FORT SMITH (KFSM) – One of the top companies that produces fishing lures out of Rogers is moving its production to Fort Smith.
Pradco, Inc. announced Thursday (Nov. 2) that they have acquired War Eagle Custom Lures.
Pradco has operated out of Fort Smith since 1962, and general manager Bruce Stanton said they have a strong hold on market share when it comes to fishing lures, but acquiring the Rogers company will push them to number one in the country.
“It’s just a popular tool that people use to catch fish in Arkansas and pretty much every state in the country,” Stanton said. “It’s a spinner bait, and what War Eagle does is make these spinner baits in Arkansas.”
Stanton said buying the manufacturer of those fishing lures will ensure that Fort Smith will own the market.
“They are number three in market share in the U.S. and what we have done with the purchase is become the largest company in terms of market share with spinner baits,” he said.
War Eagle Custom Lures was founded by Keith Beshears in Rogers. He started manufacturing the lures out of his garage 22 years ago.
“Keith got his products in Walmart, Bass Pro Shops and Cabelas, but he needed resources to take it to that next level, if we are going to be an international company with distribution in Europe, South America, Australia,” Stanton said.
Pradco plans on keeping Beshears on staff along with any employees who want to relocate.
“Some of his people will hopefullly want to relocate and come down here to Fort Smith and work for us too,” Stanton said.
Pradco is now in the process of converting its old warehouse on Jenny Lind Road into a new manufacturing facility.
Governor Asa Hutchinson will visit Pradco on Nov. 17 for an announcement related to jobs.