Dick’s Sporting Goods CEO admits gun control policies have HURT business, may close stores…

Dick’s Sporting Goods has admitted to investors that their post-Parkland gun control policies have hurt their business and because of that they may end up shutting down their Field & Stream stores:

FREE BEACON – Dick’s Sporting Goods told investors during the Goldman Sachs Retailing Conference that its gun-control stance hurt sales of its hunting business, outdoors business, and that it may close its outdoor-focused Field & Stream stores.

Edward Stack, chairman and CEO of Dick’s, said during the event that the sporting goods chain’s recent 3.9 percent drop in same-store sales was the result of a mix of factors beyond their control as well as some he called “self-imposed.” Specifically, he said, “the decisions we made on firearms” negatively affected their bottom line but the drop in sales was something they expected. They did not, however, regret their decision to change a number of their gun-sales policies and back new gun-control legislation.

“Well I think it’s definitely a factor, and it’s nothing that we didn’t anticipate,” Stack said during the call. “As we put out kind of our guidance for the year and our earnings guidance for the year, we knew this would happen when—we’ve made some decisions on firearms in the past and we’ve had a pretty good idea of what these consequences were going to be. We felt that was absolutely the right thing to do. We would do the same thing again if we had a mulligan, so to speak, to do it again.”

They’d do it again? Sheesh.

Dick’s says they’ve been able to offset the losses from their gun business in other ways. But because some in the gun industry are refusing to do business with them, as well as everyday firearms customers, they’ve got some decisions to make:

Still, Dick’s admitted both firearms customers and the firearms industry have rebutted the retailer because of their gun-control advocacy.

“Well, we’ve made that decision at the end of February, what we’re going to do with firearms,” Stack said. “It’s still a little early to tell. So, we’re taking a look at this. It will depend on a number of things that we’re going to be assessing through the balance of this year. So, we’ve had some vendors who’ve decided based on our decision to not sell the assault-style rifle that was used in the Parkland shooting that they wouldn’t sell us any longer. So, as you know, there’s been some people who said we’re not going to sell you any firearms anymore. We’re not going to sell you our product. We’ve had some other people who’ve indicated that they wouldn’t shop with us any longer. So, we’ve got to take a look, and we’ll assess this through this holiday season, if the brands are going to continue to or not. Some brands are not going to continue to sell [to] us. If consumers [are] upset with us, we will make a decision of what we’re going to do with Field & Stream.”

The company said it may soon close down their entire Field & Stream chain of 35 stores across 18 states.

“My sense is that we can either take a look at closing that store, that concept or reconceptualizing it into a more of an outdoor type concept, and we’re taking a look at all of these things and by the end of—the peak of the hunting season is coming up in—and basically, the end of the third and the beginning of the fourth quarter and as we move into the end of the fourth quarter, we’ll make a decision as to what we’re going to do,” Stack said.

As a proud gun owner, I’m quite happy that the firearms community has taken a stand against Dick’s and their gun-control policies. I’ve been anticipating that they would end up shut down their Field & Stream stores, especially in areas where there’s other strong competition like Academy Sports.

Regardless of what they end up doing, I’ll never shop there again and that appears to be a sentiment widely held. And it isn’t going to change as long as they maintain that their gun-control policies were the right thing to do.

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