Remington Ammunition Looks to Sunnier Days Ahead with Vista Outdoor
Adam Scepaniak 11.30.20
As many hunters and shooters may already know, Remington Outdoor Company filed for bankruptcy (yet again) this summer and it was finally the straw that broke the camel’s back. The numerous name brand companies owned by the umbrella group of “Remington Outdoor Company” came tumbling down. Specifically, the division of Remington Ammunition fell into the hands of Vista Outdoor (which also owns Federal Premium Ammunition, CCI, and several others). For many shooters and the employees of Remington Ammunition, this was one of the best outcomes possible following the bankruptcy auction held in October 2020 in which Vista Outdoor acquired them for $81.4 Million.
Remington Ammunition is based in the town of Lonoke, Arkansas which has roughly 4,250 residents and Remington Ammunition is far and above the largest employer in the quaint, but prideful town. Remington’s ammunition plant in Arkansas was started back in 1969 and after 51 years in operation it has traded hands 6 different times. Some of this is due to high debt over the years and several damaging product lawsuits. Throughout these changes in ownership the Remington Ammunition plant has seen its workforce fluctuate considerably.
- Average Employment: 700 – 800 Employees
- Peak Employment: 1,000+ Employees
- Periods of Bankruptcy: < 400 Employees
During times of burgeoning demand (like balling COVID-19, an election year, and uncertainty in society all into one), Remington Ammunition could see its employment far exceed 1,000 people. Conversely, during severe down turns like a bankruptcy filing their workforce could plummet to fewer than 400 employees. This feast/famine production and employment is something Vista Outdoor looks to stabilize to bring relief to the Lonoke workforce.
Because of the acquisition of Remington Ammunition into the Vista Outdoor portfolio, Vista is bringing back 300 furloughed/laid-off employees to keep supplying us with ammo. Thus far, Vista Outdoor has promised to keep the trademarks and names of Remington Ammunition unique to themselves — the legacy and name of Remington within the world of ammunition will live on.
As with nearly all new company acquisitions, Vista Outdoor is optimistic that between them and Remington Ammunition they will be able to pool resources, processes, intelligence in manufacturing, and be able to produce more ammunition (and better ammunition) than ever before. I believe I speak for the entire shooting community when I say I dearly hope this comes true. Right now Vista Outdoor has $1 Billion in ammunition backorders they are needing to fill. While that number is truly startling and daunting at the same time, perhaps one of the most intriguing quotes to come out of Vista Outdoor since the acquisition of Remington Ammunition was from Vista Outdoor CEO Chris Metz:
“You’ll see more innovation from Remington in the next 10-12 months than you’ve seen in a long time.“
For Vista Outdoor to not only acquire Remington Ammunition, but then to start innovating within the first 12 months would be truly impressive! It is difficult enough as it is to integrate workforces, flesh out what each division will respectively do, and to move forward as one unified unit let alone try and create new products. The only thing that remains is what do you think? Do you believe Vista Outdoor will be able to turn Remington Ammunition around and restore their former glory? What is something you would like to see them innovate and produce as a new product in the next year? As always, let us know all of your thoughts in the Comments below! We always appreciate your feedback.