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LindenTree3
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02/17/2018 05:16PM
I went to the new Gander Outdoors (old Gander Mtn) in Duluth last week.

Except for some things being re-arranged I could have sworn I was in the same store. The inventory was exactely as I remember it with the old store.
I was hoping for more camping gear and less fire arm related things, basically a stark change in all inventory selections from the old store.
I am no business man, and do not know any thing about the parent company that bought them out.
Whatever the case, I wonder how the new Gander Outdoors can make a profit if they don't drastically change the buisness model of Gander Mtn, that recently filed for bankruptcy.

My apologies Mods if this type of posting is not allowed, delete as needed.
 
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nooneuno
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02/17/2018 05:40PM
Although I have not seen one in this area I too would fail to see how it could survive against the Bass Pro conglomerate. 90% of a Gander Mtn. was foreign made clothing with some sort of camo print, nothing to make a buyer want to choose them over the competitor. Remember the Holiday superstores of days gone by, that was basically a Fleet Farm with groceries, Gander got it's roots back then and struggled to maintain footing ever since by ever increasing the footprint toward the clothing end because that is where the profit margins are best.
LindenTree3
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02/17/2018 05:51PM
Good point nooeneuno,
Never thought of that, but the store is really filled with clothing.
FullGo
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02/17/2018 06:13PM
My understanding is that they are reopening Gander Outdoors in the markets that were profitable.
Pinetree
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02/17/2018 08:08PM
We have a reopening this summer in Brainerd of Gander. Also we have a Dick's Sporting Goods opening up Wednesday in Brainerd. So there will be more competition.
02/17/2018 10:09PM
Bought out by Camping World
02/18/2018 07:45AM
They were bought out by camping world, fairly cheap I am told...then liquidated the entire inventory for a profit to another company...so they started the new business in the black...then only reopened stores that were already profitable. If that is true they should be on good financial footing at least to start. I am going to check out our store today.

I think they are selling off the land and space of the old closed buildings as profit as well.

T
02/18/2018 07:58AM
Hopefully they don’t make the same mistakes again, they tried to go heavy into Firearms but had such ridiculous prices that the inventory never moved. Their ammo prices were insane as well. They were correct in identifying a hot and very lucrative market but totally missed the ball on actually capitalizing on it by pricing themselves right out of any potential sale, at least for the savy shoppers who happen to be the buyers that buy often.
Pinetree
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02/18/2018 08:04AM
timatkn: "They were bought out by camping world, fairly cheap I am told...then liquidated the entire inventory for a profit to another company...so they started the new business in the black...then only reopened stores that were already profitable. If that is true they should be on good financial footing at least to start. I am going to check out our store today.


I think they are selling off the land and space of the old closed buildings as profit as well.


T"

Camping World itself is huge and sitting with a lot of money. Will Gander be profitable? Will see the Brainerd Gander store was like a ghost town when you shopped before.
spud
member (5)member
 
02/18/2018 08:50AM
timatkn: "They were bought out by camping world, fairly cheap I am told...then liquidated the entire inventory for a profit to another company...so they started the new business in the black...then only reopened stores that were already profitable. If that is true they should be on good financial footing at least to start. I am going to check out our store today.


I think they are selling off the land and space of the old closed buildings as profit as well.


T"


From what I understood the brand and the assets were auctioned off separately. A liquidator won the bid for the goods, and as part of that had the rights to the employees and locations to help liquidate the stuff. As far as the store locations, i believe that they were all leased and not owned, so the only ones reopening are ones that they were able to get a favorable renegotiation of the lease, as well as have the ability to have and sell the RVs in the parking lot to be able to combine CW and GO locations where possible...

I havent been into one since the Eden Prairie one close to me closed, but if the only difference it the owner and the logo on the clothes, it seems to me it is doomed to end up like GM..
02/18/2018 09:02AM
"Gander got it's roots"

A lot further back and in a different market. 1960"s it was started by a local Wilmont WI sportsman as a mail order high end firearms company. Almost taken out of business by the "gun control act 1968" they switched to general sporting goods, hunting , fishing, camping. And opened/enlarged the Wilmont business with a retail outlet. They remained a supplier of high quality gear to serious sportsmen thru the 1990's, selling limited amounts of clothing none fashion oriented. Then GM started raising prices overestimating customer opinions and desires. After loosing a large portion of business Cabelas purchased the catalog business and mailing lists mid 1990's. 1997 GM filed to reorganize (chapter 11) teamed with Holiday to rebuild and essentially became the GM most folks know today.
I do not expect much of the new organization, the only way to compete with Cabelas and Bass Pro is to under-price them. I also feel that the general sporting goods store will continue to loose sales to sports specific specialty suppliers.

Interest is because I grew up within 20 miles and visited the outlet, store received the catalogs late 60's thru the 70's, friends worked there. I do miss the old GM.

butthead
Pinetree
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02/18/2018 09:13AM
The new stores suppose to adapt or carry more merchandise that people in that area might buy. But from the Duluth report it doesn't sound like it.
02/18/2018 10:12AM
spud: "timatkn: "They were bought out by camping world, fairly cheap I am told...then liquidated the entire inventory for a profit to another company...so they started the new business in the black...then only reopened stores that were already profitable. If that is true they should be on good financial footing at least to start. I am going to check out our store today.



I think they are selling off the land and space of the old closed buildings as profit as well.



T"



From what I understood the brand and the assets were auctioned off separately. A liquidator won the bid for the goods, and as part of that had the rights to the employees and locations to help liquidate the stuff. As far as the store locations, i believe that they were all leased and not owned, so the only ones reopening are ones that they were able to get a favorable renegotiation of the lease, as well as have the ability to have and sell the RVs in the parking lot to be able to combine CW and GO locations where possible...


I havent been into one since the Eden Prairie one close to me closed, but if the only difference it the owner and the logo on the clothes, it seems to me it is doomed to end up like GM.. "


Well that’s what I get for just listening to people:)

I read today the Camping World CEO said the 3 biggest reasons that Gander failed was investing too heavily into guns...which worked well during Obama’s initial years due to paranoia about gun control (although that might change again after the most recent shooting) but died off, especially after the 2016 election, poor inventory control, and growing too fast...many of the newer stores were not profitable.

We might not see much change in our stores if they were considered profitable already, if they clear up inventory issues, that will make them more profitable.

All of that is hard for me to believe as my Lakeville Gander never seemed busy to me. I only bought stuff clearanced severely. I bought a $200 North Face jacket for $50 before they declared bankruptcy. I’ll never buy The North Face for full price. I just assume many shop like me :) Don’t know how it was ever profitable.

T
02/18/2018 11:08AM
I visited the Janesville store. Not sure what I think. Looked pretty much the same to me except a little more plain racked. Looked highly overstaffed. Not sure how they were going to pay all those employees with the amount of sales going out the door. I asked why no ice fishing gear???....and they said they weren't sure they would be open in time to sell any. At first I was glad that I'd still have a good outdoor gear supplier nearby, but I was a little disappointed by what I saw on the shelves. I hope they do some research as to what the people in their region desire and restock accordingly.
LindenTree3
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02/18/2018 12:02PM
Cowdoc,

Dissapointed is how I would sum up my Gander visit in Duluth, I walked out without spending a dime. After reading some of these posts I will go back this week to look closer to see if it has changed much from the old store.
02/18/2018 12:26PM
I saw one that has reopened south of the Twin Cities in Lakeville. I was wondering what type and quantity of fishing supplies they would restock. I may take a run down there today to check it out as it's close to a FleetFarm that I shop at.
02/18/2018 03:23PM
HighnDry: "I saw one that has reopened south of the Twin Cities in Lakeville. I was wondering what type and quantity of fishing supplies they would restock. I may take a run down there today to check it out as it's close to a FleetFarm that I shop at."

Just got back from the Lakeville location. Seemed to me they had more fishing gear than old GM while they were going belly up, but that could be perception due to the new layout. They had a decent collection of fishing gear, but I only bought some Trilene.

It appears that they do not have as much clothing as the old GM, and I did not check out their camping section. Guns? No one wants me anywhere near a gun, so I cannot comment on that, either.

Glad the new place is open, hope they do well.
02/18/2018 08:38PM
timatkn: "

I read today the Camping World CEO said the 3 biggest reasons that Gander failed was investing too heavily into guns...which worked well during Obama’s initial years due to paranoia about gun control

T"



And see that right there is a lie, gun sales didn’t slow. Ganders gun sales might have slowed because they were incredibly overpriced and people were not desperate enough to pay their insane prices but the notion that guns haven’t been selling is just wrong. Data for 2017 indicates it was right up there for most off all time, possibly the highest, either way 2016 and 2017 were the biggest years EVER for gun sales and if they couldn’t make a buck selling them they were doing something wrong. They weren’t called Gouger Mtn for nothing.
02/18/2018 08:53PM
Gouger Mountain I think that is funny
T
02/18/2018 08:54PM
Checked out the Lakeville store today.

The clothing was a lot less than before, it is in about the same physical space they had cloth8ng in before but a lot more spread out. A lot less footwear.

They have a gear shop now for repairs, adjustments, not sure what of.

They sell bikes now.

They had a small amount of home cooking wares that seemed out of place.

The camping and paddl8ng section was expanded from previous, I’ll tell ya what if you want a fancy cooler they have about everything but YETI. I don’t need one but it was cool to see the different types in person.

I liked the Hunting section better but I am biased the previous store had almost no shot shells for sale for pheasant hunting, good selection now decent prices.

Fishing section I didn’t look over well enough, but it appeared better organized and they sell live bait again. The previous store had fishing gear all over the place, they would have a section for crappies and then Musky then another 2 isles away crappie/panfish again. The little bit I saw it looked like the organization made sense.

Overall I liked it better, although I didn’t dislike the old place, I got some crazy good deals in their clearance section over the years.


T

WIMike
senior member (87)senior membersenior member
 
02/18/2018 09:55PM
Gander had two choices in its competition with BPS and Cabelas IMO--go megastore with fish tanks, taxidermy displays, etc. like their competitors or go the low price route and try to under price their competition. They did neither. They tried to charge a premium in bland, uninspired stores and they failed. The same business model is probably not going to work well as BPS/Cabelas expands. I am rooting for them though.
h20
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02/18/2018 10:35PM
yep. Its still a big box corporate store.
muddyfeet
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02/19/2018 12:47AM
Nobody has mentioned the rise of online shopping. I'm not sure about this specific market, but brick&mortar retailers that haven't adapted well to online sales have been hurting. My habits have me either buying things online, or going to wander a destination store for an hour or two(Cabelas).

I stayed at the country inn right next to the (liquidaing) Duluth gander this past summer and ended up going home with a new Kimber pistol and a seasons worth of sporting clay shotshells- both at 45% off.
nofish
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02/19/2018 10:12AM
muddyfeet: "Nobody has mentioned the rise of online shopping. I'm not sure about this specific market, but brick&mortar retailers that haven't adapted well to online sales have been hurting. My habits have me either buying things online, or going to wander a destination store for an hour or two(Cabelas).


I stayed at the country inn right next to the (liquidaing) Duluth gander this past summer and ended up going home with a new Kimber pistol and a seasons worth of sporting clay shotshells- both at 45% off. "


The online line shopping also had to really hurt Gander. They were VERY late to the game of online shopping due to some previously really bad deals they made that prohibited them from selling online until a certain date. By the time they were able to get online Cabelas and Bass Pro were already dominating in that area and I'm sure it was tough for Gander to gain much of a foot hold.

All in all Gander Mtn was very poorly run for a long time before it finally went under. They made some bad deals to avoid going under years ago and really all those deals did was secure their future demise, they just didn't know it at the time. They tried to make a come back by marketing themselves as a gun super store and going heavier into clothing but that alienated most of their core customers.

If you are into business and how to run a business using GM as a model of what NOT to do is a good place to start.
Northland
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02/19/2018 10:16AM
Ragged: "timatkn: "


I read today the Camping World CEO said the 3 biggest reasons that Gander failed was investing too heavily into guns...which worked well during Obama’s initial years due to paranoia about gun control


T"




And see that right there is a lie, gun sales didn’t slow. Ganders gun sales might have slowed because they were incredibly overpriced and people were not desperate enough to pay their insane prices but the notion that guns haven’t been selling is just wrong. Data for 2017 indicates it was right up there for most off all time, possibly the highest, either way 2016 and 2017 were the biggest years EVER for gun sales and if they couldn’t make a buck selling them they were doing something wrong. They weren’t called Gouger Mtn for nothing."


Agree. Gander in Duluth was a great place to LOOK AT guns, but not to buy them. It was easier to check it out in person, handle it, inspect it at Gander, then go buy it on gunbroker. Almost every time, the price of the gun AND the FFL transfer fee from gunbroker was less than the Gander price.

Of course, it wasn't just guns; almost everything else seemed overpriced, too.
02/19/2018 10:35AM
It's an interesting business case for both bricks-and-mortar businesses and the online retailers. Clothing, firearms, fishing and hunting accessories...the list goes on for items consumers need to size or physically inspect before launching a purchase.
02/19/2018 12:38PM
Northland: "

Agree. Gander in Duluth was a great place to LOOK AT guns, but not to buy them. It was easier to check it out in person, handle it, inspect it at Gander, then go buy it on gunbroker. Almost every time, the price of the gun AND the FFL transfer fee from gunbroker was less than the Gander price.


Of course, it wasn't just guns; almost everything else seemed overpriced, too."



I think they lost a lot of guys when they were being completely asinine with ammo prices. They were sometimes double or close to triple Fleet Farm on stuff. I remember buying some Hornady slugs at Fleet for $7.99 a box and driving 10 mins to Gander for something else and saw they had them for like $18.99 or something stupid like that.
HowardSprague
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02/19/2018 04:19PM
the Camping World CEO dude - I forget his name at the moment, he does a tv show too - seems like a tool. Said Gander would be primarily a data collection company. Doesn't seem to share anything in common with the potential customers.

Lemonis/Gander June'17 article
huntfun2
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02/19/2018 05:35PM
muddyfeet: "Nobody has mentioned the rise of online shopping. I'm not sure about this specific market, but brick&mortar retailers that haven't adapted well to online sales have been hurting. My habits have me either buying things online, or going to wander a destination store for an hour or two(Cabelas).


I stayed at the country inn right next to the (liquidaing) Duluth gander this past summer and ended up going home with a new Kimber pistol and a seasons worth of sporting clay shotshells- both at 45% off. "


Ditto - Even Cabela's is trying to figure it out. I think Cabelas was also recently bought by BassPro Shops and they're not the same store they were a year ago.
LindenTree3
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02/19/2018 06:14PM
muddyfeet:
I stayed at the country inn right next to the (liquidaing) Duluth gander this past summer and ended up going home with a new Kimber pistol and a seasons worth of sporting clay shotshells- both at 45% off. "


I took the taxi home from the Duluth airport after returning from Alaska the end of October and noticed that Gander Mtn was closed.

The taxi driver told me about the sale you mentioned and what he bought.
I was really bummed I missed out on that sale.
Jaywalker
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02/19/2018 08:36PM
HowardSprague: "the Camping World CEO dude - I forget his name at the moment, he does a tv show too - seems like a tool. Said Gander would be primarily a data collection company. Doesn't seem to share anything in common with the potential customers."
Ever been in a Camping World store? I stopped in the one in Rogers once. It made Walmart look fancy. I'm guessing they have been successful mainly from the combination of good timing (boomers retiring and hitting the road) and having little competion. I'd find it amazing if these were the guys who were going to make Gander competitive against cheaper prices online or better store experience in BP or Cabelas.
02/20/2018 07:09AM
Camping Worlds store is just the tip of the iceberg. They're primarily an RV dealership and Good Sam is also part of Camping World. I agree the store is like a Walmart and I hate Walmart, But since there is very RV specific items I sometimes have to enter the store near me.
OSLO
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02/20/2018 09:51AM
LindenTree3: "muddyfeet:
I stayed at the country inn right next to the (liquidaing) Duluth gander this past summer and ended up going home with a new Kimber pistol and a seasons worth of sporting clay shotshells- both at 45% off. "



I took the taxi home from the Duluth airport after returning from Alaska the end of October and noticed that Gander Mtn was closed.


The taxi driver told me about the sale you mentioned and what he bought.
I was really bummed I missed out on that sale."

Yeah, there were some good deals there. I got a lot of ice fishing and winter gear for over 60% off. I haven't been into the new Gander Outdoors yet.
02/20/2018 10:01AM
I helped my wife's business move out several cabinets and other business furniture from a local Gander that was closing last fall. They got the entire lot of showcases for what was probably the cost of one originally.

Personally, I got a sea to summit event XL compression sack for $10.

Regarding guns, my wife's family business is a gun store. Sales have taken a drop since early November 2016. Other shops in our area are also struggling, we're friendly competitors and occasionally share that kind of information.
LindenTree3
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02/20/2018 12:23PM
Had to pick up the wifie from the Duluth airport today so I went back to Gander Outdoors with a different set of eyes after reading some of the posts here.

Yes they sell Fat Tire bikes now and have a gear shop that I assume is for repairing bikes.
Their camping selection has expanded at least 20%, and they actually had 5 tents set up on the floor something the old Gander didn't have if I remember correctly.
I don't know much about guns or fishing gear so I can't compare any of that, there clothing did seem to be less of a selection and more spread out as someone mentioned.

All in all, I was plesantely suprised today after I used my new set of eyes.
The store was like a ghost town inside, but it was a weekday morning after a big snowfall.
Pinetree
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02/20/2018 01:19PM
One thing few chain stores have is good quality canoes and equipment, etc. but maybe that is ok - it leaves a niche for others.
 
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