Ever heard of GSM Outdoors? They just bought Cold steel.

rje58

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Dec 21, 2013
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I understand your frustration with some of the other members and their posts, but this just seems like baiting and bashing - kind of the opposite, but no less uncalled for, IMO - than the 'whiny apologies'.

This is EXACTLY the point I've been making. Exactly!!! Lynn Thompson is bought, paid for, and owned now, and his new masters said:

"Listen up, peon. We want you to make a video telling your fans not to run. Convince them it's all fine, nothing to see here, greater heights, all of that boilerplate stuff. Also, you've been an embarrassment and sorry, but our shareholders* won't tolerate that, so we need you to apologize to anyone who's been offended by you, so maybe they'll buy from us in the future and we can make some money. And if you're a good little employee, we'll have Brad the Cold Steel Brand Manager pat you on the head and say "good boy!". Now, smile when you deliver our message. We Have Spoken."



* Who own you now.
 

Quiet

"That guy"
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I understand your frustration with some of the other members and their posts, but this just seems like baiting and bashing - kind of the opposite, but no less uncalled for, IMO - than the 'whiny apologies'.

Your concern is noted, but entirely incorrect. It's not baiting, it's also not bashing. I myself have made fun of Lynn Thompson many times in the past, and will most likely do so in threads in the future. However, I have met and spoken with him a few times, and I've watched most of Cold Steel's dumb, hilarious videos. I ultimately respect the guy and what he built with his personality, showmanship, and business acumen.

So, with that in mind, let me say this. If you have ever watched a Cold Steel video, or videos of others speaking with Lynn, or ever spoken with him in person, then you would know 100% that that video was entirely out of character for LT. I cannot imagine a universe where he enjoyed making it, his delivery makes it clear that he was given a script and told to read it and not deviate from it (from people who own him now). That's why so many people are calling it a "hostage video", because that's what it is. In doing so, GSM has made it clear that they intend to divorce the personality of LT from the brand of Sold Steel, and whether you like that or not is entirely up to you.

Personally, I don't believe he's going to stick around, and won't have any significant input into future products but hey, I'll welcome being wrong if that turns out to be the case.
 
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4pj3b7.jpg
 

rje58

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I'm not taking issue with your most recent reply (quote at bottom(2)). What I personally think was probably uncalled for (and the pot calling the kettle black, so to speak, as the opposite extreme of the 'whiny apologists') was the tone and insults, which I have bolded in your original post that I responded to, below:

Quiet said:
This is EXACTLY the point I've been making. Exactly!!! Lynn Thompson is bought, paid for, and owned now, and his new masters said:

"Listen up, peon. We want you to make a video telling your fans not to run. Convince them it's all fine, nothing to see here, greater heights, all of that boilerplate stuff. Also, you've been an embarrassment and sorry, but our shareholders* won't tolerate that, so we need you to apologize to anyone who's been offended by you, so maybe they'll buy from us in the future and we can make some money. And if you're a good little employee, we'll have Brad the Cold Steel Brand Manager pat you on the head and say "good boy!". Now, smile when you deliver our message. We Have Spoken."

Saying someone is bought and paid for is one thing - but "his new masters"? Really? The parts I bolded sound more like the way you would talk about a dog than a successful business person: "pat you on the head and say "good boy"...

I am not taking sides in this debate, I'm just saying that if you're calling out other posters for their comments, you would be well served to hold yourself to a higher standard than theirs. Just my opinion, which I realize now I probably should have kept to myself.

(2)
Your concern is noted, but entirely incorrect. It's not baiting, it's also not bashing. I myself have made fun of Lynn Thompson many times in the past, and will most likely do so in threads in the future. However, I have met and spoken with him a few times, and I've watched most of Cold Steel's dumb, hilarious videos. I ultimately respect the guy and what he built with his personality, showmanship, and business acumen.

So, with that in mind, let me say this. If you have ever watched a Cold Steel video, or videos of others speaking with Lynn, or ever spoken with him in person, then you would know 100% that that video was entirely out of character for LT. I cannot imagine a universe where he enjoyed making it, his delivery makes it clear that he was given a script and told to read it and not deviate from it (from people who own him now). That's why so many people are calling it a "hostage video", because that's what it is. In doing so, GSM has made it clear that they intend to divorce the personality of LT from the brand of Sold Steel, and whether you like that or not is entirely up to you.

Personally, I don't believe he's going to stick around, and won't have any significant input into future products but hey, I'll welcome being wrong if that turns out to be the case.
 

Nepling00

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Apr 24, 2020
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All of us at some point are going to have to choose or be forced to move on. I know this is concerning to cold steel fans, but there is a lot of talent out there for cold steel to work with and move forward. Most major knives companies are collaborating with talented designers to make great things. Hopefully, this is the direction the new owners choose to go.
 

Quiet

"That guy"
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I'm not taking issue with your most recent reply (quote at bottom(2)). What I personally think was probably uncalled for (and the pot calling the kettle black, so to speak, as the opposite extreme of the 'whiny apologists') was the tone and insults, which I have bolded in your original post that I responded to, below:



Saying someone is bought and paid for is one thing - but "his new masters"? Really? The parts I bolded sound more like the way you would talk about a dog than a successful business person: "pat you on the head and say "good boy"...

I am not taking sides in this debate, I'm just saying that if you're calling out other posters for their comments, you would be well served to hold yourself to a higher standard than theirs. Just my opinion, which I realize now I probably should have kept to myself.

(2)

Edited to be polite.

Let me clarify my position for you. I am speaking of Lynn Thompson the way I am because I'm disappointed in his decision to be a paid for husk of a front man. If he'd been the guy he's always says he is, he'd have taken the check, tossed deuces and said "Thanks, and make that video yourself!" and walked out the door. He didn't, so that's on him. He was a self-made man...and now he's an employee, and will be taking orders from people who don't care about what he wants, or anything other than the bottom line. I know it's crazy, but people ARE allowed to hold multiple opinions and viewpoints all at the same time. I am able to respect him for creating Sold Steel, while still being disappointed that he's now a propped up cardboard cutout that this company is only keeping around so they can keep the fanbase he built around.
 
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Steely_Gunz

Got the Khukuri fevah
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The last couple of videos almost remind me of how when there was a bit of a hostile take over of Men's Warehouse a few years ago. The deep gravely voiced "You're going to like the way you look, I guarantee it." guy was the founder. He was pushed out, they did a few transition slogans using similar verbiage and now none of the commercials use a catch phrase makes me think of a place where I can go get an off the rack suit for a couple hundred dollars but at least the owner of the company promises it won't hang off my frame like a refrigerator box.

To my mind, this is the first buy out of the information age where the founder was front and center, visible, and the company actively selling its personality as part of the package. LT is lightning in a bottle. I dunno how you mass package that and make it both genuine and profitable for investors. To be honest, when this all started, I really didn't care, but delving into this a bit more, I'm actually a bit melancholy about it. It's almost like Lynn died, but obviously I know that's not true. I hope he has decades left doing what he love.
 
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I feel the video is just 100% scripted damage control. This is 100% speculation, but I think GSM may have bought CS a while ago but they were acting more like a silent partner. But with GSM being acquired themselves recently; push came to shove and someone higher up wanted GSM instantly at the forefront. Otherwise there would have been a video way before this fiasco of the community figuring it out themselves.
 

Lorien

Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
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Dec 5, 2005
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20,662
@TiCKed
Great post and one glossed over by those not versed in the family business way of doing things.

Mine is an interesting one. My grandfather started the business, but really, by the time he had started it my dad was the golden goose doing the work and making the business grow. So while we are a 3rd generation business, its more like a 2.5.

I am the one filling my dad's leadership shoes, and I can tell you without a doubt, this business will NOT be as grand as it is even right now. It's can't be. I brought up in it, groomed for it, and have by all measures made sure it has prospered on my watch. However, the growth and success was due to savvy and strategy not raw passion and talent. I can job cost us into a profit. I can negotiate terms and supply chains with the best of them. However, I simply don't have the skill set to just down in the mud and do it the way my dad does it and has done it for 45 years.

The greatest level of passion will almost always follow the founder to his grave. Im just incredibly blessed to have a younger brother 20 years my junior who has my dad's technical skills so that I can concentrate on the back end.

LT is Cold Steel at its heart. Thats not what is on paper, but the life blood of that company flowed through his veins.

The Land and the King are One.
 
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I just wanted to add that a company is more then just one man, it's all the people who work there. When I needed a missing pocket clip for my used Recon it wasn't LT that helped me get one and have it mailed to me for free. It was the awesome Mod in the CS forums who sadly is not there anymore. That simple kind gesture turbo charged my love for the brand and I went out that very night a bought a new knife.

CS had people working there for years that loved the brand and the lifestyle. You are not going to get the same energy from someone when it's "Just a job". Good employee's takes years to develop and all that work has been wiped out over night.
 

Steely_Gunz

Got the Khukuri fevah
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I just wanted to add that a company is more then just one man, it's all the people who work there. When I needed a missing pocket clip for my used Recon it wasn't LT that helped me get one and have it mailed to me for free. It was the awesome Mod in the CS forums who sadly is not there anymore. That simple kind gesture turbo charged my love for the brand and I went out that very night a bought a new knife.

CS had people working there for years that loved the brand and the lifestyle. You are not going to get the same energy from someone when it's "Just a job". Good employee's takes years to develop and all that work has been wiped out over night.

100%
The biggest thing I fight is keeping good employees. It's not a money thing. It's a lifestyle of the job thing. When I get a good employee I pay them well, offer whatever perks I can afford, and I have their backs. I actually think that last one is what they appreciate most. They know they are valued above the dollar they bring in. They know that they have full rights to leave a job if they feel it is unsafe or beyond their scope of expertise. They know that we as business owners understand that they have families and that making time for that is important to us as well.

This is why I won't ever sell my business. My brother can have my shares when I'm done. I'll assist how I can, but I never want to be the guy that shutters the doors and tells everyone to go home. Whoever coined the term, "It's nothing personal, it's just business" is a clinical sociopath. All business is personal on some level. I hope those nice folks in CA land on their feet.
 
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