April 30, 2012

Vol. 13 No. 17

This Week:

Industry News

Government Relations

Ranges & Retailers

News of Note


Conservation Efforts Benefit
From Record 2011 Excise Taxes

View full-size chart.

UP 27% IN FOURTH QUARTER . . . Wildlife conservation efforts got a boost in 2011 thanks to excise taxes paid by America's firearms and ammunition industry. Excise tax obligations for firearms and ammunition manufacturers were up 27 percent in the fourth quarter and up 14 percent for the 2011 calendar year when compared to the same periods the previous year. Obligations for the full 2011 calendar year were the highest for a calendar year to date. Excise tax collections are a key economic indicator for the industry. These 10 to 11 percent excise tax dollars, collected since 1937 under the Pittman-Robertson Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act, are specifically designated to be used by state wildlife agencies for conservation. Collectively, purchasers of firearms and ammunition and hunters are the single-largest source of wildlife conservation funding. NSSF members can access full historical quarterly breakouts by category by logging in at nssf.org/members and clicking "NSSF Industry Research" then "Quarterly FAET/Excise Tax Data." Additional research can be found at nssf.org/research.

Industry News

  • 2012 SHOOTING INDUSTRY MASTERS A SELL-OUT; SPONSORSHIPS STILL AVAILABLE . . . Team slots for the 10th Annual Shooting Industry Masters have sold out in record time, as have stage sponsorships. However, event and shotgun cage sponsorships are still available. Sponsored by FMG Publications, the July 20-21 match has earmarked proceeds to NSSF's First Shots introductory shooting program. For more information on available sponsorships, contact Shari LeGate at shari@shootingindustry.com.

  • FREEDOM GROUP ANNOUNCES NEW CEO . . . George Kollitides, who had been serving as acting CEO of Freedom Group, Inc., has had "acting" removed from his title. Kollitides has been with Cerberus Capital Management, parent company of FGI, since 2003. Freedom Group owns Remington Arms, Bushmaster, DPMS, Marlin and other brands within the shooting industry. Read more.

  • CABELA'S REPORTS STRONG 1Q RESULTS, STRENGTH IN FIREARM SALES . . . Cabela's Inc. (NYSE:CAB) on Thursday reported record first quarter results. Same-store sales, or sales at stores open for at least a year, were up 4.2 percent compared to the same period last year. Net income was up 62 percent to $28.8 million, compared to $17.8 million in the same quarter last year. "Similar to last quarter, we continued to see significant strength in the firearms and shooting categories," Cabela's CEO Tommy Millner said during the company's earnings call.

  • ATK RECEIVES $266 MILLION IN SMALL-CALIBER AMMO ORDERS . . . ATK (NYSE:ATK) has received orders totaling more than $266 million for small-caliber ammunition under an Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract with the U.S. Army Contracting Command, Rock Island, Ill. The order includes a mix of 5.56mm, 7.62mm and .50-caliber military ammunition to be produced at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in Independence, Mo.

  • FEDERAL AMMUNITION MARKS 90TH BIRTHDAY . . . Federal Premium, the Minnesota-based brand that is part of ATK, is celebrating its 90th year as an ammunition manufacturer. To help commemorate the occasion, and many of the significant achievements in its history, Federal has posted a news release and video on its website.

  • BANK OF AMERICA . . . NSSF is aware of allegations surfacing recently that Bank of America has an anti-Second Amendment policy. NSSF is looking into the matter. While NSSF conducts its inquiry, note that many industry companies have reported they continue to have longstanding banking relationships with Bank of America. We will report on the findings of the inquiry when it is complete.

Government Relations

  • THE SHRINKING 'VAST MAJORITY': NSSF RESPONDS TO ATF MEXICAN TRACE REPORT . . . ATF on Thursday released a report on firearms submitted by the government of Mexico for tracing since 2007. NSSF has issued a response to the report on the NSSF Blog.

  • AMENDMENT TO BLOCK MULTIPLE SALES REPORTING PASSES SUBCOMMITTEE . . . Rep. Denny Rehberg (R-Mont.) last week offered an amendment to prohibit the use of federal funds to implement the ATF requirement that firearms retailers in Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas file "multiple sales" reports on the sale of two or more semi-automatic rifles larger than .22 caliber and capable of accepting a detachable magazine that are purchased following an FBI background check by the same individual within five consecutive business days. The Rehberg Amendment passed the House Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations by a vote of 30-19. NSSF and NRA are challenging the reporting requirement in federal court, arguing that ATF has exceeded its legal authority under the Gun Control Act by sending a letter imposing this new record-keeping and reporting requirement.

  • PENNSYLVANIA INSTANT CHECK SYSTEM (PICS) OUTAGE . . . The Pennsylvania Instant Check System (PICS) will be undergoing a full replacement and maintenance from 10 p.m. on May 19 until May 22 at 10 a.m. During this time period, there will be a restriction on all firearm sales. NSSF and the Pennsylvania Association of Firearms Retailers (PAFR) are working with the Governor's Office to try to shorten the time frame or find an alternative.

  • NASGW DONATES TO NRA CAUSES . . . At its spring board meeting held during the NRA Convention in St. Louis, the National Association of Sporting Goods Wholesalers (NASGW) board of directors voted to donate $50,000 ($25,000 each) to the NRA and the NRA-ILA. "This is a very important year for our entire industry," said Jack Baumler, NASGW chairman. "Both federal and state elections will directly affect our future and we felt it was important for NASGW as an organization to be involved."

Retailers & Ranges

  • RANGE PARTNERSHIP GRANT APPLICATION PERIOD IS OPEN . . . NSSF is inviting public and private shooting facilities to apply for grants that can assist in developing strategies to put more target shooters on their firing lines. Up to $400,000 has been set aside for this year's round of Range Partnership Grants. Learn more about the Range Partnership Grant Program by reading NSSF's news release, studying grant guidelines and reviewing case studies of previous grant recipients.

  • SURVEY SHOWS PRICE MOST IMPORTANT . . . A survey conducted by the NPD Group indicates that price trumps sales and special deals, customer service and convenience as a factor in deciding where to shop for the majority of U.S. consumers. Read a report on this survey that appeared in RetailingToday.com.

Research & Statistics

  • SURVEY: HUNTER APPROVAL OF MODERN SPORTING RIFLES ON THE RISE . . . "Do you approve of the use of semi-automatic AR-platform modern sporting rifles for hunting?" Eighty percent of hunters said "yes" to this question in a recent survey, according to an NSSF supplemental report for April. That's up from 75 percent in 2010. Click here to see other findings from the report. NSSF members can log in to view NSSF's complete April Survey Tracker.

    View full-size chart.

  • SOCIAL MEDIA HAS GONE TO THE BIRDS . . . Gobblers that is. With turkey season in full stride, social media outlets like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and blogs have been abuzz with turkey talk. Click here to see how mentions of turkey hunting and turkey season fluctuated week to week this spring. "The monitoring of social media by itself is not a tell-all; however, adding it to other indicators such as license sales and retailer views helps the industry obtain a clearer picture of current market conditions," said Jim Curcuruto, NSSF director of industry research and analysis. Additional research is available at nssf.org/research.

News of Note

  • NSSF GIVING $50,000 IN SCHOLARSHIPS TO VOTING MEMBER COMPANY EMPLOYEES . . . Employees of companies that support the National Shooting Sports Foundation at the highest level can apply for education aid through the NSSF Voting Member Scholarship Program. NSSF is accepting applications for scholarships through 5 pm Eastern time on June 15, 2012. Scholarships are available only to employees and their family members of Voting Member companies of NSSF. Read more.

  • RUGER DONATES $26,000 TO USA SHOOTING IN LEAD-UP TO LONDON . . . Ruger President and CEO Mike Fifer presented USA Shooting with a check for $26,000 at the National Rifle Association (NRA) Annual Meeting in St. Louis, Mo. The money raised by Ruger for the team was the result of on going auction items on Ruger Auction featuring unique pistols and rifles.

Compliance Training

  • GET COMPLIANT BY TAKING FREE TRAINING COURSES . . . Newspaper and media headlines of late are rife with Foreign Corrupt Practices Act scandals and investigations. The National Shooting Sports Foundation's recommendation to industry members wherever they do business is to attend NSSF's free, interactive Global Anti-Corruption training course to learn what business practices are and are not permissible and how to steer clear of violating anti-bribery and anti-corruption laws. The NSSF's arsenal of regulatory compliance resources also offers free training on export controls. Export-control regulations cover transactions you might not even think are "exports." Click here to take both of these courses today and get compliant. The price of noncompliance by not having trained employees is too great.

SHOT Show History Snapshot

Throughout SHOT Show's 35th anniversary year, NSSF will be spotlighting various moments from the show's history.

  • HOW IT ALL BEGAN: SHOT SHOW AT 35 . . . For those who have been there from the beginning it may be hard to believe that 2013 will mark the 35th SHOT Show. Starting today and continuing up until the show, we'll look back at the show's history, from its inception in 1978 and its official opening in 1979, to where it stands today as one of the largest and most vibrant trade shows in the world. Read about how it all began.


NSSF's Mission

"To promote, protect and preserve hunting and the shooting sports."

Click here to visit the NSSF website and see how we accomplish this mission.


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COPYRIGHT © 2012 by National Shooting Sports Foundation, Inc. Permission is granted for broadcast, publication, retransmission to e-mail lists, Web sites or any other copying or storage, in any medium, online or not, if 1) the text is forwarded in its entirety, including this paragraph, and 2) no fee is charged. "Bullet Points®," "National Shooting Sports Foundation®," "NSSF®," and all other trade names, trademarks, service marks, logos and images of the National Shooting Sports Foundation appearing in this publication are the sole property of the Foundation and may not be used without the Foundation's prior express written permission. All other trade names, trademarks, service marks, logos and images appearing in this publication are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

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