Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Shimano Buys Pearl Izumi


IRVINE, Calif. USA 2/19/08 — Bringing premium sports apparel and footwear to its offering of industry-leading cycling and fishing products, Shimano has completed its purchase of DashAmerica, Inc. (dba Pearl Izumi USA, Inc.) from Nautilus, Inc., announces David Pfeiffer, president of Shimano American Corporation. Pearl Izumi becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of Shimano’s U.S. operations, and will continue to operate from its facilities in Broomfield, Colorado and Kirchzarten, Germany.

“The acquisition brings together two companies started by Japanese families who share a passion for cycling,” said Pfeiffer. “Both have strong research and development backgrounds, offer industry leading innovations, and share an obsession with quality and performance. We’ll continue to build the respective brands and remain dedicated to the healthy independent dealer networks we’ve both enjoyed.”

Pfeiffer also noted that Pearl Izumi would be maintained as a stand-alone company with its own management team.

“Pearl Izumi is a leader in the performance sports apparel and footwear market, and we plan to keep them in that position,” Pfeiffer said. “Pearl Izumi’s design expertise creates products for the avid cycling and running enthusiasts and we’ll provide Juergen Eckmann (Pearl Izumi’s president) and his team with all of Shimano’s support and resources needed to continue that tradition.”

Eckmann said the acquisition is a great fit for both companies. “The entire team at Pearl Izumi USA and Europe are excited about opportunities and benefits we gain in becoming part of Shimano,” said Eckmann. “Shimano provides knowledge and expertise which will make our brand stronger and we in turn have a great deal of experience in performance apparel, fabric technologies and run footwear that Shimano did not previously possess.”

As part of a broad dual brand strategy, Pfeiffer states that Shimano will continue to offers its branded apparel and cycling footwear along with the Pearl Izumi apparel and cycling footwear in all markets.

Shimano’s acquisition includes Pearl Izumi’s facility in Kirchzarten, Germany, and the rights to Pearl Izumi sales and distribution throughout North and South America, Europe, Australia and select other countries. Pfeiffer notes the purchase does not include sales and distribution rights of Pearl Izumi branded products in Japan and most of Asia.

Shimano American Corporation is the U.S.-based subsidiary of Shimano, Inc. a multi-national manufacturer of bicycle components and fishing tackle. It now has operations in Irvine, Calif., Woodland, Wash., Broomfield, Colo., Peterborough, Ontario, and Kirchzarten, Germany.

“The reality is that everyone is really excited here,” said Geoff Shaffer, Pearl Izumi’s marketing director. “There were a bunch of people that came and looked at the business and a lot of them were venture capital people and that was super scary for us. We just had a meeting downstairs and the president [of Pearl Izumi] basically said that each one of those people already had a plan to sell. So we’re fired up.”

“The consumer and the retailer shouldn’t notice anything,” said Devin Walton, Shimano’s marketing manager. “Pearl, in its own right, has been an incredibly successful company with really well-developed product and good strategies; the intent in purchasing them is not to go in and change things that have made them successful. So there are no plans to go in and change anything. They will continue to operate autonomously; they have their own executive management and their own strategies in place. Their entire product lines will continue forward.”

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