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Thursday, 03 December 2020 12:13

Cold Steel Knives sold

Written by

After 40 years of building, promoting and running Cold Steel Knives, Founder Lynn Thompson has sold his company to GSM Outdoors, the company responsible for a number of outdoors brands such as Stealth Cam and Crossfire Gear.

Until now, GSM has had a great number of hunting and shooting related companies producing everything from scent reducing products to truck accessories but has not had any specific cutlery producing companies.  Purchasing Cold Steel will round out their offerings nicely, and fill a void in the company’s offerings through it’s various brands.

As with any purchase, there is great speculation as to what will become of Cold Steel Knives- like them or hate them, it’s hard to argue with their variety of offerings and quality, especially considering their pricing.  Everyone seems to have an opinion on Cold Steel and/or Lynn Thompson’s marketing methods.

Some speculation exists that Cold Steel quality will be cheapened down to be sold exclusively in big box stores, like has happened with some other brands- Taylor Cutlery’s “reinvention” of Schrade and other brands are excellent examples of how new ownership can ruin a good product.

Personally, I think that Cold Steel may founder in the short term without the vision of Lynn Thompson at the helm, but will eventually continue in the same vein we have come to know from Cold Steel.  It is not yet known what, if any involvement Thompson will have in the future, but GSM is well known for allowing it’s properties to continue “business as usual” and does not appear (at least so far) to have any agendas regarding the brand.

  Also, despite the SHOT Show 2021 having been cancelled due to concerns around COVID 19, I think that under new management, we may see a return of Cold Steel to the largest shooting, hunting and law enforcement trade show in the world, which would be, at least for me, very welcome.  Due to a dispute in booth size, Cold Steel has been boycotting SHOT in recent years.

Got any thoughts on Cold Steel, GSM, their brands, or their future?  Let us know in our forum!

Grant Lamontagne

As the founder of Multitool.org Grant has been a collector of Swiss Army Knives and multitools for over 25 years, and a user for over 40 years. 

With a day job working in the field, either out in the woods or on industrial sites, Grant uses tools every day for all manner of different purposes.

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