Ruger has issued its third quarter report [PDF] for 2018, and for the period it had net sales of $114.9 million—$10.1 million more than the same timeframe in 2017. “In the third quarter of 2018, net sales increased 10% from the third quarter of 2017.”
Although the first half of the year began slow compared to last year, “The estimated unit sell-through of the Company’s products from the independent retailers increased 1% in the first nine months of 2018 compared to the prior year period. For the same period, the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (“NICS”) background checks (as adjusted by the National Shooting Sports Foundation…) decreased 5%.”
A big part of that success at a time when other companies are weathering lethargic consumer interest is innovation. “Sales of new products, including the Pistol Caliber Carbine, the Mark IV pistol, the LCP II pistol, the ED9s pistol, the Security-9 pistol, and the Precision Rimfire Rifle, represented $112.7 million or 30% of firearm sales in the first nine months of 2018.” For the purposes of the statement, firearms introduced in the past two years are included.
The report also said the safety bulletin issued earlier this month for a few Ruger American Pistols is anticipated to cost the company $1 million. All charges associated with the upgrade, which is limited to certain 9 mm versions, are being underwritten by the company.
Although the report may indicate that the last three months signal a modest move from the “new norm,” in new gun purchases, overall sales for the 2018 compared to 2017 are still down. “For the nine months ended September 29, 2018, net sales were $374.5 million and diluted earnings were $2.19 per share,” it explains. “For the corresponding period in 2017, net sales were $404.0 million and diluted earnings were $2.32 per share.”