Vermont-based fly-fishing and outdoor equipment retailer Orvis announced recently that it is buying Scientific Anglers and Ross Reels from 3M. According to a press release, both of the businesses will continue to operate independently after the transaction, which is expected to be finalized after the second quarter.

3M, formerly known as the Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company, is a large multinational corporation that employs over 84,000 people worldwide. It acquired Ross Reels in late 2010 and along with Scientific Anglers, holds a significant influence in the manufacture of lines and reels. The purchase by Orvis will undoubtedly make waves in the industry.

“Our goal is for Scientific Anglers to be the world leader in fly lines, leaders and tippet, and for Ross to be the leading innovator in American-made fly reels,” said Jim Lepage, newly appointed President of both businesses, in a statement. “We plan to maintain strong investment in R&D at both businesses and we intend to bolster their sales and distribution resources here in the U.S. and build both brands internationally.”

Details of the transaction have not been disclosed but Lepage did state that Orvis will not carry Scientific Anglers-brand products in its stores and online outlets or vice-versa. Instead, Lepage said that, “”Each brand must remain focused on being the leading innovator in their respective product categories and distribution channels.Maintaining that clarity will be the key to our success.”

Founded in 1856, Orvis is a giant in the outdoor industry and contributes significantly to conservation efforts every year. Orvis also maintains numerous fly-fishing and wingshooting schools across the nation and is a major force behind a revival of sporting traditions and lifestyles.

Image from bugeaters on the flickr Creative Commons

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