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Breaking news: Phil & Teds and Regal-Lager to split up

This was hardly a surprise, after a steady stream of recalls and other issues, but today, Regal-Lager announced that they will cease to distribute Phil & Teds in the United States, effective May 1, 2009. In a graciously-worded press release, both companies praise one another and wish each other the best of luck.

I can only imagine the stress, both emotional and financial, on Regal-Lager over the past several months, trying to handle one crisis after another. It hasn’t been easy for anyone – not them, not the retailers, and certainly not the frustrated customers. Hopefully this will create a fresh start for Phil & Teds here. From what I’ve been told, no one is anticipating any product shortages due to the changeover. Phil & Teds will take over distribution on May 1, and they have more than six months to get their ducks in a row. Regal-Lager will continue to be well-stocked in all Phil & Teds products right up until then. It should be “seamless.”

I am still a big fan of the Phil & Teds brand and I think their products have a lot going for them. I think they’ve made a few mistakes over the past year or so, and hopefully they know what those are and they’ve learned a few things from them. But they’ve also done some really good things with their marketing, their packaging and their product design. If they can get a tighter grip on their quality control and product testing, and if they recognize that good customer service is essential for their new US operation, they should continue to succeed.

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