Arctic Cat Acquires Motorfist
Chris Metz, new CEO for Arctic Cat (ACAT) made good on his promise from earlier this year. He announced in front of a group of over 400 Arctic Cat Dealers plus employees that Arctic Cat acquired Motorfist, a premium mountain snowmobile clothing company headquartered in Idaho. This is a strategic bolt-on alliance that represents a new era for Arctic Cat. Christopher Metz, Arctic Cat’s new CEO, announced in January, “We currently are developing our strategic growth plans. However, I can say with confidence that we will seek to spur growth through additional . . . small bolt-on acquisitions that quickly enable us to expand our expertise and capabilities, and drive even faster product innovation.” Of the marriage between the two, he stated that this is an example of “one plus one equals three” and that “[Motorfist] is a highly exciting brand”.
Motorfist’s Short Story
Motorfist was founded in 2009 by Brad Ball, an avid snowmobiler and brilliant entrepreneur with a mission to enhance the lives of snowmobilers. He accomplished this by recruiting an all-start team to help him. One of those key people is Josh Skinner, the product development manager for Motorfist. Skinner worked with Ball in 2001 when the Ball launched the Alticity Snowmobile Films series. Alticity snowmobile movies chronicalized the best of what mountain snowmobilers did to have fun in the mountains from a bone stock King Cat to a Apex Turbo. Motorfist was later born out of these early evolutionary mountain riding years. Ball knew from his experiences in the backcountry what riders needed before we knew we needed it. Because of previous experience in the textile business, he had a vision for how to deliver new innovative products.
A Great Team
Arctic Cat’s core values are a close match to Motorfist’s – they are snowmobilers and their passion for snowmobiling drives their decisions. They are both the underdog – smaller and more agile than their competitors. This move elevates the image and expertise of Arctic Cat and provides them with a substantial new growth opportunity. Arctic Cat will benefit Motorfist internationally with its extensive global distribution network.
Today, Arctic Cat was a new company. Metz is a breath of fresh air. He looks at this business as a challenge and a turn around opportunity. The company has already made big changes in their business practices, helping dealers eliminate aged inventory. Motorfist is a great example of a company that takes care of their dealers to build a strong network. Arctic Cat has realized they need a stronger dealer network and they are doing something about it. Now, their first of what will be many more acquisitions is a step forward, a sign of good things to come for Arctic Cat.