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MA – INDUSTRY INSIDER – Smith & Wesson Stepping Up Production as Sales Soar 140 Percent

One of the nation’s largest gun makers is ramping up production after a record-breaking first quarter in 2020. Smith & Wesson, one of only two publicly traded gun manufacturers in America, reported a 140 percent year-over-year jump in gun sales between the beginning of May and the end of July. The company moved 584,000 guns in that period, an unprecedented demand that caused inventories to fall. That’s why the company has doubled down on its efforts to manufacture more guns in order to meet continuing demand. “As we’ve seen before during these surge periods, these results reflect that despite our record numbers in market share growth, consumer demand for our products during the quarter still exceeded our internal manufacturing capacity levels, ” Mark Smith, Smith & Wesson president and CEO, told investors in a call on Thursday. “We’re continuing to ramp up…. We’re going to go to maximum capacity.” The move comes as Americans have rushed to gun stores at a record pace since March. The first eight months of 2020 have already seen more gun sales than all of 2019. Smith echoed remarks made in July by the CEO of Sturm, Ruger & Co., the other publicly traded American gun company, when he said demand was beyond anything he had previously encountered. “When we get into these surge environments like this, and as you can see from the [gun background check numbers] we’ve never seen one quite this high, the demand in the industry just outstrips the industry’s ability to supply,” Smith said. “And we’re no different. You can look at the inventory numbers from us and from some of the other firearms, retailers, and manufacturers, and I think we’re just out of inventory.”  [full article]

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