Vista Outdoor CFO to step down early 2018

Stephen Nolan, Vista Outdoor's chief financial officer, will part ways with the company Feb. 1, 2018. (Photo: Vista Outdoor)

Stephen Nolan, Vista Outdoor’s chief financial officer, will part ways with the company Feb. 1, 2018. (Photo: Vista Outdoor)

A second top executive will depart Vista Outdoor in less than a year, according to the company’s regulatory filings published last week.

Chief Financial Officer Stephen Nolan — in agreement with the company — will leave his position effective Feb. 1 “to pursue other opportunities.” His severance package includes a lump sum payment of his annual salary of $515,000, a pro-rata portion of his annual bonus, stock options and an additional payout of $15,000 for healthcare costs.

Nolan’s exit comes six months after Vista Outdoor Chief Executive Officer Mark DeYoung headed into early retirement.  Christopher T. Metz took over the post in October and began taking dramatic steps to “stabilize the company” amid double digit earning losses in the first and second quarter — including ousting Shooting Sports Segment President Bob Keller and divesting three brands from Vista’s sports protection business: Bollé, Serengeti and Cébé.

The company further slashed costs last quarter through inventory and workforce reductions “to better align product with demand” — a familiar narrative heard across the gun industry as manufacturers re-calibrate under the “new normal” in a post-Obama sales climate.

“The market contraction and competitive environment … will have more of an impact in the second half of the year than it did in the first half, including the full impact of the ammunition pricing action, which we took in the first and second quarters,” Nolan told investors last month after Vista reported a 25 percent decline in second quarter earnings. “While we have taken actions to reduce costs, these initiatives have been more than offset by persisting market conditions.”

Vista owns more than three dozen companies in firearms, ammunition and shooting accessories, including Savage Arms, Stevens, Federal Premium, Speer and American Eagle. It also holds brands in the outdoor lifestyle market.

The company anticipates its 2018 sales will not exceed $2.26 billion — a 2 percent reduction over first quarter guidance.

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