After Ending Sales of ‘Assault-Style’ Rifles, Dick’s Sporting Goods to Remove All Guns from 125 Stores
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Dick’s Sporting Goods ended sales of “assault-style” rifles after the mass killing at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, a year ago — and now the retailer will remove all guns and some hunting gear from 125 of its stores, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The move comes amid shrinking sales for the retail chain; Dick’s reported a 2.2 percent drop in same-store sales in the most recent quarter, the Journal said. CEO Edward Stack blamed the sales dip on the ban of “assault-style” rifle sales. Dick’s also raised the minimum age to purchase guns from 18 to 21 and ended the sale of high capacity magazines.
Nevertheless, the decision to remove all guns from 125 stores comes after Dick’s tested the concept in 10 stores last year — and Stack said comparable sales in those stores rose in the most recent quarter, the Journal reported. He said the extra space will be used to sell higher-margin, faster-selling items such as licensed sports gear and outdoor recreation equipment, the paper noted.
The move will commence in August, Bloomberg reported, and may spread to more stores if things go well.
In the aftermath of the Parkland mass killing, Stack told ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos that “looking at those kids and those parents, it moved us all unimaginably.”
“We’re staunch supporters of the Second Amendment. I’m a gun owner myself,” Stack added. “But we’ve just decided that based on what’s happened … with these guns, we don’t want to be a part of this story, and we’ve eliminated these guns permanently.”
The decision angered those who said it flew in the face of the Second Amendment, including a conservative shareholder who confronted Stack directly at a meeting. The National Rifle Association criticized Stack’s “strange business model,” and the National Shooting Sports Foundation expelled Dick’s from its membership, Bloomberg reported.
Stack was one of four CEOs to sign a letter supporting a universal gun control bill that recently passed in the U.S. House of Representatives, Bloomberg added, and he recently joined the business council of gun-control group Everytown.
Concerning Dick’s ban on sales of “assault-style” rifles, Stack last month told CNBC that “I often say: If we had a mulligan, we’d do it all over again.”