As the number of gun owners in America has been growing gun stores have been expanding, adding indoor ranges and new training programs. These new consumers are buying more ammo.
At the end of 2013 Cabela’s, a publically traded corporation, had 50 stores with plans to open 13 more in 2014. Bass Pro Shops, a privately held company, had 59 stores and had plans to open about a half dozen more in 2014. One of Bass Pro’s latest store openings was a 104,000-square-foot store in Round Rock, Texas—the second fastest growing city in 2012, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Bass Pro estimated that 116 million people would visit its 77 stores (including Tracker Marine Centers) across America and Canada in 2013—about 40 million more than attend a Major League Baseball game during a typical year.
Ralph Castner, Cabela’s chief financial officer (CFO), says, “A lot of people drive 100 miles or more to go to our stores. We’re expanding to make their drives shorter and to reach new customers. They come a long way because we offer deals on gear, large firearm selections and because our stores host a lot of events and attractions.”