Sportsman’s Warehouse blames first quarter loss on gun sales
By Christen Smith
Sportsman’s Warehouse blamed a $3.8 million loss in its first quarter on weak gun and ammo sales, according to the company’s conference call with investors last week.
While company execs saw an “encouraging” sign this spring as the industry hangs in the shadow of last year’s record breaking performance, they had always expected sluggish gun sales to carry over from last fiscal year, said John Schaefer, Sportsman’s chief executive officer.
“As we said previously, the underlying demand in this department remains strong when compared to historical levels, partially driven by increased participation rates in outdoor shooting sports as more women and children participate, despite the year-over-year decline in hunting and shooting,” he said during a conference call with investors Thursday.
“We are also encouraged to see that a significant portion of our sales continued to be generated from the use category, especially in our rural markets which are typically more stable and consistent over time compared to protection purchases and skews toward the historical 5 percent to 8 percent annual growth rate.”
The company’s performance echoed trends in federal background check data, which show the industry still lags 10 percent behind 2016 — the busiest year on record — as it heads into its