The homegrown outdoors company that started at Dick and Mary Cabela’s kitchen table has officially sold to its top competitor.
Bass Pro Shops closed on its $5 billion purchase of Cabela’s, the companies said Monday. That ends Cabela’s run as a standalone, Nebraska-based business. The combined company’s headquarters will be in Bass Pro’s home in Springfield, Missouri.
It’s unclear what will happen to the employees at Cabela’s former headquarters in Sidney, Nebraska, a town of about 6,800 people six hours west of Omaha. The company employed as many as 2,000 there in recent years. Bass Pro did not respond to questions from The World-Herald about what would happen next with Nebraska workers; Bass Pro has said in the past that it would keep some presence in Nebraska.
Cabela’s shareholders will receive $61.50 per share for the sale; Bass Pro is a private company.
“We look forward to growing and celebrating conservation as we work to provide our combined customer base with enhanced product offerings, unique outdoor experiences and unrivaled services,” Johnny Morris, founder and chief executive of Bass Pro Shops, said in a prepared statement Monday.
Synovus Financial Corp. on Monday also closed on its purchase of Lincoln-based World’s Foremost Bank, the Cabela’s-owned subsidiary that operated the retailer’s credit card. Synovus will offload the credit card receivables to Capital One.
The day marked the end of a two-year long roller coaster ride for Cabela’s employees, investors and residents of Sidney. It all started with Elliott Management, a New York hedge fund that declared a large stake in Cabela’s about two years ago saying it would push for changes. Those changes included a sale of the company, or parts of it.
Bass Pro announced it would buy the company last year. Then began another year of uncertainty as the deal faced regulatory rigmarole and was restructured to overcome it. The deal received final regulatory approval just this month.