Vista Outdoor Buying Remington Ammunition
Vista Outdoors leaders rang the closing bell on the New York Stock Exchange in September 2019. Vista Outdoor's Twitter account

Vista Outdoor Buying Remington Ammunition

Anoka company will pay $81.4 million for part of bankrupt business.

Anoka-based Vista Outdoor Inc. has been named the successful bidder for part of the ammunition business of the bankrupt Alabama-based Remington Outdoor Company Inc. Vista Outdoor is slated to pay $81.4 million for the assets. The deal is subject to a Tuesday hearing on the sale in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Alabama.

Vista Outdoor will acquire Remington’s ammunitions manufacturing facility in Lonoke, Arkansas, Remington brand ammunition, related accessories and intellectual property.

Vista Outdoor is not buying Remington’s firearms business. The company is being broken up in bankruptcy with seven different bidders being named for different parts of its business. Even though gun sales have been increasing, Remington filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in July – its second bankruptcy filing in two years.

“Remington ammunition and accessories have a storied role in America’s sporting heritage, with a legacy dating back to 1816,” said Chris Metz, Vista Outdoor CEO in a statement. “We are excited and honored to add the iconic Remington brand and green box to Vista Outdoor’s portfolio of ammunition brands, and Remington accessories to our portfolio of Hunting and Shooting Accessories.”

According to Vista’s announcement of the deal, Remington ammunition and accessories brands had sales of approximately $200 million in calendar year 2019.

Vista reported sales of $1.8 billion for its fiscal 2020 which ended March 31. The company posted a net loss of $155.1 million for the year, its fourth consecutive year of bottom-line losses.

Vista Outdoor generates 68 percent of sales from its Shooting Sports segment and 32 percent of sales from Outdoor Products. The company’s annual filing indicated that it had approximately 4,400 employees at the end of March.

Vista Outdoor was spun off from Alliant Techsystems Inc. in 2014. Alliant Tech is an aerospace and defense company that was based in Minnesota until 2011; it is now headquartered in Arlington, Virginia.

Though the company is still chasing the ammunition market, it’s apparently moving away from firearms. Last summer, Vista Outdoors sold its own firearms brand for $170 million as part of its broader “transformation plan,” which calls for divesting from some brands and pursuing better-performing product categories. At the time, Metz said the decision to sell the firearms brand was “difficult,” but that it was ultimately the “correct choice.”

The company’s target categories include ammunition, hunting and shooting accessories, hydration bottles and packs, outdoor cooking products, and cycling and ski helmets and accessories.