Smith & Wesson reported on Thursday that its revenue more than doubled, compared to the year-ago quarter, as the gun industry benefited from frenetic demand prompted by fears of civil unrest.
Smith & Wesson (NASDAQ: SWBI), one of most prominent gun companies in America, reported a 128% gain in quarterly net sales compared to the year-ago quarter, to $278 million. The venerable gun company, based in Springfield, Mass., also reported a significant increase in net income to $55 million for the quarter, or 97 cents per diluted share, compared to $1.7 million in the year-ago quarter, or 3 cents per diluted share. Chief Executive Office Mark Smith attributed the company’s record sales to a growing number of first-time gun buyers, and the company’s ability to expand its manufacturing capacity to handle the unprecedented surge in demand. “This achievement clearly demonstrates our ability to rapidly respond to increases in demand,” said Smith during a call with investors. He said the company’s “flexible manufacturing model” allows the company to ramp up manufacturing without adding infrastructure that would sit idle during downturns. Smith & Wesson outsources some of its manufacturing to roll with the ebb and flow of demand, without expensive commitments to expanding capacity. Gun companies remember all too well the massive increase in demand they experienced during the Trump-Clinton campaign, only to suffer a steep drop-off in sales when President Trump won the White House. Gun advocates’ fears of gun control, which drove sales during an epidemic of mass shootings, evaporated with the victory of the National Rifle Association-endorsed president. [full article]