida Sweetwater World Wide Sportsman 100,000 sq ft[78] 2006[78]
Florida Tallahassee Outpost 70,000 sq ft[79] 2013
Georgia Macon Sportsman's Warehouse 120,000 sq ft 2006
Missouri Branson White River Outpost 80,000 sq ft[80] 2006[81]
Missouri Columbia Sportsman's Center 82,000 sq ft[82] 2005[83]
Missouri Saint Charles Sportsman's Warehouse 88,500 sq ft[84] 2001
Missouri Springfield Outlet 20,000 sq ft[85]
New York Auburn Sportsman's Center 85,000 sq ft[86] 2004
New York Utica Outpost 65,000 sq ft[87] 2013
North Carolina Cary Sportsman's Center 105,000 sq ft[88] 2013
Ontario Canada Niagara-on-the-Lake Outpost 81,000 sq ft 2014
Tennessee Memphis Sportsman's Warehouse 84,000 sq ft[89] 2002
Tennessee East Ridge Outpost 2016

Upcoming locations[edit]

Bass Pro Shops have several stores under construction and opening soon.

State City Size Year Opening
Florida St. John's County 104,000 sq ft[90] 2018[91]
Florida North Palm Beach 75,000 sq ft[92] Unknown
Ohio Boston Heights 100,000 sq ft[93] 2016
Ohio West Chester 150,000 sq ft[94] Unknown
New York Uniondale 80,000-120,000 sq ft[95] Unknown
New York Victor 145,000 sq ft[96] 2016
New Jersey Sayreville 200,000 sq ft[97] 2017

Islamorada Fish Company Restaurant[edit]

Logo of Islamorada Fish Company

Many locations include an Islamorada Fish Company, a chain of restaurants owned by Bass Pro Shops.

Uncle Buck's Fishbowl and Grill[edit]

The new San Jose, CA, Bridgeport, CT, Tsawwassen, BC, Altoona, IA, East Peoria, IL, Harlingen, TX, Round Rock, TX, Bristol, TN, Memphis, TN, and Tacoma, WA Outdoor World locations feature a first for Bass Pro Shops: a 12-lane bowling alley. The project is in cooperation with Brunswick Bowling & Billiards. In addition to bowling, the facility offers a full-service restaurant and bar as well as world-class billiards in the Black Widow billiard room. The 15,000 sq ft (1,400 m2) underwater themed facility is connected to the Bass Pro Shops, but features a separate entrance to accommodate late night diners and bowlers.

NRA National Sporting Arms Museum[edit]

After nearly a decade of work by the NRA and Bass Pro Shops, the NRA National Sporting Arms Museum opened in the flagship store in Springfield, Missouri on August 2, 2013. It showcases almost 1,000 sporting artifacts from the 1600s to today, including some historically significant firearms from the NRA Museum Collection. The museum will host firearms and artwork from the Remington Arms Company factory collection, a multimillion-dollar collection of U.S. military sidearms, engraved Colt revolvers of the American frontier, the guns of Annie Oakley and firearms of U.S. Presidents like Teddy Roosevelt and Dwight Eisenhower.[98]

Affiliation with NASCAR[edit]

Bass Pro Shops and its owner, John Morris, have had a longtime interest in NASCAR racing. The company has sponsored such racers as Dale Earnhardt, Kerry Earnhardt, and Martin Truex Jr. Truex, Jr. won the 2004 and 2005 Busch Series championships in the #8 Bass Pro Shops-sponsored Chevy, and drove the #1 Chevy for Earnhardt Ganassi Racing in the Sprint Cup series from 2005 to 2009. He got his first win at Dover International Speedway and finished 11 in the Chase for the Sprint Cup in 2007. While Truex, Jr. renewed with Bass Pro Shops as his main sponsor for three years in 2007. In 2009, he announced he would be leaving Earnhardt Ganassi Racing for Michael Waltrip Racing in 2010. Jamie McMurray, former driver of the Roush Fenway Racing Crown Royal Ford Fusion and who is from Joplin, MO (approx. 60 miles away from the national headquarters in Springfield), replaced Truex, Jr. for the 2010 season.

McMurray won the 2010 Daytona 500 in his first race driving in the Bass Pro Shops-sponsored Chevrolet. He followed that up by winning the 2010 Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis, making him the 3rd driver to win both races in the same season. He also won the 2010 Bank of America 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway.

In the Xfinity Series, Bass Pro Shops was the main sponsor for the #3 car driven by Ty Dillon. Also in the Truck Series, Bass Pro Shops sponsors the #32 truck driven by Ryan Truex.[99]

Beginning with the 2013 season, Bass Pro Shops signed a multi-year agreement to be the primary sponsor for the #14 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet SS driven by 3-time Sprint Cup Champion Tony Stewart.

Bass Pro Shops reunites with Martin Truex Jr. in 2016 to be the primary sponsor of the #78 Furniture Row Sprint Cup car at the Daytona 500 and 8 more races during the 2016 season.

Also in 2016, Bass Pro Shops became the primary sponsor of the August race at Bristol Motor Speedway, one of the most iconic events in NASCAR. The event is now known as the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race.

Gun-Sales Controversies[edit]

James Holmes, convicted of the 2012 Aurora shooting in which 12 people were killed and 70 were injured in a crowded movie theater, legally bought two of the four firearms he used in the attack at Bass Pro Shops in Denver. They were a .40 caliber Glock handgun and a Remington 870 shotgun. The other weapons used in the attack were legally purchased at a competitor's stores, Gander Mountain.[100]

Regarding Holmes' firearms purchases, Larry Whiteley, manager of Bass Pro Shops communications at the company's headquarters, said, "This is an unspeakable tragedy, and we join with all Americans in offering our prayerful support. Based on the records we have reviewed, personnel in our Denver store correctly and fully followed all federal requirements with respect to the sale of one shotgun and one handgun to the individual identified in this incident. Background checks, as required by federal law, were properly conducted, and he was approved. Again, our hearts go out to the victims and their families. We also offer our support and appreciation to the law enforcement and emergency response professionals and all others who responded to give aid to these innocent victims."[100]

In 2015, 13 U.S. senators, all of them Democrats, sent a letter to Bass Pro Shops and two other companies in late July, asking the retailers to change one aspect of their gun sales policy.[101]

Citing the June 2015 Charleston church shooting deaths of nine parishioners, the senators told Bass Pro Shops, Nebraska-based Cabela's and Texas-based EZPawn that the change was needed out of the “duty to ensure that your products do not get into the hands of dangerous individuals.” The issue at the center of the senators’ request was this: A provision of the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act allows gun retailers to proceed with a firearms sale after three days if an applicant’s background check is still pending. The senators saw this “default to proceed” as a loophole, and the letter asked Bass Pro Shops and the two other retailers to stop selling guns when the background check is still pending but three days have passed.[101]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]