By Lauren Hirsch and Michael Flaherty
(Reuters) - Privately held outdoors retailer Bass Pro Shops is exploring an offer for Cabela's Inc, the U.S. hunting and fishing store chain targeted by activist investor Elliott Management, people familiar with the matter said.
Bass Pro is working with an investment bank on the potential offer, the people said this week. Cabela's has recently begun to explore its options and has also reached out to private equity firms to solicit interest, the people added.
The sources asked not to be identified because the deliberations are confidential. Bass Pro Shops declined comment, while Cabela's did not respond to a request for comment.
Shares of Sidney, Nebraska based Cabela's jumped as much as 13 percent on the news, giving it a market capitalization of around $3 billion.
Last month, Elliott disclosed an 11 percent stake in Cabela's and called for it to explore strategic alternatives, including a sale to a private equity firm.
Cabela's manages retail stores in the United States and Canada. The stores are known for their museum quality experience, offering taxidermy, a pond and other attractions.
Cabela's also runs a credit card business, through its wholly owned subsidiary, World's Foremost Bank.
Springfield, Missouri-based Bass Pro Shops was founded in the 1970s by Johnny Morris. Bass Pro has stores in the United States and Canada, as well as several in-store wild game and seafood restaurants.
(Reporting by Lauren Hirsch and Michael Flaherty in New York; Editing by Andrew Hay)