Too Good to Go

Just when you think a brand is done for, they sometimes get a last-minute reprieve. Recently on TimeMachiner, I've written about some companies going belly-up: mainly Brydge and DPReview. But in true Monty Python fashion, they're not dead yet. Incredibly those two plus Bed Bath and Beyond, a third well-known company name, aren't going anywhere.

Firstly we get Brydge, the iPad and tablet keyboard company. I have a Brydge I bought many years ago, my second, after getting one from their initial Kickstarter. Back in May Chance Miller at 9to5Mac reported its sudden disintegration. Creditors were left unpaid and customers were stuck with no support. Now Brydge will rise once more under the stewardship of a new owner.

A company called Uinta Products announced that it has acquired Brydge’s assets with support from investment firm Claret Capital. 

In a press release announcing the deal, Uinta Products says that it plans to relaunch Brydge Technologies. The press release describes Uinta Products as a “rising entity in the technology industry.” 

Uinta Products will be led by Leon Rossi as CEO, who served as Brydge’s CFO from October 2022 until the company officially ran out of money in March 2023. Alan Way, who worked as Brydge’s vice president of global sales from October 2021 through March 2023, will serve as Uinta’s chief revenue officer. 

In today’s announcement, Rossi directly addresses my story on Brydge from last month and says that Uinta Products is committed to “rebuilding this business stronger and better.” According to Rossi, a “number of former Brydge employees” have joined Uinta.


We move along to DPReview, the long-running camera gear review website. Amazon bought it many years ago and was going to shut it down, maybe because it got bored by it. Or maybe it's more of Amazon's cost-cutting they're going through under its new CEO. Regardless, it showed exactly why the internet is ephemeral and it's incredibly hard to create permanence online. My reflection on the impending wipe of DPReview from the internet included this:

Permanence is another story. For long-time "onliners" like myself, the web is nothing like it was. Most, if not all, destinations I used to frequent are long gone. And with them every piece of information they held. Lycos, Geocities, HampsterDance, Jeeves, and Yahoo Groups are gibberish to anyone under 30. But "back in the day" those were major repositories of information in which we visited a lot.

In an unforeseen twist, Gear Patrol was able to wrangle DPReview from the clutches of Amazon. It purchased the entire site and everything along with it to give it a new lease on life. DPReview's general manager Scott Everett was able to announce the news as soon as the deal quietly closed.

Dear readers,

We’ve heard from many of you over the past several weeks, and we realize there are many questions about what comes next for DPReview. We’re thrilled to share the news that Gear Patrol has acquired DPReview. Gear Patrol is a natural home for the next phase of DPReview’s journey, and I’m excited to see what we can accomplish together.

I want to reassure you that we remain firmly committed to what makes DPReview great: the best camera reviews in the business, industry-leading photography news and features, and one of the most active photography communities anywhere on the internet.

This is just the beginning of a new chapter for DPReview and we don’t have all the answers yet, but I’m sharing what we know below and will continue to share information about this change as we get more acquainted with our partners at Gear Patrol.

Thank you for your continued support of our team and legacy. We appreciate it and can't thank you all enough.

- Scott Everett
General Manager -


Rounding out the trio is the bankruptcy of Bed Bath & Beyond. The retailer was in financial trouble for a long time. It's the devil of getting customers hooked on couponing and discounts in order to juice sales. People come to expect the coupon and won't shop unless that 20% off postcard is in hand. I'm one of them. The company is closing stores and liquidating everything. Last week it was announced that of all companies, has bought the name and is taking things a step further: a full rebrand. Elizabeth Napolitano at CBS News has more. is rebranding as Bed Bath & Beyond after purchasing the big-box retailer's intellectual property assets at a bankruptcy auction last week. 

The e-commerce giant bid $21.5 million for Bed Bath & Beyond's website and domain names, trademarks, patents, customer database and loyalty program data, among other assets under the company's banner. Its marriage with the once-popular retailer will enable both companies to offer customers a wide selection of home furnishings, kitchen, bedding and bath-related products through a single online storefront, Overstock CEO Jonathan Johnson said. 

The company is also "considering whether and how to reinstate expired Welcome Rewards points," although it will not accept expired Bed Bath & Beyond coupons, Johnson told CBS MoneyWatch. Still, he promised good bargains on the revamped website.

CBS News

What strikes me as most interesting here is that Overstock has built up its own brand recognition for many years and is ready to toss it out the window for something they feel is trading up. It didn't purchase any of the retail locations and the report plainly says the couponing days are over.

How will the new BB&B fare, given it's a rebirth of sorts? I suspect sticking to its guns of no more couponing over a long enough timeline will break people of the habit. It is a similar tale to JC Penny and when it hired Apple Retail executive Ron Johnson. Penny's was also in a situation of conditioned customers who would not buy unless there was a coupon. Johnson cut that off and decided to simply lower the prices to create the same out-the-door price effect. It didn't work.

Johnson's tenure at JCP was short-lived and the company went back to its old ways. I always said that if it simply stuck with it long enough, people would adapt and learn the prices were good without a sale because you could compare the prices on your phone. Hell, it could've put price comparison signs in the store to show shoppers an item was cheaper at JCP than Amazon or elsewhere.

Either way, we know how that ended, and of all three resuscitated brands, I am truly interested to see where BB&B stands a year from now. Overstock's eggs are all in that basket now.

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