B.A.S.S. acquires leading outdoors production company

CELEBRATION, Fla. — B.A.S.S. LLC has acquired JM Associates, one of the nation's oldest and largest outdoor programming production companies, B.A.S.S. announced today.

 JM Associates was founded by Jerry McKinnis, one of three private investors — along with Don Logan and Jim Copeland — who purchased B.A.S.S. from ESPN in November 2010. The group bought JM from Atlanta-based CSE, which has owned it since 2007.

 A pioneer in outdoor television, JM Associates has produced The Bassmasters television show for ESPN for 10 years, receiving an Emmy nomination for the show in 2008. Its roots date back to 1963, when McKinnis launched his first television fishing show on a local television station in Little Rock, Ark. It produced McKinnis' program, The Fishin' Hole, which debuted on ESPN in 1981, as well as most other "Outdoor Block" programming on the network for the past three decades.

 "Having JM Associates as part of the family will make the B.A.S.S. media operations completely seamless. It will enable us to expand our media in every direction, and even beyond freshwater fishing," said McKinnis. "We're especially excited about opportunities to create compelling programming from a treasure of video archives."

 "JM and B.A.S.S. will be a good fit; one that I believe will benefit the sportfishing industry in many ways," said Lonnie Cooper, founder and chief executive officer of CSE, a full-service agency dedicated to working with a wide range of clients in sports and entertainment. "CSE and JM Associates will remain strategic partners as our companies continue to work together on existing and future projects."

 In addition to producing B.A.S.S.'s flagship television show for ESPN2 and Outdoor Channel, JM Associates provides coverage of the Bassmaster Elite Series, the Bassmaster Classic and other professional events on Bassmaster.com.

 The company produces numerous other outdoor shows, including Spanish Fly, Zona's Awesome Fishing Show, Madfin Shark Series, STIHL® TIMBERSPORTS® Series, College Bass and The Saltwater Series.

 For more than 40 years, B.A.S.S. has served as the authority on bass fishing. The organization advances the sport through advocacy, outreach and an expansive tournament structure while connecting directly with the passionate community of bass anglers through its Bassmaster media vehicles.

 The Bassmaster brand and its multimedia platforms are guided by a mission to serve all fishing fans. Through its industry-leading publications — Bassmaster Magazine and B.A.S.S. Times — comprehensive website Bassmaster.com, ESPN2 and Outdoor Channel television programming, Bassmaster provides rich, leading-edge content true to the lifestyle.

 The Bassmaster Tournament Trail includes the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open Series, B.A.S.S. Federation Nation events presented by Yamaha and Skeeter Boats and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the Bassmaster Classic.

 B.A.S.S. offers an array of services to its more than 500,000 members and remains focused on issues related to conservation and water access. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.

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