Rhode Island

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RI: Local Hooker Rods Expanding in West Warwick, Creating 12 New Jobs

25 Aug, 2011


Rhode Island Municipalities West Warwick Highl...

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Governor Lincoln D. Chafee joined local representatives, Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation (RIEDC) Executive Director Keith Stokes and company employees today to celebrate the relocation of Local Hooker Rods from Cape Cod, MA to 55 Greenhill St.in West Warwick, RI after receiving a $250,000 loan from the RIEDC’s Small Business Loan Fund.

Local Hooker Rods, a well-known company among the New England recreational fishing community and recently recognized at the International Game Fish Association Offshore World Championships, recently relocated to Rhode Island because of the proximity to their workforce and the available access to capital for their small business. The RIEDC loan will assist the company in creating 12 new full-time jobs over the next 18 months. The company continues to see industry success. Several weeks ago one of their fishing rods reeled in a 434-pound broadbill swordfish for a new state record.

“Local Hooker Rods is a business that has built a reputation for excellence,” Governor Chafee said. “This is how we need to wisely invest our valuable loan fund resources: in companies with track records of success and a proven, in-demand product. Clearly Local Hooker Rods is making its mark in the saltwater fishing community and gaining acclaim for its fine products. We are glad to welcome the company and the 12 new jobs it will create here in Rhode Island. I am certain Local Hooker Rods will make a great addition to our state.”

“Since Local Hooker Rods began, our rods have been designed and built by a master rod builder based here in Rhode Island so moving our manufacturing to West Warwick made sense. We are so appreciative of how quickly the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation grasped the “big picture” Local Hooker Rods had to offer. We are very thankful that Governor Lincoln Chafee’s continued vision and support of the RIEDC is why we are now located in West Warwick, RI,” said Bob Jenkins, founder of Local Hooker Rods.

“This part of West Warwick lost so many businesses as a result of the 2010 floods. It is a promising sign to our recovery and our future growth that this colorfully names small business, Local Hooker Rods, has chosen our town as its new home,” said Representative Patricia Morgan. “The fisherman of Rhode Island will now be outfitted with first-rate, locally made equipment and a new small business will enjoy a great place to grow, employ and prosper.”

“West Warwick is proud to have Local Hooker Rods expanding its business here. We feel this will be a great partnership between Government and Industry which will provide jobs in a community which has struggled economically,” said West Warwick Town Manager James Thomas. “We are confident as Local Hooker Rods becomes a fishing legend and worldwide leader in the sport fishing industry this success will allow for continued economic development in our town.”

“Small business growth continues to be a priority for the RIEDC under the leadership of Governor Chafee and our Board of Directors,” said Keith Stokes, RIEDC Executive Director. This is just one example of how providing a successful small business, like Local Hooker Rods, with the access to capital is needs to further expand and create jobs is and making Rhode Island a better and more attractive place to do business.”

Local Hooker Rods, established in 2006, designs and manufactures Made in America high-end, premium fishing rods for salt and fresh water fish. Founded by Bob Jenkins, Local Hooker Rods are used by both professionals and amateurs from Maine to Florida to provide a superior fishing experience.

About Local Hooker Rods

A young company that produces high-end fishing rods, primarily for saltwater anglers. The company and its principal, Bob Jenkins, are well known in the Cape Cod and New England recreational fishing community. Over the past few years, the company has received great press on its product and has seen strong demand. Recently, their rods received the highest accolades by the winning team: “The Wet Dream Fishing Team” at the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) Offshore World Championships, taking first place against 59 teams from 25 countries.. The press coverage from this event has greatly increased awareness and demand for their products. Additionally, Local Hooker Rods were the rod of choice for the team on Hot Reels, Capt Lou DeFusco and Capt Jack Sprengel who just beat the RI State record for a swordfish by 120 pounds. Their fish weighed-in at 434 pounds!

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