Crimson Trace

SUBSCRIPTION    SUBMIT RELEASES    ADVERTISE    ARCHIVES    CONTACT                                  FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2018
— EDITOR’S NOTE

In observance of the Presidents Day federal holiday we will not be publishing any services on Monday, February 19. We will resume our normal schedule on Tuesday, February 20. 


— AMMUNITION

New HEAVYWEIGHT TSS from Federal Premium has a payload of No. 7 or 9 HEAVYWEIGHT Tungsten Super Shot that provides the highest pellet counts possible—up to double those of lead No. 5 loads of the same weight. The product line includes various 12- and 20-gauge offerings, as well a low-recoil .410 load.


— COLLEGIATE COMPETITIONS

Scott Ellis of the University of Tennessee-Knoxville bass team  ended up with his first college fishing career win last weekend, landing a 9.64-pound Sam Rayburn Bass to take the Texas Lunker Challenge.


— COMPETITIONS

Bushnell announces the signings of Josh Eernisse, Robert Upegui and Kim Tran to Bushnell’s Sponsored Shooter program. They will represent Bushnell at USPSA, Steel Challenge, 3 Gun, and PRS competitions


 High school and college age anglers are the focus of special activities next Sunday, February 25 at the Wisconsin Fishing Expo taking place at the Aliant Energy Center in Madison. Young anglers wearing their fishing team jerseys will be admitted free of charge, plus Shimano ‘s ‘Varsity Program’ will present a special seminar on career opportunities in the fishing industry


February 19-25 Winter Range rides into Phoenix, Arizona, transforming the Ben Avery Shooting Facility into a festive scene from the Old West where more than 1,000 competitors from around the world will take part in the 27th annual Single Action Shooting Society’s national championship of Cowboy Action Shooting.


— CONSERVATION

The Michigan DNR is making plans to commemorate 115th anniversary of state’s first tree nursery and the 85th anniversary of the Civilian Conservation Corps


The Conservation Fund and Roanoke Island Historical Association (RIHA) announced Thursday a unique partnership that will support the future of America's longest running symphonic outdoor drama and preserve the historic and natural landscape surrounding the Fort Raleigh National Historic Site. 


— ENFORCEMENT

A Westfield man has been charged with a wildlife violation after a water monitor lizard and a dwarf caiman were found on his property.  


— EVENTS

One last Eagle Watch will be offered Feb. 25 through DNR’s Upper Wabash Interpretive Services. Due to winter weather, this has been reduced to a one-day event. 


Indiana's Department of Natural Resources will have a strong presence at the Indianapolis Boat, Sport and Travel Show, Feb. 16-25, at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. 


The 2018 Western Hunting & Conservation Expo (Hunt Expo) closed on Sunday, February 11. Over 50,000 attendees passed through the halls of Hunt Expo and the auctions, tag sales, and other fundraisers combined to raise over $7 million for the conservation efforts conducted by the Mule Deer Foundation and Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife.


Mossy Oak Obsession will be displayed on a wide variety of products at the 42nd Annual NWTF Convention and Sport Show in Nashville, Tennessee, at Mossy Oak’s booth (#701).


Visit Styrka and its line-up of high-quality, affordable optics at the Nation's Best Sports Spring Market February 15 to 19, 2018, at the Fort Worth Convention Center, Fort Worth, Texas.


— FIREARMS

Savage is pleased to offer hunters and other serious shooters a new field-ready rifle-and-optics package that combines the company’s proven Model 110 platform with a factory-mounted, bore-sighted Bushnell Engage scope. 


— FISHERIES

“The warmer days and cold nights we normally have in late February and early March offer some of our best ice fishing of the year,” said Vermont Fish & Wildlife Commissioner Louis Porter. 


The Arizona Game and Fish Department plans to stock rainbow trout this spring into the lower 3 mile walk-in section of Lees Ferry, a blue-ribbon trout fishery below Glen Canyon Dam in northern Arizona.


— GEAR

Streamlight Inc. introduced the ProTac HL 5-X USB rechargeable system, the newest and brightest addition to the ProTac series of tactical lights.  Delivering up to 3,500 lumens, the new light comes with two of Streamlight’s new 18650 lithium ion batteries with an integrated micro USB charging port and a charge cord. 


— HUNTING

If you want to hunt big game animals in Utah this fall, the clock is ticking. Applications for hunting permits are due no later than 11 p.m. on March 1.


— INDUSTRY

Gun Tote’n Mamas™ is pleased to present their complete line and new for 2018 products this year at the NBS Spring Semi-Annual February market in Fort Worth, Texas.


Join Sports Afield Consumer Products at NBS booth 2230 in Fort Worth and Mid-States booth 1050 & 1052 in Minneapolis to check out all the new products they have to offer. 


 Gun Tote’n Mamas™ will present their complete line and new for 2018 products this year at the Sports, Inc. February Outdoor Sporting Goods show in Phoenix, Arizona.


Viridian Weapon Technologies is pleased to announce the addition of Kevin Skalicky as National Sales Manager. Skalicky will oversee the implementation of the FACT Duty Weapon-Mounted Camera with law enforcement agencies and manage strategic accounts in the United States. 


Big Rock Sports announced the retirement of Senior Merchandise Manager Rocky Conroy. Conroy began his career at Big Rock in 1989.


— JOBS

American Outdoor Brands (AOB) is seeking candidates for the position of Product Engineer II for their Springfield, Massachusetts, facilities.  The chosen candidate will perform engineering tasks either as the administrator of a small project requiring standardized course of action, or as the administrator of an assigned segment of a larger project.


American Outdoor Brands is seeking qualified candidates for the available position of Manufacturing Shift Supervisor (2nd Shift) at their Deep River, Connecticut facility.


— MEDIA

The all-new mossyoak.com delivers Mossy Oak’s extensive library of free, original and engaging content accessible on any device.


— NEW PRODUCTS

FLIR Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: FLIR) announced Thursday their most advanced solid-state marine radar, the Quantum® 2 with doppler target identification technology.


Browning Camping is excited to introduce the Vortex sleeping bag featuring a top layer filled with waterproof down and a bottom layer filled with TechLoft Micro synthetic insulation.


— NOTICES

Boaters and other outdoor recreationists are advised that the Palo Verde Boat Ramp at Canyon Lake will temporarily close from March 1 through March 17 for a facility improvement project.


— ONLINE

SCCY Industries, LLC launches an online store due to popular demand. After many requests for apparel and SCCY branded items the decision to launch e-commerce was made. 


— ORGANIZATIONS

Dallas Safari Club's Convention & Expo welcomed more than 50,000 attendees. Membership is now at an all-time high of 6,339, and the show raised nearly $7.5 million which will fund grants that carry out DSC's mission and programs.


The National Wild Turkey Federation presented Pepco Holdings, an Exelon Company, with the prestigious Energy for Wildlife National Achievement Award at the 42nd Annual Convention and Sport Show in Nashville.


— PARTNERSHIPS

For two years, B&W Trailer Hitches and UrgeMedia have been working together to reach outdoor enthusiasts on a variety of digital and television platforms and have renewed their partnership through 2018.


— PROTECTIVE GEAR

Radians showcased their ladies aqua Lowset Range Combo at the 2018 SHOT Show.  The range combo is a convenient safety solution for new female shooters who are in the market for both ear and eye protection. 


— RADIO

Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World Radio host Rob Keck is broadcasting from the 42nd annual convention and sport show of the National Wild Turkey Federation in the beautiful Gaylord Opryland resort.


G3 Certified Guide, Captain Brad Durick, joins Ken on this week’s show. Captain Brad is a guide on the Red River in North Dakota and the author of Cracking the Channel Catfish Code and Advanced Catfishing Made Easy. Durick has over a decade of guiding experience and will share his insight on Channel Cats.


Should we be training and arming teachers? Plus, knowing the gun laws and regulations for traveling state to state, and more, this week on Tom Gresham's Gun Talk Radio, the original nationally-syndicated talk show about guns and the shooting sports. 


— SHOOTING GEAR

 Real Avid releases their latest gun cleaning products. These include the Spot-Light Precision Cleaning Kit and Accu-Grip Picks and Brushes. 


— STATES

The Alabama Conservation Advisory Board (CAB) will hold its first scheduled meeting of 2018 on Saturday, March 3, in Montgomery, Ala. 


The Wyoming Women's Foundation (WYWF) announced today that its scholarship application for the 2018 Wyoming Women's Antelope Hunt opened on February 15.


— TELEVISION

Terry fulfills a lifelong dream and heads to Australia with hopes of shooting a Water Buffalo. Along for the trip is Bill Bassham of Trophy Expeditions and Skip Knowles of Predator nation.


— WASHINGTON

The Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies applauds the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Federal Lands hearing five bills, including Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R.4647) and the Modernizing the Pittman-Robertson Fund for Tomorrow's Needs Act of 2017 (H.R.2591).  


— WILDLIFE

Each winter, aerial survey teams of biologists from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service make visual estimates of ducks, geese and swans along the state’s coast and shoreline. This year, teams counted about 1,023,300 waterfowl, well above the 812,600 birds observed during 2017 and higher than the five-year average of 851,980.


A team of Texas A&M AgriLife scientists led by Dr. Charles Randklev in Dallas now works alongside collaborators from Laredo Community College and the Illinois Natural History Survey to better understand the Texas hornshell mussel's ecology and taxonomy. Their goal is to identify contributing factors to the Texas hornshells’ decline and provide data to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department to aid in its protection and recovery.


See thousands of snow and Ross’ geese lifting off Gunnison Bend Reservoir amid honks and the beating of wings, on Feb. 23 and 24 as the Delta Chamber of Commerce hosts the annual Delta Snow Goose Festival.


 A month of viewing bald eagles in Utah wraps up Feb. 24 with a free viewing event in northeastern Utah.


— YOUTH

Vermont Trout Unlimited announces year eight of their fly fishing camp for Vermont teens ages 13 to 16.  Teens interested in either learning the art of fly-fishing or improving their basic skill level along side some of Vermont’s most accomplished fly anglers, are invited to apply. 


FEATURE
INDUSTRY HAPPENINGS

Now that the news is formally out that Remington’s management is taking the radical step of bankruptcy to get rid of crushing debt service -and the owner (Cerberus) that essentially created that problem- there are plenty of emails and text messages flying around regarding the deal and players involved.

My first note was about my observation that the new owners of Remington will include investment groups Franklin Templeton and JP Morgan. The note accurately asked if anyone “really believes that they (Templeton and Morgan) will hold that equity for longer than they have to?”

Short answer: no. And more especially now in light of the tragedy in Florida. But it didn’t seem appropriate to make that kind of speculative observation before the deal had been filed. If the bankruptcy deal is approved, it will be a beginning, not an end of the business challenges Remington will still face.  

But I’m hearing there are suitors already lining up for the chance to acquire that Remington equity - and the equity of “other publicly facing financial firms” who don’t want to own a piece of a firearms company. 

In other words, the investors are willing to provide an exit means for investment groups with shareholders like the California Teachers Retirement Fund. They don’t want any fund they hold invested in gun companies- no matter what their financial performance indicates.

Many companies are crying the blues about an industry turndown. Others are continuing to quietly make money by tending their business. It’s a strategy that works.

Finally, a quick response to a financial analyst who accused me of taking a cheap (parting) shot at Cerberus over the Remington debacle.  He pointed out that Cerberus has made investors lots of money on deals. 

I’ll grant him that, but Remington will go down alongside Chrysler, Mervyn’s, ANC Rental (National and Alamo ownership group), and....GMAC financing. 

In fairness, Cerberus isn’t the first speculative investment group to crash and burn in the firearms industry- just the latest. 

In other industry news, one group that was severely criticized for their performance a decade ago is the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas. When they first hosted a SHOT Show, it was said you could “still smell the exhaust fumes” in the garage areas they’d hastily converted into meeting space.

I remember that SHOT well- and it was an unmitigated navigational mess. But things have changed-for the better for attendees. 

 
The NSSF has extended their deal with the Sands Convention Center in Las Vegas. SHOT will convene there at least through 2027. NSSF photo.

In recognition of those improvements, the NSSF has extended their deal with the Sands. That’s proof that positive change is possible- with cooperation. Not long before the fortieth SHOT Show convened in Las Vegas, plenty of people were wondering if SHOT would even be welcome there after last year’s shooting tragedy.

In Washington, the House has passed legislation that the Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) says will save outdoor companies millions of dollars. It’s called the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) and it’s essentially a program that provides duty-free access to the U.S. markets for “certain eligible products” from 100 developing countries including the Philippines, Thailand and Indonesia.

The products list was expanded to include backpacks, duffels, and other travel goods last year by President Trump after a lobbying effort by OIA and outdoor companies. The change resulted in an estimated $90 million in savings. 

That’s a lotta backpacks, duffels and “other travel goods”. 

The GSP now moves to the Senate. As it does, we’ll keep you posted.

—Jim Shepherd

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