Shooting Sports USA - January 2011 - (Page 14)

FEATURE // BLACK HILLS Black Hills Ammunition: A Success Story By Maureen Hammerquist, Field Editor he mid-sized South Dakota town of Rapid City, most famous for the four presidents carved in stone at Mt. Rushmore, harbors a success story that’s been more than 30 years in the making. Some people measure success by what they get. But working hard to create products that others’ depend upon and taking pride in every endeavor—that’s a measure of success that Jeff and Kristi Hoffman and Black Hills Ammunition experience every day. Jeff’s passion for shooting began at an early age, learning to hunt, shoot and reload from his grandfather. While a police officer, Jeff was active on the police force shooting league and competed in PPC whenever he could. It was Jeff’s participation on the league that led to the couple’s start in the ammunition industry. In 1981, a fellow officer left the force to start his own ammunition business and hired Jeff to help make ammo. Six months later, the Hoffman’s had the opportunity to buy into the business. It was a risky venture at the time, with Jeff working three jobs and the couple’s need for a $12,000 business loan. With Jeff’s father as a cosigner of the loan and offering the title to his truck as collateral, the Hoffman’s mantra was forged: “Failure is not an option.” In 1988, Jeff and Kristi bought out and separated from their business partners, creating Black Hills Ammunition (BHA). Black Hills’ earliest customers were dealers and law enforcement, important clientele to this day. As their company With proven performance and extreme accuracy, it’s no wonder that this premium hunting ammunition is finding success with long range shooting competitors. T became recognized for quality products, the Hoffmans branched out to reach a wider customer base, instead of simply focusing on ammunition made by their competitors. Gun manufacturers began to rely on BHA for dependable ammunition during their testing and development processes. The consistent ammunition that Black Hills provides helps gun manufacturers eliminate variables when they are trying to determine whether a problem is with the firearm or ammunition. Some of the leading names that work with BHA include Beretta, Browning, Freedom Arms, Heckler and Koch, Les Baer Custom, Smith & Wesson, and Sturm Ruger, to name a few. The company’s relationship with the military began in 1996 when BHA contracted with the Army Marksmanship Unit. Once world-class competitors began using the Black Hills brand, other branches followed suit. Currently BHA supplies all branches of the U.S. Military’s Service Rifle Teams with their match 5.56 ammunition. In the 30 years since Kristi first convinced Jeff the business was a risk worth taking, BHA has become a household name across the shooting community. It hasn’t been an easy ride, however. At times, challenges seemed insurmountable but the Hoffman’s determination not to fail and their passion for quality helped them survive. “You have to be passionate about what you’re doing and not really realize how badly you can fail. We didn’t accept the possibility of failing,” said Jeff. A strong belief system has also helped 14 SSUSA JANUARY 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Shooting Sports USA - January 2011

Shooting Sports USA - January 2011
Competitors’ Corner
Shooter’s News
Range Bag
Score Sheet
Black Hills Ammunition
Nancy Tompkins Interview
NRA Headquarters Shooters
Match Versus Service Rifle
A Page From History
Coming Events
Member Info./Classified Ads

Shooting Sports USA - January 2011