Bushnell Corporation

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Bushnell Corporation
Industry Imaging
Founded Japan (1948)
Founder David P. Bushnell
Headquarters Overland Park, Kansas, United States
Area served
Key people
Matt Reintjes, VP of Outdoor Products
Blake Lipham (CEO since November 2010)
Products Binoculars, telescopes, firearm scopes, flashlights, GPS devices, holographic weapon sights, sunglasses, laser rangefinders, night vision devices, speed gun, spotting scopes, trail cameras, Travel Tunes, WeatherFX
Revenue $64.9M USD
Number of employees
Parent Vista Outdoor
Subsidiaries Bollé Performance Eyewear
Browning Sports Optics Serengeti Eyewear Simmons Outdoor Corporation
Website Bushnell.com

Bushnell Corporation is an American company specializing in sporting optics and outdoor products based in Overland Park, Kansas, and is a subsidiary of Vista Outdoor. Bushnell's products include binoculars, telescopes, spotting scopes, riflescopes, red dot sights, GPS devices, laser rangefinders, game cameras, night vision equipment and other high-end optical equipment. The company also sells Bollé® Performance Eyewear ski goggles and sunglasses (which includes the H2O Optix sunglasses brand) and Serengeti Eyewear all-purpose sunglasses.

Company history[edit]

The company was founded in 1948 by David P. Bushnell when he returned to California from his honeymoon in Japan with two crates of binoculars and sold them by mail order.[1] Bushnell made precision binoculars affordable to middle-class Americans for the first time through a strategy of importing from manufacturers in Hong Kong, Taiwan and Japan who provided optics to his patented specifications.[1] Bushnell eventually expanded his business to include rifle scopes and spotting scopes. In 1971, Bushnell sold the company to Bausch & Lomb and it was renamed Bushnell Performance Optics. Three years later, Bushnell retired as vice-president of Bausch & Lomb.[1]

In 1999, Bushnell Performance Optics was acquired from Bausch & Lomb by the private equity firm Wind Point Partners through a recapitalization of Bushnell's then parent company, Worldwide Sports & Recreation.[2][3][4]

In 2001, Bushnell acquired the Bollé and Serengeti eyewear brands and the Moonlight line of night vision products.[5]

In 2002, Bushnell bought the sporting optics company Tasco. Tasco is a major international distributor of telescopes. The company's line of products mainly target amateur astronomers but has grown to include many products besides telescopes. Tasco's other products include terrestrial spotting scopes, microscopes, binoculars, and telescopic sights and other rifle accessories. Tasco sells through specialty outlets, catalogs, and online vendors.[5]

In 2005, Bushnell acquired Michael’s of Oregon. Michael's sold holsters, scope covers, cleaning kits, and other gun accessories under and along the brands Hoppe’s, Butler Creek, Stoney Point, and Uncle Mike’s Law Enforcement.[5] At the time of its purchase by Bushnell, Michael's earned about $60 million per year in profit. Michael's of Oregon was based in Oregon City. The deal was closed with debt and cash.[4]

In 2007, Bushnell was acquired by MidOcean Partners, another private equity firm, which acquired it in a leveraged recapitalization.[3] The same year, Bushnell acquired the Final Approach and Kolpin Hunting brands from Facilitator Capital Funds, a Wisconsin-based private equity firm. Both brands are well known among duck hunters.[5]

In June 2008, Bushnell acquired the assets of Simmons Outdoor Corporation from Meade Instruments.[6] Simmons manufactured optical goods such as binoculars and riflescopes. Simmons was Bushnell's seventh acquisition since 2001.

On Sept. 5, 2013, Alliant Techsystems announced it had entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Bushnell. Under the terms of the transaction, ATK paid $985 million in cash, subject to customary post-closing adjustments.[7]

After ATK merged with Orbital Sciences in 2015, it spun off Bushnell and other subsidiaries as Vista Outdoor, a publicly-listed company.


Bushnell Binoculars

Bushnell Outdoor Products[8] is the parent company of these brands:

  • Simmons Optics[9]
  • Millett[10]
  • Blackwater Gear
  • Browning Sports Optics[11]
  • Bushnell
  • Bushnell Golf[12]
  • Butler Creek[13]
  • Hoppe’s[14]
  • Simmons Outdoor Corporation[9]
  • Stoney Point[15]
  • Tasco[16]
  • Uncle Mike’s[17]
  • Uncle Mikes Law Enforcement[18]
  • Primos



Grendel counter-sniper rifle with Bushnell Elite 4200 scope

Under license from EOTech, Bushnell also produced Holosight, a polymer-cased non-magnifying holographic weapon sight that generates an illuminated virtual crosshair that appears to be floating in front of the gun in perfect alignment.[26][27][28][29] The Holosight line was discontinued in 2009.

Bushnell introduced the AR Optics 1-4 scope in 2018. It has a 30mm tube and has an objective lens diameter of 24mm. It has caliber-specific reticles that are illuminated for use in low-light. The AR Optics 1-4 is intended for use with modern sporting rifles.[30]


Bushnell Point 5 GPS device

Bushnell produces WeatherFX personal weather stations for hikers, campers, and others who can use it to keep informed of potentially hazardous weather issues while away from home.[31]

Bushnell created two GPS products in 2006 that are the first such devices to integrate aerial and satellite imagery into the display.[32] They also have integrated XM radio to provide real-time weather data and can overlay weather maps and weather radar info.[33][34] In 2007 the Onix 400 GPS unit won the "Best of the Best" award from Field & Stream magazine.[35]

Bushnell also has a line of simple GPS devices called Backtrack. They allow users to set up to five locations (depending on the model) and forget about the device until they have to return. The device then uses a digital compass and basic GPS technology to return to the set location.[36]

Bushnell sells SolarWrap and SolarBook solar-cell charging stations for small electronic devices. The SolarWrap wraps around a battery like a scroll when in storage and is unrolled when in use. The SolarBook flips out like the page of an open book.[37]

Radar guns[edit]

Bushnell Speedster radar guns are designed for athletes, coaches, trainers, etc. to track speed with an accuracy of +/- 1 mile per hour (1.6 km/h) within a range of 1,500 feet (460 m).[23]


  1. ^ a b c Bayot, Jennifer (March 25, 2005). "David Bushnell, 92, Importer of Affordable Binoculars, Dies". New York Times. Retrieved 25 September 2017.
  2. ^ "Wind Point Partners". Wppartners.com. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  3. ^ a b MidOcean Partners and Management Announce Acquisition Of Bushnell Outdoor Products, Inc. from Wind Point Partners Archived 2007-11-11 at the Wayback Machine., a Press release from bushnell.com
  4. ^ a b Nathanson, Ari (15 August 2005). "Wind Point Adds Michaels To Bushnell". BuyOuts. United States.
  5. ^ a b c d Windham, Rick (24 August 2007). "Tune up time for the upcoming dove season". The North Platte Telegraph. Nebraska.
  6. ^ Bushnell Acquires Simmons from skinnymoose.com
  7. ^ ATK Completes Acquisition of Bushnell Group Holdings, Inc Archived November 4, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ "Bushnell Performance Optics". Bushnell Performance Optics. Archived from the original on 2001-07-24. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  9. ^ a b "Simmons Optics". Simmons Optics. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  10. ^ "Millett Sights". Millett Sights. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  11. ^ "Browning Sports Optics". Browning Sports Optics. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  12. ^ "Bushnell Golf". Bushnell Golf. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  13. ^ "Butler Creek". Butler Creek. Archived from the original on 2013-03-23. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  14. ^ "Hoppe's". Hoppes.com. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  15. ^ "Stoney Point". Stoney Point. Archived from the original on 2013-03-04. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  16. ^ "Tasco". Tasco. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  17. ^ "Uncle Mike's". Uncle-mikes.com. Archived from the original on 2013-03-05. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  18. ^ "Uncle Mikes Law Enforcement". UncleMikesLE.com. Archived from the original on 2013-01-15. Retrieved 2013-02-27.
  19. ^ Bushnell Optics Recognized For Excellence, Value By Outdoor Life Magazine Outdoor Wire Newsletter, April 18, 2007
  20. ^ Elite 4200 6-24x40 Earns Editor's Choice Award From Outdoor Life Magazine Archived December 15, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. at Bushnell web site
  21. ^ "Outdoor Life 2006 Best Buy Award Archived February 16, 2007, at the Wayback Machine." at Bushnell web site
  22. ^ Outdoor Wire Newsletter April 18, 2007
  23. ^ a b "Bushnell Takes Two OpticsPlanet Brilliance Awards". The Outdoor Wire. The Outdoor Wire Digital Network. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  24. ^ Meade Instruments Announces Sale of Simmons Brand Archived 2008-07-03 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved June 14, 2008
  25. ^ Bushnell Trophy Xtreme Spotting Scope Retrieved March 8, 2018
  26. ^ Holosight Archived October 12, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. at Bushnell web site
  27. ^ The Bushnell HOLOsight: It's Not Just for Handguns Anymore! Archived November 15, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. By Russell E. Taylor, SniperCountry, 1999
  28. ^ Holo Gets Smaller and Lighter for Rimfires - Bushnell HoloSight for guns by Clair Rees, Guns Magazine, May 2000
  29. ^ Bushnell Holosight II by Charles E. Petty, American Handgunner, September 2000
  30. ^ Staff, SI (23 July 2018). "40 All-New Tactical Optics for 2018". Shooting Illustrated. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  31. ^ "New in equipment: WeatherFX stations Archived 2009-05-26 at the Wayback Machine." in Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 28, 2007
  32. ^ Charlie Anderson, "Bushnell looks to find a place in the crowded GPS market" (December 1, 2006). Kansas City Business Journal.
  33. ^ More on Bushnell ONIX 400 at Navigadget February 23, 2007
  34. ^ Bushnell ONIX 400 CR at GPSreview.net
  35. ^ Outdoor Wire Newsletter August 16, 2007
  36. ^ "Bushnell Launches Pint-Sized Backtrack GPS Point 3 And 5". GeekyGadgets. Retrieved 26 August 2010.
  37. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2015-09-06. Retrieved 2016-02-09.

External links[edit]