Bag’n Baggage Merging with California Company

POSTED: 12/01/2011 11:21:33 AM MST

UPDATED: 12/01/2011 11:21:42 AM MST

By The Denver Post

Denver’s Gart Companies is merging its Bag’n Baggage with California travel catalog sales company Magellan Travel Supplies.

The equal partnership merger will be headquartered in Denver, with each company operating independently. The marrying of the two brands is expected to push both company’s travel products into expanded retail channels. Plans are underway to expand Magellan’s exclusive product lines while growing the company’s presence online and in retail stores.

Magellan, which was established in 1989 and is majority owned by private equity firm Sverica International, boasts 1.8 million catalog and e-commerce customers and has two specialty stores in southern California.

“Our private label products that solve travel challenges have become part of our signature, and now we can bring them to a wider audience through Colorado Bag’n Baggage stores,” said Magellan chief executive Mark Gallo in an announcement released today.

Colorado Bag’n Baggage, which formed in 2008 with the merger of Texas Bag’n Baggage and Colorado Baggage, has more than 30 stores located in Colorado, Texas, Arizona, Florida, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, California and Hawaii.

“The combined business opportunity is much greater than our independent operations, and we expect the new company to grow faster and more profitably with new store expansion that leverages Magellan’s catalog customer base,” said Bag’n Baggage chief Tom Nelson in the statement.

Ken Gart, partner of The Gart Companies, called the merger a game changer for both companies.

“The two businesses compliment each other well and we plan to build on those synergies to elevate both brands to higher awareness and sales,” Gart said in the statement.