Over fifty years ago, the Kent Sporting Goods Company was founded as a subsidiary of Eagle Rubber Company, a manufacturer of football gear, helmets and uniforms, based in Batesville, Mississippi. In 1959, the company moved to New London, Ohio. Some of the first products to come off the manufacturing line were U.S. Coast Guard approved life jackets, golf bags, bowling bags, and outdoor lawn games and accessories.
In 1981, under new ownership, the KENT brand became a major factor in the Type I kapok commercial vest market and Type II commodity market. About a year later, a small company in Celina, Ohio, with a brand niche in water skis, ropes, and vests, approached KENT and asked them to manufacture their ski vests. This was the beginning of Kent’s quest to be a major player in the water sports, marine, and PFD (personal flotation device) industry.
Starting in 1983, the owners of Kent began to acquire the assets of many popular water sports corporations. They also expanded the business to introduce several new brands and diversified into other outdoor categories. With this significant growth, Kent Sporting Goods Company, Inc. became a major player in the water sports and outdoor markets.
Today, KENT and its’ controlled group of companies offer a multi-brand portfolio of water sports and outdoor products. These companies and brands offer innovative, well-designed, functional gear for the water sports and outdoor enthusiasts looking to satisfy their active lifestyle and water or outdoor activities.
Kent Sporting Goods Company is committed to providing our customers with safe, reliable, and user-friendly products. At all levels of the company, Kent Sporting Goods Company promotes responsibility and concern for the safety of our customers, employees, and the general public. Safety, quality, and reliability are critical performance measures for all Kent Sporting Goods Company products. It is our responsibility to understand the issues involving safety associated with our products, and to continually improve safety by:
· Maintaining product design criteria and quality controls.
· Engaging with consumers, dealers, manufacturers, professional athletes, and industry organizations.
· Staying current with new regulations, industry-best practices, and marketplace conditions.
· Understanding operating hazards for all of a product's intended and foreseeable uses.
Kent Sporting Goods Company's goal is to make each product safe for its intended purpose when properly used, while maintaining the product's quality and integrity.
WHO WE ARE - THE KENT ADVANTAGE
The Kent portfolio of companies is made up of individuals who are entrepreneurs, athletes, enthusiasts, business administrators, engineers, accountants, and just plain hard workers. We believe in the work ethic – everyone wears a lot of hats to get the job done, and that hands-on is the only way to properly manage a business. We have the most experienced, proven management teams in our core industries.
Why do we exist? Like any company, we have a responsibility to our shareholders (Kent and its commonly held brands are privately owned). We hold our other responsibilities in equal value – to provide jobs and opportunities for our associates, to improve the communities and industries in which we work, and to enhance and improve the experience and safety of outdoor activities for our consumers.
We highly value integrity of commitment, a sense of urgency, and data driven decision making. We are a sales-driven company, meaning that we are also customer driven. We recognize that our people make the difference, and we strive to reward our associates through profit sharing. We are here to make a profit, but we want to have fun while making it!
We strive to grow our businesses through both organic means and acquisitions. We are always on the lookout for new ideas and companies to add to our portfolio. We stress continuous improvement and take the long view in all of our business decisions. We are in it for the long haul.
Would you like to join us? Have an idea? Interested in selling your outdoor product/safety business? Click here to contact us!