Zippo Takes Full Control of European Distribution

For the past 20 years, Zippo Manufacturing Co. and Polyconcept have worked together in a joint venture for the distribution of Zippo products in Austria, Benelux, France, Germany and Spain. Polyconcept and Zippo are pleased to announce that an agreement has been reached according to which Zippo will take over Polyconcept's stake in Zippo Europe and take full control of the distribution of its products in those select markets in Europe.

This mutual decision is a result of changes in long term business strategies for both companies and Polyconcept and Zippo believe that this change is in their customers and shareholders best respective interests. It is anticipated that the distribution model currently in place will continue but with the added benefit of singular oversight by Zippo.

Greg Booth, President and CEO of Zippo said: "Over the past years Polyconcept and the Zippo Manufacturing Company have worked well together in regards to the distribution of Zippo products in Europe. As the companies have evolved, we realized that this change will contribute to deliver an enhanced service to our customers. We hold Polyconcept in the highest regards and are grateful for the opportunity to have worked together and for their contribution to Zippo's success story in Europe."

Speaking on behalf of Polyconcept, Chairman Michael Bernstein said: "Zippo has been a good friend to Polyconcept over the years and we sincerely hope to continue that friendship. We are in full support of Zippo's desire to manage the distribution of their products in this very important sales market. We wish them every success moving forward."

To oversee Zippo’s European distribution, Richard Finlow has been named Managing Director of Europe, the Middle East and Asia (EMEA). Finlow joined Zippo in 2010, as Business Development Manager for EMEA. Since that time, he has been instrumental in developing these important international markets for Zippo. In his new position, Finlow will oversee the operations and staff for three of Zippo subsidiaries; Zippo UK, Zippo France and Zippo Germany, as well as the business development for all EMEA markets. Finlow works out of the Zippo UK office in London, UK.

Pictured, Richard Finlow

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