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

SALTY

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While this is entirely speculation and we are obviously not privy to contractual details, but ponder this:

Query whether or not LT and/or AD have been contractually barred from designing, marketing or otherwise participating in the knife industry for a term? This is known as a covenant against competition or "non-compete clause."

The truth is that none of us really know the insider nuts and bolts of the deal; we shall see.
 
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awesome Mod in the CS forums who sadly is not there anymore
Yeah , but worse than sad , IMO . :mad::thumbsdown::thumbsdown:

It's a major reason I can't take the new CS seriously , including their YouTube .

They really need to return to two way communication , as Mod on their own dang subforum .

Show some guts , wade through the haters and trolls to reach your best fans and customers .

If you won't stand up , it's hard to want to defend you .

Big stick man ain't gonna do it . Un-gag LT and AD .
 

rje58

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I agree with this (quoted below)! In my almost 50 years in the workforce, one of the clearest and most indisputable lessons I have learned is that good results come from good employees. However, many companies don't know a good employee when they have one, and managers and supervisors often prefer to manage by their own personal preferences other than what is good for the company. I had a co-worker who was smart, hard-working, always took initiative and was a fast learner. She was such a pleasure to work with! When I was training others, sometimes they would be so complacent that I would have to REQUEST that they take notes, but I only had to teach her ONCE how to do something and she would run with it. But when the economy started slipping, guess who they laid off? Yep - her. I told her that if I was a business owner, I would hire her myself, and I meant it. But I was just an employee myself, and a non-managerial one by choice.

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.

I don't agree that "all business is personal". Sometimes "business is business". You can't survive and thrive in business on kind thoughts. That doesn't mean that you can't be considerate and thoughtful - but sometimes you get between a rock and a hard place and hard decisions must be made. Not immoral or unethical decisions, but awkward, uncomfortable and disconcerting ones, at times....
 

herisson

Apple slicing rocking chair dweller
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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.
This is exactly what I have a hard time understanding. Did it have to be done so brutally ? From one day to the other, with no communication from the boss towards the people who rowed his boat for years ? That's really bad.
 

Quiet

"That guy"
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This is exactly what I have a hard time understanding. Did it have to be done so brutally ? From one day to the other, with no communication from the boss towards the people who rowed his boat for years ? That's really bad.

In my professional experience, I will say that there are a few reasons why layoffs are usually enacted in this manner, from a security and operations perspective. If you told people they were going to be let go at say, the end of the week, or next week, suddenly you have a bunch of people who might do any manner of damage out of spite, who are angry at being let go around Christmas, etc. Sure, sure, they are all great people, however, there's a reason why Insider Threat training is so prevalent now in workforce training packages. Even good people can have a serious lapse in judgement during an emotional moment, like say, being notified that they just got fired, possibly without a severance package during a global pandemic.

So, it's Monday, Lynn comes out into the central cubical area and gathers all of his employees up. He tells people that Friday is the last day for everyone and then goes back to his office, thinking it's handled. Ok, so what's to stop someone from going back to their desk and making a copy of every piece of documentation they have and taking it with them in a briefcase at the end of the day, or on a DVD-R? Maybe the IT guy is mad, so he deletes everything on the servers, and wipes the backups? The email goes out to the guys at the Warehouse, so that afternoon, they start stuffing whatever they want in their bags, dude pulls his truck around to the loading dock and starts stacking boxes of swords to sell on Ebay next week when his bills come due?

These are merely speculations, but they are all based on experience and facts. In disclosure, my own industry, if you worked with anything at all sensitive, you are usually walked out the door by Security when you turn in your two-weeks notice, and aren't even allowed back to your desk. They pack up your personal things later and get them to you. It's just not worth the risk to keep you around, even if it's a friendly separation.
 

timberweasel

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Glad I scooped up a CS American Lawman when I did.

RIP Cold Steel. Best wishes in the future LT. I would love to see Demko at the helm of his own mass manufacturer knife co.
 

Boru13

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Yeah , but worse than sad , IMO . :mad::thumbsdown::thumbsdown:

It's a major reason I can't take the new CS seriously , including their YouTube .

They really need to return to two way communication , as Mod on their own dang subforum .

Show some guts , wade through the haters and trolls to reach your best fans and customers .

If you won't stand up , it's hard to want to defend you .

Big stick man ain't gonna do it . Un-gag LT and AD .
Cheer up buckaroo, ya still got that Tri-Ad Lock you’re always going on about ;)
 

Hackenslash

Don't feed the Trolls
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While this is entirely speculation and we are obviously not privy to contractual details, but ponder this:

Query whether or not LT and/or AD have been contractually barred from designing, marketing or otherwise participating in the knife industry for a term? This is known as a covenant against competition or "non-compete clause."

The truth is that none of us really know the insider nuts and bolts of the deal; we shall see.
"Non-competes" are such a standard part of business practice I'd be shocked if there weren't binding agreements in place for both LT and AD. During the period of time they're under retainer with with GSMO, LT and AD are almost certainly barred from making knives for anyone else. There may be an exception for AD's existing custom business as that existed alongside his agreement with CS.

When the retainer period runs out there's usually a period of time (2 to 5 years) where the non-compete is still in place.

I need to look up the Scorpion Lock and Shark Lock patents and see if those are held solely by AD or if CS was a partner.

Edit: Yeah, CS is the Assignee or Applicant for most of AD's patents.
 
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herisson

Apple slicing rocking chair dweller
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Quiet Quiet Makes sense. OK, more speculation. Could also be that initially a smooth transition from CS to GSMO was planned with the employees keeping their jobs. To avoid the problems you mention, LT could have been bound by a "non disclosure" clause about the sale. This plan went down the drain when Gridiron bought GSM. The communication is so bad, so cobbled together (those two miserable videos !) that I can't help thinking something went sideways.
 

Steely_Gunz

Got the Khukuri fevah
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While this is entirely speculation and we are obviously not privy to contractual details, but ponder this:

Query whether or not LT and/or AD have been contractually barred from designing, marketing or otherwise participating in the knife industry for a term? This is known as a covenant against competition or "non-compete clause."

The truth is that none of us really know the insider nuts and bolts of the deal; we shall see.

Oh I have absolutely no doubt that they were forced to sign an NC. That's pretty standard. Hell, those are weaponized across almost all large conglomerates. I knew two sales reps working for a manufacturer that was purchased by a big buying group who had the audacity to have grown old and demanded a reasonable payday for their sales rep performance. They were both presented with the choice of signing an NC or being fired (corporate inside intel protection and all that, supposedly). One guy didn't sign it, and they booted him straight away. The other one signed it, and they fired him anyway. The NC keeps him from doing anything in the industry that could be related to his former employer. This multi-billion dollar group touches EVERYTHING in the industry. He was effectively shut out of his profession. 63 year old grandpa trying to sell cars for a year.

Both of those gentlemen were fantastic reps and friends to my business and family. We actually dropped doing business with their former employer over this. So $425,000 lost in sales, just by us and others followed suit, every. single. year. People matter.

But I digress. Yeah, I would bet a minty Carbon V Trailmaster that LT and AD aren't going to be able to do much on their own for a decent amount of time. GSM really doesn't need their talent as they have all he IP thats easy to crank out, but they can't afford their competition either.
 
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LCT would have named it something like the "TR Big Stick." I can just imagine him wailing away at some ripe c antelopes in the promotional vid.

I think Teddy and Lynn would've been buds.

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.

When I was in grad school, I worked in retail for Oakley (the sunglasses company). In 2007, the company sold to Luxottica (the largest eyewear company in the world). Jim Jannard, the CEO, founded the company out of the back of his car in the late 70s. The sale was worth $2.1 billion, and Jannard owned somewhere around 65% of Oakley's stock. He turned around and started Red Camera company, which are now some of the most popular cameras for professional digital cinematography. Oakley has generally managed to keep its own identity and "personality" intact.

While this is entirely speculation and we are obviously not privy to contractual details, but ponder this:

Query whether or not LT and/or AD have been contractually barred from designing, marketing or otherwise participating in the knife industry for a term? This is known as a covenant against competition or "non-compete clause."

The truth is that none of us really know the insider nuts and bolts of the deal; we shall see.

Considering Demko Knives is an independent brand that you can currently buy knives from, I don't think there's any chance AD is covered by a non-compete that prevents him from running his own brand. As for Lynn, he's probably under one, which doesn't really matter since selling Cold Steel is a clear signal that he wants to start getting out of the business.
 

Quiet

"That guy"
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Quiet Quiet Makes sense. OK, more speculation. Could also be that initially a smooth transition from CS to GSMO was planned with the employees keeping their jobs. To avoid the problems you mention, LT could have been bound by a "non disclosure" clause about the sale. This plan went down the drain when Gridiron bought GSM. The communication is so bad, so cobbled together (those two miserable videos !) that I can't help thinking something went sideways.

Those are all possibilities, however, as it was mentioned here by a couple different folks, if the new owner company already has say, warehouse staff, and admin assistants, and an IT department, etc.; it makes everyone who did those jobs at the purchased company redundant. They would have been laid off in any case. It's just compounded by the fact that the new company is moving operations to a different state altogether, and (speaking absolutely as politely and objectively as I can) if you weren't a designer (Demko) or innovator (LT), then it wouldn't have been worth the financial outlay to move those people to Texas. Why pay thousands moving, say, a warehouse worker to Texas, when you could just hire a local at $19 an hour or whatever it is? No one at Sold Steel was irreplaceable other than AD and LT, which is why they were all let go. So, it absolutely sucks that this happened three weeks before Christmas. However, it was going to happen anyway, and moving into the new year might have brought new tax or cost ramifications the company didn't want to deal with.

You DO bring up a good point about GSM's sale to Gridiron, who knows how that gummed up what might have been a very delicate, well planned transition?
 
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o_O Yeah . I'm fairly sure they'll continue with the Tri-ad lock models , but will they still have decent steel / HT and everything else that makes a great knife ? :confused:

Time will tell.
You'd think if they were going to continue having knives made in the same factories, by the same people, in the same countries, to the same standards, they would say so. That would go much further to stop the sky from falling than the lame videos. The fact that they aren't saying that means a lot.
 
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