3 Reasons why SHOT was Tremendous Success for Acme United

Last week’s SHOT Show was an outstanding success for Acme United’s (ACU – $18.90) Camillus, Western and Cuda brands. The SHOT Show in Las Vegas is Acme United’s biggest marketing event of the year, and as such a good indicator of how well the Company’s new products for 2015 are received by distributors and consumers.

Rick Constantine, Vice President and General Manager at Acme, was quoted saying: “It was the best Shot Show in years for our Company”. He saw three main reasons for this. First, the Company’s booth was ideally located right at the entrance of the exhibit hall, which made sure that every visitor had to pass by the stand (see slideshow below).

Secondly, a great deal of new products were launched. Camillus, for example, presented the completely re-designed Carnivore X machete, the ‘Seven’ series folding knife line and an updated version of the highly successful Heat, Sizzle and Wildfire knives. Also, the once popular Western knife brand was re-launched with all new designs, packaging and branding. Although similar to Camillus, a lifetime guarantee is also offered on all Western products, they have a lower entry level price point. This is, amongst others, achieved by using blades that are three times harder than stainless steel, instead of applying a Titanium Carbonitride Bonding that makes Camillus blades up to ten times harder than regular steel. In addition, the Cuda fishing tools, which were officially presented in the summer last year at ICAST, one of the largest sportfishing trade show in North America, made their first appearance at SHOT (Also see New Products below).

The third reason why the show was such a success for the Company was because Camillus launched a new line of combat knives in collaboration with Jared Ogden and Grady Powell. Ogden & Powell are the stars in the highly popular TV show, Ultimate Survival Alaska as seen on the National Geographic Channel. Navy Seal and Green Beret military experts, Ogden & Powell, use Camillus tools exclusively in the current season and signed autographs during the second day of the Shot Show.

New Products Launched at SHOT

As mentioned above, many new products were shown for the first time to distributors and potential customers. The Carnivore X machete being one of them. The Camillus team listened very closely to customer feedback on previous Carnivore models and came up with a brand new design. Camillus integrated a quadruple edge backbone saw that expands the entire length of the backbone, perfected the gut hook and integrated a stinger/trimming knife. In addition, it has an extremely ergonomic and highly durable zytel handle. Best of all, although the Carnivore X is significantly improved over previous Carnivore models, the price remains the same at $29.99.

The brand new folding knives family named “Seven” was also revealed to the public. The name not only refers to the seven inches overall length of the knives, but also to the shape of the handle. The blades are made out of AUS-8 steel and are Titanium Bonded.

The Heat, Sizzle and Wildfire knives, which were originally brought to the market about ten years ago, received a complete makeover. The knives continue to be popular thanks to their quick launch technology. The blade is revealed in an instant, simply by pushing the blade tang. The blades have a Carbonitride Titanium Bonding, making them hold an edge 10X longer than untreated blades.

The Cuda fishing tools were also a big hit at SHOT. The fishing gear, which includes snips, wire cutters, scale/skin grippers, knives and scissors, was developed and rigorously tested in fresh and saltwater environments by Cuda Pros, to ensure the highest quality and reliability.

These Pros are well-known fishing personalities through their participation to popular television shows such as Real Fishing, the World Fishing Network’s Hookin’ Up, and National Geographic Channel’s hit series Wicked Tuna.

Thanks to these celebrity fishing pros backing the products and Cuda winning a “Best of Show” award at ICAST last year, the brand keeps attracting a lot of press. So it’s no wonder that numerous distributors stopped by at the show to see the new gear and many retail chains will soon offer the entire Cuda line.

Finally, we also learned that Les Stroud didn’t attend SHOT because he’s filming new episodes of the popular TV show, Survivorman, in which he continues to promote his line of Camillus tools. In fact, ten new Les Stroud tools will be launched in 2015 to accompany him on his 16 new Survivorman shows. Included in those tools are individual and multi-person survival kits.

Ultimate Survival Alaska

Now in its third season, Ultimate Survival Alaska focuses on survivalist men and women who are dropped off in the Alaskan wilderness where they compete with each other in various wilderness races.

Twelve of the world’s toughest outdoorsmen are divided into four teams and are then dropped off by aircraft in the Alaskan wilderness where they compete in races through Alaska’s unpredictable weather, barren landscapes, and hostile predators.

In each of the 13 legs this season, teams have just 60 hours to make it from start to finish … surviving off the land with only the gear on their backs. For Jared Ogden and Grady Powell, that means Camillus gear.

64,000 Attend 2015 SHOT Show

The Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade Show (SHOT) brings together buyers and sellers of firearms, ammunition, optics, cutlery, apparel, accessories and law enforcement equipment from the United States and more than 100 countries.

Total attendance for the 2015 SHOT Show was nearly 64,000, second only to last year’s record-setting event. Chris Dolnack, the Senior Vice President of the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) said, “This second highest attendance is in keeping with what we saw in the past year — that our industry is in good health and that manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers have a positive outlook for this year.”

More than 1,600 companies filled the convention center’s 640,000 square feet exhibition space. Also, both the national and international media were out in force at the show, totaling 2,500 attendees.

Argo 8×8 Sweepstakes

At SHOT, Camillus also launched a sweepstakes in which the winner drives away with a brand new Argo 8-wheel drive amphibious off-road vehicle worth about $27,000. The machine is powered by a 4-stroke OHV V-Twin liquid cooled 748cc, 30 hp engine. It has a load capacity of up to 1,150 lb. (522 kg) on land or 1,000 lb. (454 kg) on water. It can transport 6 passengers on land, 4 on water and features a towing capacity of 1,800 lb. (816 kg).

Best thing, you can also win the Argo, simply by leaving your contact info on the Camillus website. The winner be announced at next year’s SHOT Show. During the following months, there will be kiosks at many partners and customers to promote the sweepstakes.


The past SHOT Show again gave the industry a very good indicator that a strong sales year lies ahead, which is obviously excellent news for the three Acme United brands that presented their new products. The strong feedback from distributors and customers is another confirmation that Camillus, Western and Cuda are going into the right direction.

With Western entering the lower price segment of the knife market and Camillus continuing to produce more top-quality products, chances are high they will again increase their market share.

Finally, it’s important to recognize the success that Cuda has achieved in the short time that the fishing tools have been on the market. Knowing this is only the beginning, it’s safe to assume that the brand will become another significant contributor to Acme’s results.

We’ll wait until fourth quarter and year-end results are announced in the second half of February to officially change our price target on Acme, but we already foresee a rise thanks to the solid outlook for most of its brands.

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