Hunting is big business in the United States. According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), 38 million U.S. residents 16 years old and older went fishing and/or hunting in 2001. This includes 34.1 million who fished and 13 million who hunted (the overage of 9.3 million accounted for by those who both fished and hunted).
The USFWS says expenditures by sportspersons totaled $70.0 billion that year. Trip-related expenditures, including those for food, lodging, and transportation, were almost $20.0 billion—28% of all fishing and hunting expenditures—while total equipment expenditures amounted to nearly $41.0 billion, 59% of the total.
The powersports industry has grown substantially during the past few years, with ATVs responsible for much of that growth.
You can hear the cash register ringing now, right? You should be able to, because manufacturers and distributors tell Powersports Business that hunters make up a demographic that is among the most important to them.
“All you have to do is take one good look at the OEM or aftermarket catalogs to see how important a part of this industry hunters really are,” says Jay Lusignan of Arctic Cat, the Northwoods manufacturer of ATVs featuring the Multi-Rack Platform—a unique system of interchangeable accessories designed for hunting, fishing and a variety of other applications. “There’s a lot of product directed specifically at these sportsmen, who were obviously a big part of our decision-making process in bringing out the MRP.”
Tucker Rocky Distributing seems to understand the correlation, too. Tucker spent the past year setting up a deal with Ducks Unlimited that will have the distributor develop a line of “upscale” accessories for ATVs on the hunt, and plans to cross-market the brand through the DU media outlets. Ramps and a line of soft luggage have already been announced, and Tucker says several more items are just about to be released.
Copyright 2003 Powersports Business