The new owners of one of Australia’s most iconic brands have talked of their pride at acquiring the business and their plans for its growth.
Colin Burdon, who owns Reidy’s Lures with his wife, Karen, bought Schneider Fishing Lines last month. The brand – a recipient of an Australian Fishing Trade Association (AFTA) Lifetime Achievement Award in 2015 – has been serving the country’s anglers since 1950.
Speaking to Angling International, Colin Burdon said: “My wife and I are extremely proud that we have two quality brands based in Darwin. Our Reidy’s Lures factory employs six people and we feel good about the fact that we make our lures there at a time when most popular baits are made overseas. Schneider Fishing Lines is a great acquisition. The name Schneider in the industry is huge and the market opens up for Reidy’s Lures because of this. Reidy’s is a small company mostly known as a maker of Barramundi lures. Although we do more than that, we have been pigeon-holed by this conception. The Schneider acquisition now opens us up to the wider fishing world.
“Since taking over Reidy’s Lures I have been guided by my friends and many other anglers who only use Schneider leader line when targeting Barramundi in the Northern Territory because of its strength, reliability and quality.”
Burdon said that there is growth to be had with Schneider, but added: “I am very much an advocate of ‘if it’s not broken don’t fix it’, so we will be intent on delivering to the market the same quality products that they are used to. We will however add to the brand, and I see a very good market in the growing billfish sector in the Top End and down the east and west coasts of Australia along with the popular tuna scene in the southern states. We also have plans to introduce it to international markets and have some things set for New Zealand as we speak.”
Burdon added that he is looking for growth for both brands. “Reidy’s has had sales in Asia and the South Pacific Islands and we are keen to continue that. Obviously we would like to get our gear into the American and European markets. We believe that we have two quality brands that have excelled in harsh Australian conditions, so to venture into bigger markets would be great.”
Burdon revealed that Schneider Fishing Lines had been on the company’s radar following a chance meeting at the AFTA trade show many years ago. “We met Kim and Jacki, the daughters of company owner, Bob Gossage, and struck up a friendship. About five years ago I mentioned to them that if their dad ever wanted to sell, then he should let us know as we would be interested.
“Last year their dad passed away so the girls and their elderly mum lost the passion for the business and decided to contact us.”
On the subject of further acquisitions. Burdon, said, half-jokingly: “I would say yes, but my wife would say no! But seriously, we would always look at any opportunities that would enhance our business.”