Wednesday, September 2, 2009

USA:Gridiron completes acquisition of Van Dyke's Taxidermy


Gridiron Capital, LLC and Cabela's Inc announced they have closed on the sale of Van Dyke's Taxidermy, a division of Cabela's Inc., to McKenzie Sports Products, LLC, a Gridiron portfolio company.

Van Dyke's Taxidermy is a leading supplier of taxidermy products and supplies and has built a solid reputation of quality, innovation, breadth of product selection and great customer service with individual taxidermists, taxidermy studios and taxidermy schools over its 60 years of operation. Van Dyke's Taxidermy will continue to operate out of its current manufacturing facility in Woonsocket, South Dakota.

"Van Dyke's Taxidermy is a great addition to McKenzie," said Gridiron Capital's Managing Partner, Tom Burger. "Van Dyke's has a long-standing reputation for quality products and top-notch customer service in its niche market. We look forward to partnering with Van Dyke's senior leadership team to improve customer service and grow the industry."

Van Dyke's offers more than 14,000 items across a wide array of taxidermy products, tools and supplies and is one of the leading manufacturers of glass eyes in the world. The Company employs an in-house sculptor and contracts with other sculptors to produce many of the foam manikins it sells. Van Dyke's also produces many of the chemicals used throughout the taxidermy process and maintains on-site wood-working and welding shops. Customers can purchase Van Dyke's taxidermy products through the catalog and on the brand's Web site (

"We are thrilled with the opportunity to add a brand such as Van Dyke's to McKenzie's business," said McKenzie's Chairman, Kevin McKenzie. "We are excited by the opportunity to work with the team at Van Dyke's and to continue to expand its footprint in the taxidermy market."

"We have been very proud to have had Van Dyke's taxidermy business as part of the Cabela's family for more than a decade," said Tommy Millner, Chief Executive Officer of Cabela's. "When the prospect of this sale first came up, we knew McKenzie would be the perfect home for this great company. The opportunities McKenzie brings are exciting for Van Dyke's loyal employees and customers, as well as for the taxidermy industry as a whole."

"As it relates to our third-quarter results, we do not expect the cash proceeds from the sale or the resulting gain to have a material impact," Millner added.

McKenzie Sports Products, LLC, headquartered in Granite Quarry, North Carolina, is the premier designer and manufacturer of taxidermy forms and supplies used to mount trophies harvested by hunters and fishermen.

Gridiron Capital, LLC, headquartered in New Canaan, Connecticut, is a private equity firm focused on creating value by acquiring and building middle-market manufacturing, service and specialty consumer companies in the United States and Canada.

Cabela's Incorporated, headquartered in Sidney, Nebraska, is a leading specialty retailer, and the world's largest direct marketer, of hunting, fishing, camping and related outdoor merchandise.


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