Why is KnivesShipFree “Phasing Out” Spyderco?

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UPDATE: Nov 10/15 : click here for the latest on the story.


“Spyderco is a really neat company and I love working with them. I just can’t afford it anymore.” Derrick Bohn, the owner of KnivesShipFree said in an interview on The Modern Neanderthal, the acclaimed but hard to spell knife podcast.

Why is one of the top online knife dealers slowly phasing out the iconic knife brand? “Simply because you can buy a Spyderco on Amazon for two to three dollars cheaper than I can buy it from Spyderco.” said Bohn “The truth is if you buy a Spyderco on our site we lose money. You can’t make that up in volume. We’re slowly phasing those out.”

The Modern Neanderthal’s Nick Clayton and Bohn expressed concern about Spyderco’s distribution channel strategies and the ramifications for knife enthusiasts, knife dealers, and Spyderco itself.

The exact nature of Spyderco’s relationship with Amazon remains unclear but as recently as early 2015, Spyderco had an explicit policy of only selling knives directly to new retailers if they operated a physical storefront. Spyderco forced on-line only stores to buy knives through wholesale distributors who would add their markup. UPDATE: Please refer to this story for Spyderco’s clarification.

..you can buy a Spyderco on Amazon for two to three dollars cheaper than I can buy it from Spyderco.. -Derrick Bohn, KnivesShipFree

..Meanwhile at Amazon

For its part, Amazon’s ecommerce sales may break the $100 Billion mark this year and the company still doesn’t seem to care about profit margins. Jeff Bezos, Founder, Chairman & CEO said this about Amazon’s ecommerce business: “Percentage margins are not one of the things we are seeking to optimize”. Amazon is able to resell products often below cost because it can sell additional services like product and text advertising and Amazon Prime subscriptions and credit card offers to consumers drawn in by its rock bottom prices. 84% of involved production knife enthusiasts have purchased at least one knife from Amazon according to an Infographic released by KnifeNews.

To conclude the Spyderco discussion KnivesShipFree’s Derrick Bohn offered what seemed like parting sentiments:
“Sal [Glesser] has done really great things for the knife world. He really is a legend and with good reason and he is one of the kindest guys you’ll meet in this business .. he’s just a great guy. They really are a good company. Everyone I’ve worked with there is great.”

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