larson/neilsen bainbridge rumor


True Grumbler
Dec 10, 2003
hopewell new jersey
i don't know if i should post this to the business forum, but i've heard from someone at bainbridge that they and larson have had at least one meeting about a merger. this is a true fact. has anyone heard anything else?



i'm not sure i really know how to use these little emoticons, so if they look silly, that's why :)
I believe that you heard this from "someone" at Bainbridge. That part of your statement may be fact. But a single meeting about something that may have included talk of a merger nature doesn't mean much to me other than idle talk from the rumor mill.

framerguy said:

"I believe that you heard this from "somebone" at Bainbridge. That part of your statement
may be fact. "

should have been "someone" and that was the only item i offered as fact. imho, even the idle gossip that floats around the industry has a shread of truth to it. i'm just looking into it.

Sorry, the typo was my fault and not yours, I corrected it.

LJ tried to buy them out a few years ago and the owner of N/B declined.
I sent the president a letter thanking him for not succumbing to the octopus of the industry and actually got a response thanking me for my loyalty and support.
I buy from both, and I like them being separate companies. Perhaps we should all send letters today. Do you have his name and address handy?


Frame Destination, Inc.
Dallas, TX
I really hope this is not true. I am doing my best to not help LJ from putting the small frame shops (including mine) out of business. I would really hate to but all my Neilson and Bainbridge in the same trash can as I did with my Larson's.

that's how i feel about it, as well. i use predominately crescent/truvue and don't miss bainbridge very much, tho' i do have the corner samples for the occasional color match. i have designer metal moulding available, but the most metals i have are from nielsen. i tossed my clark moulding a long time ago.
I really feel I must reply to this thread.
In no way, shape or form do I feel Larson is trying to put my small frame shop out of business. May I please ask for particulars as to why framers feel this way?
My rep, Bart, and Travis before that, went out of their way to assist our shop. I have had some great conversations with Bart on the state of the industry and we bounce marketing and design ideas off each other. It has been, and will continue to be, a very informative and productive relationship. I think more vendors should offer this support if they can. On the road to differentiation and profitablity, I'll take all the help I can get.

without getting into details that could be litigious, i just want to say that many times what larson said and what they did were two different realities. untruths were said and i just couldn't do business with them. my sales reps were never helpful, one of them i wouldn't see because of his phone behavior and whenever there was a problem, the person to whom is spoke would always infer (never say outright) that the problem was mine and not caused in any way by them. it always seemed to be the customer's responsibililty if there were issues; it never was theirs.

after years of this, i just couldn't do business with them anymore. i don't think they want to put anyone out of business; they just don't want small businesses.

I agree with your comments. LJ has been an excellant vendor for my small one-man shop. I measure the other vendors against LJ. There are some other excellant vendors with excellant products. I try to do business with the ones that give me the best service & value. LJ is the benchmark in my opinion.
randy -

this is why we live in a democracy :). we don't have to agree at all. i form my opinions based on my 28 years in the industry, but i certainly don't expect everyone to agree with me. clearly, lots of people do business with lj, but lots of people don't. i think that those of us who don't have our reasons and, speaking for myself, become concerned when it might be possible that another company will bought up by them.

I know that this is an old rehashed thread, but count me as one that truly believes that Larson is the patron saint of small framers.

As a "bigger player" I can attest that they are especially potective of smaller operators.

On balance, they certainly do more for the "average" shop than anyone else I know, both in support, advertising and pricing.

I am sure there are many horror stories of bruised relationships-it just happens when you deal with as many accounts as they.

Much like the same reason a lot of people hate the Yankees
I think the satement that LJ does not want small businesses is incorrect. I dumped LJ years ago after a series of mishaps. When the new sales rep, Dave Modene, came to my area, he was very persistant and came to see me every time he was nearby. I did comfortable numbers, but I was never in Bob C.'s league. It took a while, but Dave wore me down. I agreed to give LJ one more try. I told Dave, any screw ups, LJ is out for good. Ever since then, I had excellent service, and LJ had won me over. To say LJ does not want small shops is just plain wrong. The small shop is the backbone of this industry, and LJ knows it.

I would like to see if anyone can name another company that has done as much to promote the custom framing industry as Larson Juhl. I have seen their ads in home decorating magazines, and I believe they have developed a television commercial.

As one of Mike's polls indicate, more framer's deal with LJ than don't. There must be a reason for this.

Larson buying Nielsen gets a big "so what?" from me. I'll believe it when it happens, and I still won't care. Right now, it is just another rumor that I won't be repeating.
I am not going to post a litany of pros or cons for LJ. It would be useless anyway since many of us in not all have formulated our opinions of them already.

However I would advise ALL to check the search feature and look for previous conversations about Anonymus insinuations about LJ. It would be very helpfull to note that Most if not all these RUMORS are started by Competitors that Can't COMPETE. It may also be noted that some are PURE speculation based on someone's FEARS.

The Jo-Anne's buyout/merger is a prime example.A I heard /remebr the outcome Jo-anne's is not in anyway owned by LJ but doing a business that is unlike what any of US smaller shops can do.While that is annoying it is not Illegal nor Unethical.However the RUMORS continue to fly and GROW and really need to be substaniated before being posted.

Good night>
I use Larson Juhl and have a very good relationship with them but I would still hate to see this merger unless it meant diminishing the Nielsen line, which is doubtful. We switched from Nielsen to Clark around 20 years ago after an episode with Nielsen that stings to this day. I would hate to see the Nielsen line absorbed by Larson to the detriment of the Clark line. I would be torn because, although I have a very good relationship with Larson, I wouldn't be able to buy Nielsen from them. Same if they absorbed Bainbridge and suppressed Crescent. I'd have to go back to ordering direct from Crescent. :(