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Process of becoming a shooting supply/ammo dealer

Discussion in 'Shooting Related Threads' started by brumfield_joe, Apr 26, 2011.

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  1. brumfield_joe

    brumfield_joe TS Member

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    Curious as to what the process is to become a shooting supply/ammo dealer ? ANy information is appreciated....
     
  2. Rich219

    Rich219 Active Member

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    Don't waste your time. There is so little markup on ammo that its not funny. I can buy ammo cheaper from Cabela's or the local shop than I can as an FFL unless I'm willing to purchase 2-4 pallets of it at a time.
     
  3. sliverbulletexpress

    sliverbulletexpress TS Member

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    Assuming you are not manufacturing ammo just selling factory, all you need is an FFL and whatever business licenses are required wherever you set up shop. Technically you do not need an FFL but many wholesalers will only sell to FFLs.

    There is some money to be made but you will need a lot of capital to buy enough to resale at a profit. The catch is the manufacturers and wholesalers sell to their established clients first, and since ammo is in short supply most of the time lately it's difficult to buy.

    I suspect importing ammo could be profitable but the Federal licensing and making the Foreign connections would be daunting.
     
  4. oleolliedawg

    oleolliedawg Banned User Banned TS Supporters

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    Many have tried and virtually none have succeeded. If that's all you plan to dabble in you'll lose money every year!!
     
  5. Barry C. Roach

    Barry C. Roach Well-Known Member

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    Lots and lots of start-up capita. But if you have enough for that then there's a lot better business with greater return potential for your investment.

    There are those that do it as a second income producer. You will have to have a lot of extra time on your hands to make it work though. For example like a farmer (LOL)
     
  6. Bob Schultz

    Bob Schultz Well-Known Member Supporting Vendor

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    Contrary to the statement above, there is no shortage of shotshell ammo. If you have a couple hundred grand in cash or a unbelieveable Dunn and Bradstreet rating, the manufacturers will sell you all you want. There is no credit to speak of in the ammo business. The problem is the margins for ammo are so small and the turnover for target ammo in particular is so slow that you would be better off selling most anything else! Yes, I carry ammo in my shop and I make $2.50 per flat. It's a customer service (and I don't run out of ammo to shoot...). I have drop shipment arrangements with Kemen and for orders of 100 flats or more can arrange shipments to my customers. You make about a buck a flat on those deals...whoopie!

    Reloading components are tough too. Thin margins there and its either bulky, heavy or hard to ship (primers, powder). I think the guys that do it must like it or just be masochistic. You can make a whole buck a bag on shot. Thats $80 a ton, you nave to order it, receive it, store it, sell it and probably help load it in the customers car. I don't do reloading supplies as there is always someone 10 cents cheaper.

    If you decide to do this be sure your business model is similar to those who are successful at it. Most sell lots of other stuff that actually has a profit margin. Gamaliel and Graff's come to mind.

    Good luck in your venture, hope it works out for you.

    Bob
     
  7. setool

    setool Member

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    You Guy's have given "SPETACULAR" advise to this person. I own a small shop of my own, non shooting related... CNC machining, and I can be perfectly honest. If you don't have the "billiards" or resources, you are on a path of destruction. May'be I'm wrong, but I've seen too many good souls make mistakes that last too long.............

    Mark Schneider

    p.s. I have done it myself, so...
     
  8. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Don't forget another great nemesis of business.... insurance premiums.
     
  9. Superdog1

    Superdog1 TS Member

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    If you wish to make a small fourtune in the AMMO/reloading business, better start with a Large one!
     
  10. WoodsonEnt

    WoodsonEnt Active Member

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    From someone who tried it - don't do it. It almost bankrupted me. There are the usual expenses of starting up a business. Then there are more. You will need a building that has a dock. You will also need a forklift to unload the supplier's semis. Then, if you do deliveries or vend @ shoots, you will need @ least a 3/4 Ton Truck and enclosed trailer. That is more $$$. While you are getting started in your "dream job", the other guys are filling up their semis to show up @ a shoot and sell cheaper than you are. All of this to make a buck a bag on shot.

    I hate to paint a dim picture, but it is what it is. Everyone told me the same thing I am telling you, but I didn't listen. It took me 2 years to crawl out of the financial mess it put me in. If I was to hit the Powerball Lottery tonight, I would get in the business again. But, this time it would be for fun and not profit....it would also be paid for!

    Matt Woodson
     
  11. sliverbulletexpress

    sliverbulletexpress TS Member

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    I didn't read that he was going to exclusively sell shotgun ammo, Bob knows much more than I about that.
     
  12. XP100

    XP100 Well-Known Member

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    Been doing it for nearly 10 yrs. Gets worse to make a living every year. Don't know how much longer I will be in the business. Everyone is looking to get loading supplies for less money. They will drive 20 miles because someone has shot for .50 a bag less than me and buy 3 bags. They also come in and tell me such & such had primers,wads shot or powder for less than I charge(usually just a few cents less) I tell them thats the place to get it .
    Less & less practice rounds being shot and leagues are down 25 to 35% in shooters.
    I agree on how to make a small forture in the gun, ammo and component business, start with a large fortune.
     
  13. Hap MecTweaks

    Hap MecTweaks Well-Known Member

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    Same advice for winding up with a million dollars shooting trap, start with two!

    Hap
     
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