Predator to Open Asian Office

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (May 31, 2011) – Clawson Custom Cues, d/b/a Predator Group, announced that it will open a satellite office in Hong Kong by the end of this year.  All corporate functions, including research and development, as well as the company's headquarters, will remain in Jacksonville, FL.

Predator Group is making this move for several reasons.  According to Karim Belhaj, Chief Executive Officer, "we have successfully marketed our products all over the world but, more recently, we have experienced enormous growth in China and other Asian markets.  Not only are these markets expanding but interest in billiards is on the rise as well. We want to capitalize on the many opportunities offered by this vibrant region and believe establishing a presence in the region represents a good first step."

Since 2009, the company has been working to diversify its manufacturing base with the threefold goals of accelerating product development, ensuring a steady and more timely flow of product to its customers and increasing the value offered to players who choose Predator and Poison products.  A greater presence in Asia will allow Predator Group to work more closely with both customers and suppliers in the region, and thus enhance critical business relationships. Outside of the U.S., the company currently sources materials, products and accessories from Canada, China, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Malaysia and Taiwan.

Predator has also seen an increase in the amount of fake Predator and Poison products in the global marketplace.  "We've worked hard to build our brands around the world and therefore become a target for counterfeiters, most of whom set up shop in Asia," said Belhaj.  "We may not solve the problem on our own but having our people on the ground in the region will give us greater knowledge and help us better protect our intellectual property."

John Forrester, Chairman of Predator Group, stated "the company has reached a tipping point and it is time to formally open for business in Asia."  He continued, "this is a strategic move for the company and, to ensure its success, our board of directors has asked Karim Belhaj to spend the next few months in Asia surveying the competitive landscape, securing facilities and recruiting the necessary personnel.  He will maintain his Jacksonville residence."