Rock/Creek Outfitters Sold To Uncle Dan’s Outfitters

Friday, April 20, 2018

Rock/Creek Outfitters Inc. today announced that the company has been purchased by Uncle Dan’s Outfitters, a subsidiary of Camping World Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: CWH).


An independent specialty outdoor retailer, Rock/Creek provides outdoor gear from top brands for sports including kayaking, rock climbing, camping and hiking.

In additional to a robust online store, the company operates six brick-and-mortar locations in Chattanooga, Franklin and Cleveland, Tn., and a seasonal outpost near Benton, Tn.


“We believe in the Rock/Creek brand. It’s been a good thing for Chattanooga for more than 30 years, and it will continue to be a community-based, hyper-focused retailer in the outdoor specialty market,” said Chad Wykle, a co-owner of Rock Creek. “While our industry has been challenged in the past five years, 2017 was another growth year for Rock/Creek. Partnering with Uncle Dan’s will give us the horsepower to build upon our continuing success and to expand our regional and online presence, while delivering the same level of quality — from the same passionate team — to every customer we serve.”


Wykle and co-owner Jonathan Scott acquired Rock/Creek from its founders, Dawson Wheeler and Marvin Webb, in 2017. Since that time, Mr. Wheeler and Mr.Webb have remained a part of the company’s strategic leadership team and were fully engaged in the Uncle Dan’s acquisition.


“Rock/Creek’s strong legacy and team were central to this decision,” Mr. Wheeler said. “We’ve always been an opportunistic company, and this transaction provides Rock/Creek with unprecedented growth opportunities at every level. It also allows the current owners to focus on what they love: interacting with staff, customers and the community in a very hands-on way. In short, it benefits everyone and checks all the boxes.”


Uncle Dan’s, a Chicago-based outdoor gear, camping supplies and apparel retailer, was acquired in 2017 by Camping World, the nation’s largest network of RV-centric retail locations. Earlier this year, Uncle Dan’s acquired Erehwon Mountain Outfitter, a leading Midwest specialty retailer of outdoor gear and apparel. Marcus Lemonis, chairman and CEO of Camping World and star of the television reality show, “The Profit,” previously stated that Camping World’s recent string of acquisitions will strengthen his company’s efforts to build a seamless approach to the outdoor lifestyle market and expand its e-commerce reach.


Both Uncle Dan’s and Erehwon were established in 1972 as specialty outdoor retailers. Like Rock/Creek, the two companies value a small-business mentality that supports the communities in which they operate and fosters healthy growth of the outdoor recreation market. Uncle Dan’s, Erehwon and Rock/Creek will continue to operate as individual brands and will maintain their own identities. Their customers can expect the same experience and quality of service that they have always known.


“Uncle Dan’s, Erehwon and Rock/Creek are wholly aligned both in terms of culture and strategic objectives,” said Colin Moynihan, the general manager of Uncle Dan’s and Erehwon. “By bringing our like-minded businesses together, we’ll find efficiencies in merchandising and back-end infrastructure, so we can focus more fully on serving our existing customers and reaching new markets. Ultimately, this transaction will help us successfully compete with corporate America’s major industry players, while maintaining our small-business values and family feel.”


FourBridges Capital advised Rock/Creek throughout the transaction process and ultimately negotiated and structured the deal.


“FourBridges was pleased to advise Rock/Creek in this transaction,” said Andy Stockett, a managing director with FourBridges. “The fact that Camping World and Uncle Dan’s would choose the Rock/Creek brand as a beachhead for expansion in the South is a testament to the vision and innovation Marvin and Dawson brought to outdoor retailing 30 years ago.”



Art Creations Hosts Art Expo 2019

Chattanooga Chamber Calendar Of Events For March 26-29

Tennessee's Unemployment Rate Hits Record Low In February


Between the nippy winds and the blooming daffodils, the signs are clear that Spring has arrived in Chattanooga. With the start of a new season of landscape changes and personal goals, Art Creations ... (click for more)

March 26, East Brainerd Chamber Council Meeting 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Chattanooga Event Center: 2193 Park Dr. Speaker: Steven Wagner, Erlanger Health System Foundation $12 ... (click for more)

The statewide unemployment rate in Tennessee dropped to a new historic low in February according to data released Thursday by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development (TDLWD). ... (click for more)


Business

Art Creations Hosts Art Expo 2019

Between the nippy winds and the blooming daffodils, the signs are clear that Spring has arrived in Chattanooga. With the start of a new season of landscape changes and personal goals, Art Creations has designed the perfect exploration into the arts, ART EXPO 2019. Whether you consider yourself an artist or the creative urge recently bubbled to the surface, Art Expo 2019 will offer ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Chamber Calendar Of Events For March 26-29

March 26, East Brainerd Chamber Council Meeting 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The Chattanooga Event Center: 2193 Park Dr. Speaker: Steven Wagner, Erlanger Health System Foundation $12 March 26, LCAA PM Regathering 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Virgola: 608 Georgia Ave. Leadership Chattanooga graduates and guests are invited to stop by for networking and to catch up with LC ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Chattanooga Firefighters Battle 2-Alarm Blaze Involving 2 Houses On Dodson Avenue Late Saturday Night

Shortly after 11 p.m. on Saturday, Chattanooga firefighters responded to a report of a house fire on Dodson Avenue. Firefighters with Engine 5 were the first on the scene. Captain Joey Smith said two houses at 610 and 612 Dodson Ave. were engulfed in flames on the backside of the structures, and the flames were spreading quickly. Captain Smith said they took hand-held ... (click for more)

Tennessee Members Of Congress Urge President To Approve Federal Disaster Assistance For 58 Tennessee Counties

Every member of Tennessee’s congressional delegation on Saturday urged President Trump to quickly approve Governor Bill Lee’s request for a major disaster declaration for the state of Tennessee to help 58 Tennessee counties impacted by flooding and severe weather in February and March. “On behalf of the State of Tennessee, we are writing to support Governor Bill Lee’s request ... (click for more)

Opinion

Growth Can Continue At Ooltewah On Septic Tanks

I want to set the record straight about growth in North Hamilton County. On Feb. 21, 2019, County Mayor Coppinger called a “reset” meeting with the residents of Ooltewah/Harrison over the proposed sewer plant in North Hamilton County. In front of this community, I stood up and specifically asked the county mayor if growth could continue in Ooltewah and Harrison on septic tanks ... (click for more)

Our Roads Need To Be Repaired For Ironman - And Response

Chattanooga being a finalist for the 2021 Ironman is great news. The business gained at the local bicycle repair shops from bent rims, busted tires and warped frames should produce some great local revenue. The local physicians should see a surge as well from the twisted ankles and busted up knees from dips, humps and pot holes on our area roads that could swallow a small child. ... (click for more)