Another top executive resigns from Vista Outdoor

Outdoor Segment President Dave Allen. (Photo: Vista Outdoor)

Another senior-ranking executive at Vista Outdoor tendered his resignation last week, according to financial regulatory filings.

Dave Allen, president of the company’s outdoor products segment, will leave for other opportunities effective July 27. He joined Vista in May 2016 and took charge of its evolving outdoor business the following year. He’s the fourth top official to leave the company in the last year, following Chief Executive Officer Mark DeYoung’s early retirement,  Chief Financial Officer Stephen Nolan’s departure for Esterline and the elimination of Shooting Sports Segment President Bob Keller.

The company hasn’t released any further information about Allen’s resignation, so far. Vista’s outdoor segment remains in flux as CEO Chris Metz continues implementing a new strategic vision — likely sans guns — designed to stabilize the company amid double-digit earning declines.

“We can confidently say that our core lies in the hunting and shooting sports market and in adjacent activities, such as camping and hiking,” he said. “Our key consumer is someone who participates in these and other outdoor activities.”

Vista owns 55 companies in firearms, ammunition and shooting accessories, including Savage Arms, Stevens, Federal Premium, Speer and American Eagle. Metz told investors earlier this year “the company grew too fast and beyond its core” since splitting with Orbital ATK in 2015. A downturn in sales post-election only compounded the situation, he added.

The decision sell ownership of Savage Arms, announced in early May, however, drew some criticism for appearing to appease investors connected to the corporate backlash against the gun industry in the wake of the Parkland massacre. A Vista spokesperson told while the news came at a bad time, it was decided late last year — long before major banks and retailers began limiting interaction with manufacturers.

“We are now turning our efforts to the rest of our divestiture plan as previously communicated in May,” Metz said last week after announcing the sale of its eyewear brands. “We are excited to build on this momentum and expect to provide further updates on this process during our first quarter earnings call in early August.”

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