Source: Angling International
Hardy & Greys – a business that has built up an almost iconic status since its formation in 1872 – has this week been placed on the market by its owner the Harris & Sheldon Group, a family-owned UK private investment group.
The sale is part of a long-term business plan by Harris & Sheldon to divest itself of the manufacturing businesses under its control.
Hardy & Greys has struggled to make a profit in the UK in recent years and a reshuffle last year saw it make 19 staff redundant at its base in Alnwick, Northumberland.
The slimming down operation also saw the departure of its Managing Director Richard Sanderson, who has subsequently taken over a similar role at Shimano Normark in the UK.
However, Ken Brewster told Angling International that following the streamlining of the business, the first six months of 2012 have been the most profitable period for the company in five years.
The ownership of Hardy & Greys is seen as an opportunity for a new owner to take control of the brand and continue to expand its export markets, which is seen as key to its continuing success.
Brewster added: “The Miller family, which owns Hardy & Greys, has always been pretty hands-off so this is an opportunity for a more hands-on tackle business to get hold of the Hardy brands. It is exciting news for the company.
“Our growth potential is in Germany, the US and new European markets,” added Brewster, who earlier this month announced the setting up of a subsidiary in France. The sale will not affect those plans and Brewster stressed that it was business as usual for the company as it searched for a new owner.
“We will not be putting the brakes on anything and all new initiatives will carry on as normal during the sale period.”
No asking price has been revealed for the company and Brewster said that there was no urgency for a quick sale. “We will wait for the right bid,” he added.