by Joseph P. Tartaro | Executive Editor
San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera filed a lawsuit on Feb. 9 against five gun parts suppliers, alleging they violated a state law banning the sale of high-capacity magazines by selling them in pieces and marketing them as “repair kits,” according to the Los Angeles Times.
The lawsuit, filed in San Francisco County Superior Court, alleges that online retailers Badger Mountain Supply of Washington, 7.62 Precision of Alaska, Shooters Plus of Mississippi, LAK Supply of Wyoming and BuyMilsurp.com of Florida are engaged in unfair or fraudulent business practices.
There was no comment from the companies as TGM went to press.
Herrera alleges in court papers that the companies are violating California’s ban on high-capacity magazines by marketing and selling them to customers in the state under the guise of repair kits or rebuild kits. The kits are disassembled, but customers can easily put together the high-capacity magazines, according to the lawsuit.
“These kits are not individual magazine parts to replace, say, a worn out spring or a cracked baseplate in a lawfully processed magazine,” the lawsuit states. “Rather, they are complete parts of disassembled large-capacity magazines packaged under the guise of a kit. Purchasers can readily assemble the parts into brand-new, fully functional large-capacity magazines.”
The lawsuit is seeking $2,500 in civil penalties for each act of fraudulent competition, the cost of the lawsuit and a court order prohibiting the companies from marketing or selling large-capacity magazine repair kits or other disassembled magazines in California. Herrera is also seeking a court order to require the companies to state on their websites that it is illegal to buy “repair” or “rebuild” kits or any disassembled large-capacity magazine in California, according to the lawsuit.
Acquisitions & Expansions
Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has gone on a shopping spree and e-commerce firms are their target, according to Footwear News.
In presumably another bid to compete against Amazon.com, the mega retailer announced recently that it has acquired online outdoor seller Moosejaw Mountaineer for an all cash deal of $51 million. The buy comes just weeks after Walmart announced that it had purchased online footwear, clothing and accessories retailer Shoebuy.com and months after it bought Jet.com.
In addition to its online presence, Moosejaw also operates 10 physical stores and carries more than 400 brands, including Patagonia, The North Face, Marmot and Arc’teryx.
Walmart said that Moosejaw — which was founded in 1992 in Michigan and is headquartered in Madison Heights, MI— will continue to operate its site and stores as it has in the past and will be run as a stand-alone and complementary brand to Walmart’s other e-commerce sites.
“Apparel and accessories is now the number-one category for digital commerce, according to comScore, and we gain the experience of another well-established, e-commerce player, this time in the active outdoor category,” Walmart said.
Moosejaw CEO Eoin Comerford, his executive team and Moosejaw’s 350-plus employees will continue to be based in Michigan, the company said.
Similar to its prior e-commerce acquisitions, Walmart is offering interested Moosejaw suppliers an opportunity to expand their reach by selling through Jet.com and the company’s other e-commerce sites.
In the five years before the Jet.com deal, the retailer acquired more than 15 startups.
TANDEMKROSS, of Hookset, NH, an innovative manufacturer of after-market firearms accessories, has acquired firearms accessories brand RimEdge.
RimEdge, founded by well-known competitive shooter Ron Oliver, will become a sub-brand of TANDEMKROSS, offering cutting edge firearms accessories sourced from around the world.
“RimEdge gives us a huge boost as it is well known in the niche rimfire competition market, synonymous with innovation,” said TANDEMKROSS Business Development Director Bryan Haaker. “TANDEMKROSS is going to take it to the next level. This brand will help us bring competitors the most unique and innovative shooting sports products not just from the U.S. but from all around the world. If you are looking for that slightest edge to step up your game and become world class, shooters are going to want RimEdge products in their competition firearm.”
RimEdge will offer affordable, world-class accessories for competition shooters, backed by the well-known customer service and quality standards of TANDEMKROSS.
Under TANDEMKROSS ownership, RimEdge will offer competition-ready accessories for rimfire firearms, beginning with a product line for the popular Ruger® 10/22.
Three Ruger® 10/22 accessories – the “KrossFire” CNC-Machined Bolt, “Spartan” Skeletonized Charging Handle and “Fireswitch” Extended Magazine Release – are currently available to TANDEMKROSS dealers and will be available to the public in the coming weeks exclusively on TANDEMKROSS.com.
Heckler & Koch (HK) will invest $28.5 million to expand its existing operations in Columbus, GA, according to a recent company press release. The new 50,000 square-foot facility in the Corporate Ridge Business Park will be ready in the summer of 2017 at which time HK will consolidate its New Hampshire operations into Columbus.
HK worked closely with the Georgia Department of Economic Development, the Greater Columbus Georgia Chamber of Commerce and the Development Authority of Columbus prior to making the decision that is expected to create 84 new jobs over the next 2 years.
“HK’s new US factory will make use of advanced manufacturing technologies and will be staffed by German and American engineers and technicians,” said Francisco Hidalgo, CEO of HKUSA. “The HK products will maintain the same level of quality and reliability that the consumer has grown to expect from HK. Our company motto is and will remain ‘No Compromise’.”
The SHOT Show
The 39th Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show, owned and operated by the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), signaled a positive year ahead for the firearms industry. Strong attendance, upbeat buyers and sellers, and a series of packed special events that collectively made up “SHOT Week” resulted in one of the top-rated SHOT Shows.
The show spanned January 17-20 at the Sands Expo. Industry professionals packed the aisles from the opening bell, and attendance totaled nearly 65,000, surpassing last year’s turnout to make it the second most attended SHOT Show ever.
At one of the show’s biggest events, the NSSF State of the Industry Dinner on the first day, NSSF President and CEO Steve Sanetti, in a speech titled “A New Hope,” listed a series of priorities that industry will focus on to help protect its future and that of its customers.
“Our overriding hope is that when it comes to helping stop the misuse of firearms by criminals, and preventing access to them by legally prohibited felons, the violently mentally ill, and the drug gangs who terrorize disarmed inhabitants of our cities, the American public will realize we are all on the same side.”
There were thousands of products for buyers to see on the show floor, encompassing firearms, ammunition, accessories, optics, knives, gun safes, apparel and law enforcement equipment, among other categories. More than 500 new products from 338 companies were on display in the show’s New Product Center, sponsored by U.S. Concealed Carry Association. In addition to the more than 1,600 exhibiting companies on the main show floors, the NEXT 2.0 Pavilion provided first-time vendors from the show’s extensive waiting list with welcome visibility and potential new customers.
SHOT Show is the largest trade show of its kind in the world, attracting attendees from more than 100 countries. “I think we’ve arrived at a point where we’re truly balancing the needs of an enormous crowd of industry professionals with the venue and services they need to successfully set the course of their businesses for the months ahead,” said Chris Dolnack, NSSF Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, “That’s not a small feat, and we are pleased to see that our efforts to produce a continuously high-quality show has once again paid off.”