Well, it’s now official. Bass Pro now owns Cabela’s. A topic many sportsmen and sportsgals have been wondering about since the deal was announced in Spring. Addressing the issue is this statement from Bass Pro and with it comes questions patrons of both stores may have as to the combining of services and products:
Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's, two iconic brands and leaders in the outdoor industry, have officially joined forces with a vision to become North America's premier outdoor and conservation company. The combined company is poised to provide customers with unmatched offerings spanning premier destination retail, outdoor equipment manufacturing, world-class resort destinations and more with a strong commitment to advancing conservation initiatives.
"We are excited to unite these iconic American brands to better serve our loyal customers and fellow outdoor enthusiasts," said noted conservationist and Bass Pro Shops Founder and CEO Johnny Morris. "As we move forward, we are committed to retaining everything customers love about both Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's by creating a ‘best-of-the-best' experience that includes the superior products, outstanding customer service and exceptional value our customers have come to expect. We're also deeply motivated by the potential to significantly advance key conservation initiatives."
The combined company offers outdoor enthusiasts superior products, dynamic locations and above all, outstanding customer service. Innovative experiences include Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid, the largest, most dynamic retail destination experience ever created. Located on the banks of the Mississippi River, the gigantic 52-million cubic-foot facility also contains the remarkable Big Cypress Lodge. Additional offerings include award-winning hospitality and nature-based attractions like Big Cedar Lodge, the wilderness resort in Missouri's Ozark Mountains recently recognized as the number one resort in the Midwest by Travel + Leisure for the second consecutive year. The company's manufacturing arm, White River Marine Group offers an unsurpassed collection of industry-leading brands including TRACKER®, SUN TRACKER®, NITRO®, TAHOE®, REGENCY®, MAKO®, RANGER®, TRITON®, STRATOS® and ASCEND® among others.
Conservation and introducing new audiences to the outdoors is a key focus of Morris. Last week the conservation-minded visionary opened Wonders of Wildlife National Museum and Aquarium, the largest, most immersive fish and wildlife attraction in the world. Located next to Bass Pro Shops National Headquarters in Springfield, Missouri, Wonders of Wildlife is larger than the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. With 35,000 live fish, mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds, the 350,000 square-foot complex is a wonder in and of itself. Wonders of Wildlife is a gift to future generations from Johnny Morris, establishing a significant not-for-profit conservation attraction and education center in the heart of America.
Shared love of the outdoors
Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's were each born from a love of the outdoors and share a remarkable heritage and legacy. Avid young angler Johnny Morris founded Bass Pro Shops in 1972 with eight square feet of space in the back of his father's liquor store in Springfield, Missouri, the company's sole location for its first 13 years of business. Cabela's dates back to 1961 when Dick, Mary and Jim Cabela began a mail order service for outdoor products around their kitchen table in Chappell, Nebraska. Both companies went on to become industry leaders. Together the combined company will celebrate both the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's brands while building on the rich history of both companies and looking to the future to best serve customers and outdoor enthusiasts.
As a result of this merger, customers have numerous questions, so Bass Pro issued the following most commonly asked questions.
What are the customer benefits of uniting these companies?
This is an opportunity to create a "best of the best" shopping experience for all outdoor enthusiasts. It means more selection as we are bringing together the best in fishing with Bass Pro Shops, the best in Hunting with Cabela's and the best in boating with Tracker Boats and other boating brands. Increased buying power will also help us deliver greater value to our customers. At the same time, it means continuing to provide unmatched expert service. In general, we plan to retain and grow everything customers love about both brands. As a bonus, we also plan to be a powerful, unified voice for conservation and become a stronger advocate for the outdoors and sportsmen's rights.
Will the company's name change?
We will continue celebrating and promoting both the Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's brands as we bring our two great companies together.
Will Bass Pro Shops gift cards be honored at Cabela's locations and vice versa?
Customers can exchange a Bass Pro Shops gift card to a Cabela's gift card for an equal amount and vice versa. Gift cards are exchanged at the customer service counter in either store or by contacting our online customer service centers. To exchange a Cabela's gift card that you would like to use at Bass Pro Shops, call 1-800-211-6440 to have it exchanged. To exchange a Bass Pro Shops gift card that you would like to use at Cabela's, call 1-800-237-4444 to have it exchanged. We are working to improve this process moving forward.
Will I be able to return Cabela's purchases to Bass Pro Shops locations and vice versa?
Yes, Cabela's purchases can be returned to our customer service counters at Bass Pro Shops and vice versa or by contacting our online customer service centers.
Will existing exclusive brands and products still be available at Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's?
Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's have strong national proprietary brands in several categories. Our goal is to continue developing and growing our brands to ensure we provide the same exceptional quality, service and value that customers have come to know and trust from Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's exclusive products.
Will Cabela's CLUB Visa cardholders earn points at Bass Pro Shops locations?
Yes, Cabela's CLUB Visa holders will earn 1% back on all purchases made at Bass Pro Shops and all locations that accept Visa. In addition, Cabela's CLUB Visa members will still earn 2%, 3% or 5% back on qualifying purchases at all Cabela's locations, earning points for free gear and incredible outdoor experiences. We are working on solutions to better connect the programs.
Will Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Rewards Mastercard cardholders earn points at Cabela's locations?
Yes, Bass Pro Shops Outdoor Rewards Mastercard holders will earn 1% back on all purchases made at Cabela's and all locations that accept Mastercard. In addition, you will still earn 3% or 5% back on qualifying purchases at all Bass Pro Shops locations, earning points for free gear and unique experiences. We are working on solutions to better connect the programs.
Nick Hromiak has been an outdoors and automotive writer for over 30 years. He's been published in numerous national and state-wide outdoor magazines and newspapers.