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QuicKutz Assets Bought By Investment Group

A Utah-based investor group called Lifestyle Crafts, LLC, has announced that it has entered into an agreement to buy the assets of QuicKutz, Inc.

Lifestyle Crafts, LLC. is a newly founded investor group described by the company as being made up of investors “with years of experience in manufacturing and distributing crafting goods and tools.” Its registered address is in Lindon, Utah. Principals of the company include Stephen Stewart TRUST of Farmington, UT; Daniel S. Stewart of Farmington, UT; and Hsin I. Shih of Taipei.

Both the QuicKutz and L brands will become part of Lifestyle Crafts under the terms of the asset purchase agreement.

“We’re thrilled to acquire these established brands, which have a rich history in providing the crafting market with fun and innovative products. We see a great future for both brands,” said Dan Stewart, Lifestyle Crafts CEO.

Former QuicKutz, Inc. President & CEO Eric J. Ruff says he feels positive about the future for the brands he helped create:

These brands are in good hands now, with many more resources to provide product to a growing customer base. Though I will miss my association with the company, I’m excited to see these brands thrive under new ownership.

In possibly related news, Quickutz’s attorneys in the patent violation lawsuit filed against them by Spellbinders filed a request with the court on June 11th (with the approval of QuicKutz President Eric Ruff) asking to be released from their duties in the case. The court approved the motion on June 14th and released the attorneys, leaving QuicKutz currently without counsel of record in the case since no new counsel for them has filed to be recognized by the court.

The sale of QuicKutz’s assets will likely drastically change the course of the Spellbinders patent violation lawsuit. The lawsuit is asking for several key things:

  • Stopping QuicKutz from manufacturing, promoting, and selling the allegedly infringing products
  • Damages for past infringement
  • The seizure & destruction, or turning over to Spellbinders, of infringing product inventory

QuicKutz will no longer be the legal entity that will be selling the allegedly infringing products, and with their product inventory presumably one of the assets that they sold, that is gone too from the reach of the current lawsuit. The only thing it appears might remain within the reach of the lawsuit as it currently stands against entity QuicKutz is damages for alleged past infringement by that entity.

QuicKutz recently released its first new product introduction in quite some time, but the company is not scheduled to exhibit at CHA Summer 2010.


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7 Responses to QuicKutz Assets Bought By Investment Group

  1. Kathy in MN July 9, 2010 at 8:23 pm #

    Very interesting how selling the company gets them out of most of what the lawsuit was about. Any indication as to if that was the reason behind the sale? (just curious)

    • Nancy Nally July 9, 2010 at 8:45 pm #

      I would have no idea as to the motivation behind the sale other than pure speculation.

      Please note that I am not a lawyer in answering this question! But if I understand this correctly…arguably, if the new company starts selling the products that Spellbinders allege are infringing, or if they bought the inventory that Spellbinders is asking to have seized, they could also be targeted by Spellbinders with legal action. But that would require Spellbinders to file a new suit against the new company (or file a motion to add a new party to the old one), because the new company isn’t named in the old lawsuit.

  2. Jan Scholl July 10, 2010 at 2:49 am #

    I would be curious to know what the sales were in recent months for QuicKutz.. 5 years ago everyone I knew was buying them, and I had a ton. But when the scrap stores started adding Spellbinders and we came across them at conventions, we never looked back at QuicKuts. 3 years ago the local scrap stores started discounting QuicKutz at 50% off to try and sell them, even giving us a machine made for them (mine is still in the box unused-but I loved the price I got on the Washington alphabet!). About 18 months ago, the price went to 75% off. All the rumours flying about the company, I think no one wanted to get stuck with inventory. The three stores I shop at exclusively have said they won’t carry them anymore. When they are gone, that’s it. I know there is a start up making dies but havent seen any yet. And with the die cut machines (electronic) you don’t need dies anymore. But don’t try to get my Spellbinders away from me. They are the best!

  3. Nicole K July 10, 2010 at 3:12 am #

    Wasn’t Lifestyle crafts affliated with Quickutz already when they released the L Letterpress? Are they just shifting around company names and responsibilites to avoid having to pay up to Spellbinders? I smell something fishy.

    • Nancy Nally July 10, 2010 at 9:21 am #

      Lifestyle was a brand name that was being used to market the Letterpress. It’s not uncommon for investment groups that form companies for the sole purpose of buying another one (as happened in this case) to name that company using a brand name from that company to maintain public recognition of it. A good example is when the private equity group bought the crafts group of magazines from Primedia and named it CK Media, after Creating Keepsakes.

      Whether these investors were in any way associated with the Letterpress or QuicKutz before the purchase, I don’t know. I am still working on finding out more about who they are.

  4. Irene at Gone Scrapbooking July 10, 2010 at 6:02 pm #

    Hi Nancy,
    Thank you for this informative article! I linked to it from http://bit.ly/b5A09S
    Have a wonderful weekend. :)

  5. Crystal Williams July 10, 2010 at 9:05 pm #

    Thank you, Nancy. I love being “in the know” regarding the industry. Around here, all the locally owned scrapbook stores have closed their doors, leaving only Hobby Lobby and Michael’s for brick and mortar stores. This trend really worries me as well as the decline of the scrapbooking magazines.

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