Membership

ATA Member Spotlight: MWS Associates Inc.

MWS Associates Inc. helps retailers and manufacturers in the northeast and throughout the Midwest succeed. The company also relies on the ATA to help grow the archery and bowhunting industry.
Photo Credit: MWS Associates Inc.

Author: Cassie Scott

MWS Associates Inc., made of former Mike Wieck Sales employees, is a sales-representative agency with a 39-year legacy of success. The company helps retailers and manufacturers flourish in the competitive archery and bowhunting industry.

 

About the Business

Kurt Bassuener, president, and Bill Goodreau, vice president, started MWS Associates Inc. after Mike Wieck after retired in February 2018, and rebranded the agency as MWS Associates Inc.

With 13 dedicated team members, the agency represents 20 to 25 manufacturers in 24 states, and helps grow business for hundreds of independent retailers and multi-channel retailers like Scheels, Cabela’s, Gander Outdoors, Bass Pro Shops  and Dick’s Sporting Goods.

“Although we’re technically a new company, our legacy goes back 39 years which makes us one of the oldest rep agency in the industry,” Bassuener said. “Because of our in-depth knowledge of the industry, we’re able to help [our business partners] become more profitable. Our philosophy is simple: We focus on our customers’ interests, not ours, because if they succeed, so will we.”

The company also helps its retail partners understand their market, decide which products to carry, and execute sales and merchandising strategies. Photo Credit: ATA/Lester Photography.

Satisfied Customers

MWS Associates Inc. helps manufacturers bring the right products to the market, and then helps with sales and marketing. They hold strategic planning meetings, convey market trends, and conduct competitive analyses, while being the manufacturers’ eyes and ears in the industry.

The company also helps its retail partners understand their market, decide which products to carry, and execute sales and merchandising strategies. Staff members work closely with their account inventory teams to collect point-of-sales data, and manage inventory levels to optimize profitability.

“We want to do an outstanding job for our clients,” Bassuener said. “We owe it to them. Therefore, we’re very conscious of how many companies each team member represents. Balanced coverage is an important concept for us. It’s part of the reason we’re so successful.”

Bassuener said his team is professional, passionate about the industry, and extremely good at what they do. He believes those qualities and their clients’ satisfaction created the company legacy, which reflects their service and work ethic.

 

Staying Relevant

To maintain its reputation, the MWS Associates Inc. staff and business must evolve, change and adapt, Goodreau said. And to ensure the business stays on track, Goodreau seeks insights from the ATA.

“The ATA is a platform that brings all facets of business together,” Goodreau said. “We’re all competitors, and we compete against each other throughout the season and the years. But we must grow the [participation] numbers in the industry, and to do that we must work together.”

Goodreau said the best way to engage other companies is to interact with them at the annual  ATA Trade Show. MWS Associates Inc. brings its entire staff to the event to meet with clients and “get the pulse of the industry,” Goodreau said.

The ATA Trade Show is a members-only event, and is closed to the public. To join MWS Associates Inc. at the Show, and network with other archery and bowhunting professionals, join the ATA and register to attend.

Bassuener served on the ATA Board of Directors from 2007 to 2015. He said the experience showed him how involved the association is with its members, and the issues facing the archery and bowhunting industry.

“I have a unique perspective because I sat on the Board of Directors for nine years,” Bassuener said. “I was involved with a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff that regular members don’t see. Realistically, the ATA does so much for the growth and health of the industry, and I think that largely goes unrecognized. Although we’re all competitors in the industry, we all have the same goal, and that’s to help the industry succeed. The ATA works on that, and reminds us to see the bigger picture.”

Mike Wieck Sales was an Archery Manufacturers and Merchants Organization, or AMO, member since its 1979 launch. The company continued its membership when the AMO was reorganized into the Archery Trade Association in 2002. Mike Wieck Sales’ membership history transferred to MWS Associates Inc. in 2018.

For more information, or to learn more about ATA memberships, contact the ATA’s business and membership office at (866) 266-2776 or info@archerytrade.org.

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