Billiards Giant Viking Cue Reopens Under New Leadership

Pool cue manufacturing leader Viking Cue Manufacturing, LLC reopens under the new ownership of Wisconsin businessman Mark Larson. Nearly all of the same employees were rehired, though executive team has innovative plans for new direction.

MADISON, WI—May 14, 2011—After closing doors on pool cue manufacturing in 2010, billiards leader Viking Cue has reopened under the leadership of local businessman Mark Larson.

Larson, a longtime friend of Viking's 27-year veteran VP of Manufacturing, Rick Rolli, placed a bid on the business after a visit to the company's facilities. "I really fell in love with the operation and the rich history of Viking. I knew that there was another chapter just waiting to be written," said Larson, who purchased the company on May 9.

Founded in 1965 by Gordon Hart, who remains with the company as a consultant, Viking has a worldwide reputation for craftsmanship and excellence. "Viking has always had a superior product line and an incredibly loyal following in the billiards industry," said industry veteran Rolli. "We're going to breathe life back into this company. We've got the same facility, a great inventory of product, state of the art equipment and the same artisans, many who have been here for over 25 years."

Since the company has rehired nearly all of the same employees, little will change within its basic infrastructure, though the company has plans for new initiatives. "We're bringing back the family and the employees, and we'll never lose sight of the quality Viking is known for. But we're about to make big pushes in marketing and product offerings. It's what this company needs to thrive."

One of Viking's main goals is to create a top-notch interactive website so that dealers and individual customers alike have easy access to Viking products. "In the past, Viking didn't have a strong web presence. Dealers couldn't just go online and buy cues. We want to make ordering easy for everyone, and create an online image that reflects Viking's unmatched craftsmanship," said Rolli.

The company also plans to reach out to new markets, and make the company's products accessible to more people: plans for additional product and accessory lines with multiple price points to appeal to a broader audience. Though the goals are largely customer-focused, another main concern is giving dealers the tools they need to succeed.