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Vista Outdoor sells Savage and Stevens firearms brands for $170 million

Published July 8, 2019

ANOKA, Minn. (BRAIN) — Vista Outdoor, owner of Bell, Giro, CamelBak and other bike-related brands, has completed the sale of its Savage Arms and Stevens firearms brands for $170 million to Long Range Acquisition LLC.

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Vista announced in early 2018 that it would divest of its firearms brands and its bicycle-related brands (but not CamelBak). The company later said it planned to sell off the divisions sequentially and that it might retain the bike brands for several more years as it rebuilds them before offering them for sale. Last fall it sold its eyewear brands Bollé, Cébé and Serengeti (Bollé also offers bike helmets).

"Divesting our Savage brand was a key aspect of our transformation plan," said Chris Metz, Vista Outdoor's CEO. "While it was a difficult decision to sell such an iconic brand, I remain confident that this was the correct choice to help Vista Outdoor grow in those categories where we can have leadership positions. Savage is a fantastic business, and it deserves to continue to evolve into other firearms categories. At this time, however, we simply do not have the resources to transform Savage into the full-service firearms company that it deserves to be and, therefore, we determined the brand would be better off with a different owner. We're excited to see Savage reach its full potential under new ownership."

At closing, Vista Outdoor received $158 million. Vista Outdoor said it will use the net after-tax proceeds of the sale to repay outstanding indebtedness.

"Reducing our debt is a key part of turning around our business," said Metz. "Selling Savage and further reducing our overall leverage will improve our financial flexibility and better position the company for long-term growth. We've now rebuilt the company's foundation to provide a more stable base upon which to grow. We have a portfolio of brands that all have the potential to be strong, market leaders in their respective categories and I'm proud of my team's efforts in reshaping the portfolio over the course of the past year."

Topics associated with this article: Mergers & Acquisitions

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