Franchi USA

SUBSCRIPTION    SUBMIT RELEASES    ADVERTISE    ARCHIVES    CONTACT                                  THURSDAY, JANUARY 26, 2012
— TOP STORY
Outdoor Channel Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: OUTD) announces Tom Hornish's appointment to the position of President and Chief Executive Officer, effective February 1. Mr. Hornish succeeds Roger Werner, who will remain with the company and has been appointed Co-Chairman. The Company expects to make an announcement shortly regarding its plans to fill the Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel positions previously held by Hornish. | For More...

— COMPETITIONS
National Guard FLW College Fishing is headed to Lake Amistad Feb. 4 for the first of four stops in the South Conference. Forty college teams will be competing for a top award of $5,000 and a berth in the South Regional Championship tournament. | For More...

— COMPETITIVE SHOOTING
NRA's Competitive Shooting Division is unveiling the NRA Club Champion Challenge, a new recreational shooting event for people of all ages and skill levels held at the local clubs and ranges. This friendly form of competition promotes participation amongst club or range members as they battle for awards and bragging rights. | For More...

— CONSERVATION
The U.S. House of Representatives has passed H.R. 3117, the Permanent Electronic Duck Stamp Act of 2011, 373 to 1 (with 59 not voting). The Congressional Sportsmen's Foundation has been supportive of this legislation, as it would make it easier for hunters to obtain a stamp and thereby fund conservation. | For More...

As part of a $1 million grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and Southern Company, the National Wild Turkey Foundation (NWTF) will help restore native longleaf pine to 160 acres in Wind Creek State Park. | For More...

— CONTRIBUTIONS
Bushnell Outdoor Products has announced its 2011 contribution to Folds of Honor Foundation will total $200,000. Folds of Honor provides post-secondary educational scholarships to the spouses and children of service members disabled or killed during U.S. military service. | For More...

— EVENTS
The Chicago Outdoor Sportsmen Show, which opens today, will feature headliners including; The Bass University - featuring Bass Pro Mike Iaconelli, Brody the 1400 pound Kodiak Brown Bear and Archer Frank Addington. | For More...

February 2, grab your family and friends for a relaxing evening with your fellow nature lovers for a showing of Webs of Intrigue at Illinois' Cache River Wetlands. | For More...

Squirrel meat will be a first-time addition to the menu at this year's "A Taste of the Great Outdoors" at the Eastern Sports & Outdoor Show (Feb. 4-12, State Farm Show Complex, Harrisburg, PA). In addition to squirrel, this year's offerings will include entrees made with venison, wild turkey, pheasant, and walleye. | For More...

The Hoosier Homestead Gathering, May 5 and 6, at Indiana's Salamonie Lake, will offer guests the opportunity to learn how to simplify their lives using methods like solar energy and raising bees. | For More...

— GEAR
NuFletch's creativity insight now offers fletching that promotes flatter trajectory, increased penetration and simplifies the essential fletching process so critical to maximize arrow performance. | For More...

— HUNTING
Twelve hunting-related incidents were reported to the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission in 2011. Two of those incidents each resulted in the death of one person. | For More...

With goose hunters going out in force this winter and spring, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission is providing hunters with some important safety reminders. | For More...

The hunting of all female mountain lions in southwestern Montana hunting districts 323, 324, 325 and 327, which include portions of Madison and Beaverhead counties, will close at one-half hour after sunset, tonight, Thursday, Jan. 26. | For More...

Central Ohio sportsmen and women who are interested in becoming Hunter Education Instructors are encouraged to register for a training workshop in Columbus on Saturday, March 10th and Sunday, March 11th. | For More...

— INDUSTRY
MidwayUSA's Master Catalog #35 is the perfect guide to the over 100,000 products. As more and more Customers order online, we will focus on serving Customers through digital publications, eBlasts and continuous improvement to our website. | For More...

WildComm would like to congratulate Craig Morgan, host and co-producer of "Craig Morgan All Access Outdoors", on taking home Best Deer and Best Turkey honors at the Outdoor Channel Golden Moose Awards at the 2012 SHOT Show. | For More...

Outdoor writer and television show host, Jim Zumbo, received the Lifetime Achievement Award from The Outdoor Channel at the Golden Moose Awards gala during the recent SHOT Show in Las Vegas. | For More...

Nature Productions announced today it has signed a sponsorship agreement for all of their current productions including, North American Safari, The Bear Whisperer and The Hitmen, with Hawke Sport Optics. | For More...

The Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA) is pleased to announce that Tanner Tedeschi has joined the organization as Communications Manager and Managing Editor of Quality Whitetails magazine. | For More...

— INSTRUCTION
Panteao Productions introduces the latest instructional video from Paul Howe called Intro to Exterior Movement. This latest video takes viewers to the CSAT (Combat Shooting and Training) facility in Nacogdoches, Texas. | For More...

— LAND MANAGEMENT
For the fifth consecutive year, about 44,000 acres of state wildlife land east of Ellensburg, Washington will be closed to motor vehicles Feb. 1 through April 30 to protect wintering elk from disturbance, and in turn reduce elk damage to adjacent private lands. | For More...

— MEDIA
Freshly back from the biggest outdoor show of the year, The Revolution will highlight some of the new outdoor gear that was on display at ATA and SHOT Shows. | For More...

Improve your writing and photography skills July 22-28 at the 2012 Goldenrod Writing Workshop, hosted by the Outdoor Writers Association of America (OWAA) at the University of Montana in Missoula. | For More...

— NEW PRODUCTS
SIG SAUER's Adaptive Carbine Platform (ACP) allows any handgun with an accessory rail to be quickly modified into a personal defense weapon or carbine style firearm. Regardless of the brand, most pistols equipped with an accessory rail can be mounted to the ACP without the need for modification to the base gun. | For More...

SIG SAUER introduces their Fastback series of 1911s. SIG SAUER engineers have redesigned the frame and mainspring housing to create a proprietary rounded backstrap, giving the Fastback a distinctive look and advantage for concealed carry. | For More...

PARA USA announces a new edition to its Classic Series of P14-45 pistols that is designed for home defense. The new P14-45 with Light Rail provides home owners with a high capacity pistol with an integral light rail that will allow them to mount a variety of aftermarket lights, lasers or light and laser combinations to the pistol. | For More...

Designed for tactical operators working covert assignments, PARA USA's new BLACK OPS pistols feature PARA's new all black Ionbond finish. | For More...

— NOTICES
The Gulf Council will convene a Shrimp Stock Assessment Workshop on February 14 - 16, 2012 at the NOAA Fisheries Galveston Laboratory to evaluate the data used in the recent stock assessment and determine whether data uncertainties acknowledged/reported are within normal or expected levels. | For More...

Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area is accepting nominations for its Citizen Task Force. Nominations will be accepted through Feb. 28, 2012. | For More...

Nebraska's Bramble Wildlife Management Area (WMA) now is closed to target shooting. The 93-acre WMA is located along the Platte River 3 miles east of Morse Bluff in Saunders County. | For More...

The Fools Bay Bridge on Grassy Lake Wildlife Management Area (WMA) in Avoyelles Parish, Louisiana has been closed by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) due to safety concerns. | For More...

— OPTICS
Designed to offer exceptional performance and value for hunters and wildlife observers, Redfield® Rebel™ roof prism binoculars now come in 8x42mm and 10x50mm models. | For More...

Leupold® has added the FireDot™ illumination system to its premier riflescope for hunters, the VX®-6. The FireDot system leads the eye naturally to the center aiming point and makes target acquisition quick, precise and simple. | For More...

— ORGANIZATIONS
The American Knife & Tool Institute announces that it is preparing to publish and distribute the "AKTI State of the Industry" report, similar to a document circulated in 2007 which proved to be instrumental in explaining the impact the industry has on American jobs and the economy. | For More...

A new study released by the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation (RBFF) reveals that RBFF's Take Me Fishing™ brand and Take Me Fishing advertising continues to achieve high levels of awareness, and that the campaign is positively affecting decisions to participate in boating and fishing. | For More...

Following a State of the Union address during which the president focused heavily on jobs, economics and natural resources, the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership has released its TRCP 2012 Conservation Policy Agenda, highlighting federal funding challenges and key policy issues central to the nation's hunting and angling traditions. | For More...

Sportsman Channel and Cox Communications will be teaming up to host a Hunt.Fish.Feed event in Oklahoma City on Monday, Jan. 30, serving a special venison dinner at Salvation Army Central Oklahoma Area Command. | For More...

— RADIO
Tom Gresham's Gun Talk welcomes KMAS AM and KMAS FM in Shelton, Washington, as the latest affiliates to add the nationally-syndicated radio talk show to their schedule. | For More...

This week, Dan Small Outdoors Radio features Nebulus Flotation Device inventor John Weinel, deer-management expert Tony LaPratt, fishing guide John Andrew and Jiffy pro- staffer Duffy Kopf. | For More...

— RECOGNITIONS
Today, Maryland DNR Boating Services will present contest winners Steuart and Hamilton Chaney, owners of Herrington Harbour, with a certificate and prizes for their clean marina practices in 2011 at a Clean Marina Workshop in Annapolis. | For More...

— SHOOTING COMPETITIONS
NRA's Competitive Shooting Division is unveiling the NRA Club Champion Challenge, a new recreational shooting event for people of all ages and skill levels held at the local clubs and ranges. | For More...

— SHOT SHOW
The auction of a one-of-a-kind "GLOCK Statue of Liberty Handgun" on GunBroker.com yielded more than $15,000 for programs in support of America's hunting and shooting sports heritage. | For More...

— SPONSORSHIPS
Carbon Express announces its continued relationship with Rick and Julie Kreuter, hosts of Beyond The Hunt, a show that spotlights "the experience" of hunting. | For More...

— STATE PARKS
Attention ice anglers: Colorado Parks and Wildlife and the Collbran Lions Club will be hosting a one-day Ice Fishing Tournament at Vega State Park on Feb. 11. | For More...

Indiana's Clifty Falls State Park will host a bluebird nesting box workshop at Clifty Inn on Saturday, Feb. 18. Participants will assemble a bluebird nesting box and learn about the ecology and needs of bluebirds. | For More...

— TELEVISION
The Union Sportsmen's Alliance's (USA) nationally broadcast hunting and fishing TV Show, Brotherhood Outdoors, took home a 2011 Sportsman Choice Award for Best Combination Show last week during the Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) show. | For More...

Wild TV welcomes back Predator Quest, Innerloc's Out There and Angler & Hunter TV for 2012. | For More...

FEATURE
Industry Stories Gradually Coming to Light
Last week, I intimated (OK, I hinted) that several gun companies were talking about changes that ranged from outright acquisitions to new funding. We'd hoped to have details to report during SHOT Show. Those deals couldn't be confirmed because everyone seemed to busy doing business to talk about their businesses.

But the deals were progressing. Now, the first of those deals, involving Savage Sports Corporation (Savage Arms, Savage Range Systems and BowTech Archery) has been announced. Norwest Equity Partners has announced a "significant investment" in Savage.

The deal closed on January 24, and the investment, according to Norwest's Erik Torgerson, "will help advance market expansion and the continued development of an innovative, diversified products platform." Torgerson says there are significant opportunities for consolidation through "add-on acquisitions."

My interpretation: we have money and there are companies out there that would be good fits, so we may go shopping.

Norwest's Torgerson and Tim DeVries have both joined the Savage board of directors, and longtime Savage CEO Ron Coburn will be staying. Coburn says the new investment means "exploring new business opportunities". The Westfield, Massachusetts based company has more than 600 employees at facilities in Westfield, Lakefield, Ontario, and Eugene, Oregon.

The mergers, acquisitions and investments far from over. The industry's going to see some significant consolidation over the next few weeks.

Not everyone is crowing about big deals.

Aliant Techsystems (ATK) has lost its appeal over a 10-year $850-million ammunition contract awarded to a British company. Last May, ATK lost the contract for the Army's government-owned, 6,900 acre Radford, Virginia ammunition plant to BAE Systems Plc. Radford is the only United States plant that actually makes a key material used in explosives.

The worst might not yet have happened for ATK. With BAE running Radford, investment analysts say they're concerned that ATK might lose the even-larger Army contract to manage Lake City, Missouri's ammunition manufacturing facility when that contract comes up for review in 2013.

Radford was good for about five percent of ATK's sales ($250 million), but losing the Lake City contract would be an even harder hit.

ATK's stock dropped sixty-eight cents per share (1.10%) on news of the failure to win the appeal.

Last week, Cabela's quietly informed its affiliate partners that changes in the Google Advertising Network (GAN) would have a real impact on both Cabela's and the affiliates. Seems Google is "implementing and aligning their search policies within their affiliate network".

The net/net on that "alignment" is the carrying over of Google's editorial ban on advertising of weapons or related items to their advertising policies. So....no commissions collected or paid for any products that fall into those categories. As Cabela's said in their note "this will have a significant impact on Cabela's and its affiliate partners who promote and sell these products."

As my source explained, "Google's affiliate network isn't the only one out there, but for the small business owner, it is one of the easier ones to get involved with and is very easy to use. Now Google isn't going to allow commissions on firearms and firearms-related sales. This is a big blow to small business owners such as myself."

With the proliferation of all sorts of internet commerce, it's only reasonable that businesses in the firearms space would want to participate.

Unfortunately, with major facilitators like Google and PayPal both refusing any firearms-related transactions, it's considerably more difficult than it should be.

Despite the fact the shooting industry remains one of the bright spots in our still-faltering economy, some companies simply will not do business with companies selling products related to firearms. After all, guns do cause violence, right?

It is business discrimination in its purest form, but the discrimination is aimed at guns and gun owners, making it "politically correct" - and that makes it acceptable.

We might not like what we're reporting, but we'll keep you posted.

--Jim Shepherd
Jan 27-29
Kansas ExpoCentre, Topeka, Kansas
Feb 1-4
Mandalay Bay Convention Center, Las Vegas, NV
Feb 2-4
Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada
Feb 4-12
State Farm Show Complex, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Feb 9-12
Salt Palace Convention Center, Salt Lake City, Utah
Feb 10-12
Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center, Nashville, Tennessee
Feb 17-20
National
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