Vista Outdoor—parent company of 39 brands that include Federal Premium and Remington Ammunition—reported financial results for its third quarter of Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) earlier this month. The figures cover the three-month period that ended on Dec. 26, 2021 and reflect a new high-water mark in sales at $795 million, up 38 percent. Answers to questions during a follow-up conference call with investors indicates, however, enthusiasts can anticipate a modest price increase on some ammunition in April.
“Our record third quarter results demonstrate that we're successfully executing on our Value Creation strategy and reflect continued high consumer demand for our products,” said Chris Metz, Vista Outdoor CEO. “The power of our brands, combined with our continuous introduction of innovative new products, and lean cost structure has allowed us to offset cost increases through targeted pricing action while absorbing some costs through operational efficiencies to maintain profitable growth across our portfolio. With the acquisition of Stone Glacier, our seventh acquisition in less than 18 months, Vista Outdoor is building a resilient and diverse portfolio and expanding our total addressable market across multiple outdoor recreation categories.”
On Feb. 3, during a follow-up earnings conference call Metz noted, “ … we announced our last price increase in January, which will take effect in April, so that will affect our next fiscal year.” Raw material costs, shortages and shipping backlogs are the chief culprits, but the pandemic has become a production challenge heightened with the Omicron outbreak in. “So, the inefficiencies that we saw with COVID-related vacancies or shortages in labor, we’re quickly working our way through it,” he added. “And we’ve—as you can imagine, we’ve been fighting this for the better part of two years. So we’re, our team is very, very adept at working through those issues. And Omicron, we’ve worked through a lot of those issues. So as we go forward, we continue to believe that our facilities will operate highly efficiently, and it will be kind of normal course, if you will, going forward.”
As for current cartridge scarcity, Metz explained to one caller that if you visit a store, “ … you’ll find that there’s more stock than there were a few months ago. But in total, stocks remain still very low.” He noted centerfire hunting and handgun cartridges—other than 9 mm Luger—remain the toughest to find right now.