Premier Distributor of Outdoor Recreation Products Locates in Asheville

July 16, 2013

In conjunction with the Economic Development Coalition for Asheville-Buncombe County (EDC) and Venture Asheville, Sport Hansa LLC, a premier importer and distributor of European outdoor product brands, today announced its relocation to Asheville.  The firm's expanded distribution center will allow for continued growth and expansion of product lines that today include Helle knives of Norway, Kupilka camping dishware of Finland, Montane technical outerwear and Terra Nova tents of the United Kingdom, as well as Wetterlings Axe Works of Sweden.  The three-year-old company will locate at 10 Business Park Circle in Arden.

"As we continued to expand our customer base and add further European brands, we looked for a location that offered key attributes such as a business friendly environment and a cluster of other important players in the outdoor industry. After an extensive search, Asheville continually came up at the top of our list," stated Matt Huff, Managing Director of Sport Hansa. The company is relocating its headquarters and distribution operations from Longmont, Colorado.

Additionally, the firm announced the appointment of a new Director of Marketing and Inside Sales. Formerly with North Carolina based Diamond Brand Outdoors, John Stephens will be tasked with designing and implementing programs to better support the company's 220 outdoor retail customers in the USA and Canada.

"The arrival of Sport Hansa fulfills two strategic goals of the Asheville 5×5 and Venture Asheville initiatives," said EDC Chairman Paul Szurek. "The company will create sustainable jobs and investment in the outdoor products sector, while becoming another effective participant in our entrepreneurial community. Both groups are advantageous for long-term job growth."

"We're proud to welcome the Huff family and Sport Hansa to Asheville," said David Gantt, Chairman of the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners. "These products have a reputation for quality and craftsmanship in the outdoor recreation arena and are a great fit for Buncombe County."

Loran Evans, President and Owner of Asheville-based Rightline Gear, also welcomed the company and the growth of the outdoor products industry. "This announcement is great news for the growing outdoor gear community in Asheville. Our city is the perfect spot for Sport Hansa to grow its business."

The move also coincides with the announcement of two new manufacturer representatives. Summit Sales and Campbell Sports will represent Helle Norwegian knives and Wetterlings Swedish axes in the Southeast and Mountain regions respectively. For more information on Sport Hansa and product sales, please visit

The EDC for Asheville-Buncombe County is a public-private partnership committed to: creating and retaining high quality jobs, community leadership, and being a resource for better business decisions. The EDC accomplishes this mission through its four core services: business retention and expansion, small business and entrepreneurship, research, and marketing and recruitment. The EDC is funded by Buncombe County, the City of Asheville, the Town of Weaverville, the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce and the AVL 5×5 Campaign.

The Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce is a member organization with over 1,800 member businesses and organizations. Chamber members collaborate with community organizations and coalitions to support the community and each other with the mission of building community through business. The Chamber is home to a 4,000 square foot Visitor Center which welcomes over 195,000 visitors per year.