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After 128 Years, Uncertain Future for Eureka! Camping Brand

Parent company Johnson Outdoors has already sold Eureka's facility in New York, and will focus instead on its Jetboil brand.

eureka tent(Photo/Shutterstock)
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Eureka! camping tents have long been a staple for outdoor adventures, but now it’s unclear who will keep making them. Johnson Outdoors Inc., which bought Eureka in 1973, announced last week that it would “exit” the company’s product lines. Eureka tents and other camping gear will remain available through 2024 as Johnson Outdoors “winds down operations,” according to a press release.

The parent company will instead focus on its Jetboil franchise and a “strong position in the cooking segment,” Helen Johnson-Leipold, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said in the release. Choosing to discontinue Eureka products was a “tough decision,” she said.

“We expect this will negatively impact company sales by less than 1 percent for fiscal 2024,” added David Johnson, Johnson Outdoors’ Chief Financial Officer. “Additionally, the company expects to take a charge of approximately $4 million in fiscal year 2023 related to this decision.”

eureka tent
Johnson Outdoors already sold the commercial segment of Eureka! back in March; (photo/Shutterstock)

Available information ends there, with no further details on the fate of the Eureka! brand name.

Will Eureka! Gear Live On?

Earlier this year, however, Johnson Outdoors announced the sale of Eureka’s military and commercial tent division to Rekord Group. The deal included Eureka’s original facility in Binghamton, New York, for an estimated price tag of $13.7 million. At that time, Johnson Outdoors said the deal would not include the Eureka! brand name or the recreational side of the camping business.

A spokesperson for Johnson Outdoors didn’t return calls Monday, and Eureka’s offices were closed for an event. As for Rekord Group, a senior manager at the company declined to comment. However, Rekord Group is already selling Eureka’s commercial tent designs under the name Rapid Deployable Systems.

Eureka’s history dates to 1895, when it began making canvas wagon covers, horse blankets, and custom camp tents from its Binghamton workshop.

Johnson Outdoors retains many other brands of outdoor equipment, including Old Town canoes and kayaks, Humminbird marine electronics and charts, and ScubaPro dive equipment.

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