I wondered if the company was having problems since Fred Hall, there being a conspicuous lack of new product news from Tiburon in the usual chatter. Pity I can't justify a 16 to the wife after spending $1K on guides in Florida last week.
I wonder what they DO have in mind, once they're out of the reel business proper? .... bet we see some Okuma product including the signature gear-shifting mechanism next year or so.
Tib will focus on their accessory product. I see no info from Okuma regarding use of the Tib shift mechanism. However, overseas Tib did license another firm to offer / produce reels using their name. Not sure what will become of that.
The Tib guys are machinists first, fishermen second, and, well, from a marketing standpoint never really put the time or effort into building their name. In the retail community we knew their product well, communicated the features well and sold the product well enough to be their largest dealer. However, most shops didn't have a clue how to use the reels properly and there was no sales support from Tib to get the point across, and for the past five years most other dealers didn't have an open to buy anything but the bike-maker's products given terms and some strong arm marketing tactics which closed off the ability to bring in and support other products. Tib never advertised and didn't hit the show circuit promoting their advantages. So, word of mouth was the only way to gain traction in the market. Their market was relatively small as a result. And, you can't build reels competitively unless you hit some economies of scale. That's the crunch for Tib in terms of reels, but with respect to frames and accessory products it's a different story, they have that market cornered and are the only option out there in that respect at the present time.
Well .... I must see if I can find a 50 or even an 80 at a closeout price. I'll take the chance of spare parts problems if I can get a good enough deal. Not likely, though, the cognoscenti and shop insiders have probably got them all already, and I'm wary of the schnooks on the big auction site.
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