Ross Reels Leaving Big Box Stores to Focus On Specialty Fly Shops

Beginning in January 2018, Ross Reels has announced they will cut ties with big box stores and instead focus on independent retailers.

Read more in the press release below.

Ross Reels Leaving Big Box Stores to Focus On Specialty Fly Shops

From Ross:

Our team at Ross Reels has been working hard to bring you the most compelling new products while bringing the brand back to its roots as the go-to reel company for quality, 100% USA-made reels and unmatched customer service. The support of our dealers has been paramount in this endeavor.

Since we began producing reels in 1973, our greatest asset has always been you, our independent dealer base. Now, in an effort to further support that base, we are ending our sales relationships with major big box retailers, effective January 1, 2018.

By making this decision, we are renewing our commitment to you by focusing sales through the independent retailer network that is the backbone of our industry. The knowledge and expertise of specialty local fly shops cannot be matched, and there is no other place that the Ross Reels® brand should be.

Thank you as always for your continued support.

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  • genelarson

    This is a step in the right direction. Our best source of good equipment, matched to our needs, comes from fly shops. I know of at least two that went under because too many people came in, tried out the gear, got the recommendations, and then went to a big box or on-line merchant and made the purchase. Often these purchases were no cheaper than what they would have paid the fly shop. Go figure the logic in that!

    • M.A. Hughes


      Many large retailers have rewards programs and good return policies that a small shop doesn’t have. It’s a competitive world, and much like our political environment loyalty means squat and it’s consumer first and low price that’s valued over knowledge and giving a squirt about taking care of anyone else.

      While I understand the choice to stick with small experienced shops, what it means is Ross has to become a premium fly reel worthy of demanding a premium price. I just don’t know if they can become that, or are that already to enough people. I wish them luck because it’s a competitive market and consumers have a ton of options.