Lifetime Products, a Utah-based manufacturer of sporting goods equipment, has acquired the assets of Pennsylvania-based Emotion Kayaks, adding the company’s kayak line to Lifetime’s line of watersports products.
“This was a great deal for Emotion and its dealers and reps, and an opportunity to have Emotion become the brand it deserves to be,” says Emotion founder Tom Strauss. “It’s exactly what we were waiting for. We always worked with contract manufacturers and we just kept growing out of their capacity. I’m blown away by the state of the art processes and systems at Lifetime — it’s far beyond anyone we’ve ever seen in terms of manufacturing.”
Lifetime has agreed to purchase all of Emotion Kayaks’ assets, including its intellectual property, trademark portfolio, manufacturing equipment, inventory and its retailer contracts. Kayak products previously distributed by Emotion Kayaks will be manufactured at Lifetime’s headquarters and manufacturing facility in Clearfield, Utah.
“With the recent tax incentive from the Governor’s Office of Economic Development we received to expand our manufacturing capabilities in Utah, we will be expanding our blow-molding facilities,” says Lifetime president Richard Hendrickson. “These new facilities will be used to manufacture more kayaks to meet demand for this growing product line.”
Adds Strauss: “They have tremendous capacity potential for on-time shipments and their focus is on producing the highest quality products possible. People will also see a major push on product development – we’re in the process of creating many of the products our dealers and reps have been asking for that we simply did not have the funds for before.”
Strauss adds that it will also be the same great team consumers and dealers are accustomed to. “Many of our dealer support and customer service staff are moving to Utah, and are excited by it,” he says.
“One of the main reasons I entered into this agreement was the people I met at Lifetime,” he adds. “From the president to the office staff and sales team, these people are simply as good as they come. They are so much like us in terms of family and fun, and have the same motto of work hard/play hard.”
Emotion Kayaks has strong brand recognition in the industry and offers a variety of kayak equipment and accessories. Over the years, Emotion Kayaks has received various awards for their designs, including the 2010 Outside Magazine “Gear of the Year” winner.
“When we combine the designs, brand and specialty channel distribution of Emotion with our manufacturing model with global capabilities, we have a recipe for great success and growth in kayaks,” says Hendrickson.
Strauss will be join the Lifetime team and play a key role in the transition and new category development. This kayak product addition will complement Lifetime’s watersports lineup, which currently includes sit-inside, sit-on-top, tandem and youth kayaks, as well as paddleboards.
Currently Lifetime kayaks are available in sporting goods retailers nationwide. Celebrating its 25th anniversary, the company was established in 1986 and is privately held with products sold in 58 countries. It is also the world’s leading manufacturer of polyethylene folding tables, chairs, and residential basketball hoops.