Business name: G. Loomis.
Owner: Shimano American Corp.
Director of communications: Bruce Holt.
Address: 1359 Down River Drive, Woodland.
What the business does: G. Loomis manufactures high-quality, high-performance graphite fishing rods.
Steps to build your business: Bruce Holt said his company distributes products worldwide with full sales and marketing support provided by Shimano American Corporation of Irvine, Calif. Loomis works with promotional anglers, fishing guides and numerous types of news advertising media, including magazines, websites, radio and television. The company has two sales representative groups that serve their dealer business across the entire United States. Loomis also has five international sales groups that sell and promote products outside of the U.S.
Greatest challenge: The fishing rod business is very fragmented and very competitive, Holt noted. Loomis sells high-end spinning, casting and fly rods that range in price from $185 to almost $1,200. Initially, he said, just getting an angler to try one of the rods was difficult because of cost, he said. But the company works through promotional channels to overcome that initial hesitancy with dealer events, writer educational events and consumer sports shows where consumers can experience the true difference between many of the major rod brands.
What’s ahead: Business traditionally begins to increase dramatically in February, peaking in April or May and continuing through the summer, Holt said. G. Loomis has some major new product introductions scheduled for February at the Pacific Northwest Outdoor Expo in Portland and the Bassmaster Classic in Birmingham, Ala.
Previous experience: Holt was a sports announcer in Southern Oregon before he started working at Loomis in 1985.