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This week was the National Hardware Show in Las Vegas. I went out for it, and it was a great event. I was lucky enough to be a judge for their slider and side cook off presented by BBQ Nation, which was an amazing experience. Everyone did a fantastic job, and Tim Scheer from Blues Hog took home the top spot. I’ll have a full article on highlights from the show soon. In the meantime, there are some pictures up on our Instagram.
I was also on The BBQ Central Show this week talking new Traeger releases and griddles, amongst other things. I’m excited to say I’ll be a recurring guest every 3rd Tuesday of the month going forward.
The biggest story from the week was more CEO turnover. Two companies saw new CEOs take the helm. At Gozney they appointed a new CEO to take over from founder Tom Gozney. The new CEO, Denny Bruce, was a VP at Traeger for about 4 years. Also, he’s going to reside stateside, rather than the UK. Tom Gozney will move to a product development role as Executive Chairman.
In a more shocking move, Camp Chef parent company Vista Outdoor got rid of their CEO, Chris Metz. The reason given was the Board lost confidence in him. He has been in his role for over 6 years, and from the outside, seemed to be doing a good job. It’s also more of a shock because they plan on splitting Vista Outdoor into two separate public companies this year.
There were more grill releases this week, and in the case of Nexgrill’s parent company Global Leisure, a new brand. They launched SPIRE, which features all stainless steel grills for outdoor kitchens. Much like what we’ve been seeing at Nexgrill, the grills at SPIRE are at a high value price point. They looked great at the National Hardware Show.
Pit Boss released a new hybrid grill, aimed at more flavor than a regular pellet grill. They call it a combo grill, and it’s part pellet grill, part charcoal grill. I think there’s probably more utility out of other combinations, but Pit Boss must feel there’s a market for it. It will be sold exclusively at Tractor Supply.
At Weber there was a new trademark filing for a stylized Q. It’s more than likely an updated logo for their Q series portable gas grills. That would lead us to believe that they’re working on an update to that popular line. We already have seen their 2023 releases, so we don’t expect to see it until 2024.
Finally, American Outdoor Brands is dramatically increasing their footprint in Columbia, MO. They purchased Grilla Grills last year and consolidated operations from the founding Michigan facility last fall. The new lease for more space is to accommodate the move.