Spokane Journal of Business

Sharp Shooting Indoor Range pulls trigger on ownership change

Firearm retailer, range sold to second generation

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Sharp Shooting Indoor Range & Gun Shop Inc. has changed hands, but the 26-year-old company will remain a family business.

Jeremy Ball says that as of July 1, his parents Robin and Steve Ball retired and sold the business to him and his wife, Katie.

Ball says ownership transition conversations had been ongoing for years. 

“We thought there was going to be a perfect time to do this,” Ball says. “Then we realized that that actually is not the case. There is never a perfect time to transition a company.”

Ball, age 37, has spent 12 years working at the range and gun shop at 1200 N. Freya Way, in East Spokane. He was most recently general manager. Now, he’s owner and president. Ball says Katie is a pharmacist, but she’s spent time helping out with the back-end operations of Sharp Shooting and will likely become more involved in its day-to-day activities.

Ball says Sharp Shooting has 15 employees, and about 1,400 people are currently members of the shooting range, meaning they receive unlimited use of the range, which has 22 shooting lanes in two separate bays. A monthly individual membership is $25; discounts are available for seniors, law enforcement, and military customers.

Little will change for Sharp Shooting’s customers, Ball says. He’ll focus on efficiency behind the counter, but won’t make any drastic decisions. As the second-generation owner, Ball says his job is to “not screw it up.”

“It’s important to me that we don’t have any massive changes, as an organization,” he says. “Our end goals have always been to bring more people into the shooting sports industry and to connect with people through the use of firearms.”

Overall, Ball says revenue is trending significantly upward. He says that multiple factors have influenced business over the past couple of years. In the early days of the pandemic, Sharp Shooting was considered nonessential and was closed. 

However, later in the year, the business reopened and saw high demand due to civil unrest and an election cycle.

“The firearms industry is always upended during times of elections,” Ball says. 

Sharp Shooting was founded by Robin and Steve Ball in 1995 and has remained in the same 14,000-square-foot building since its inception.

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Virginia Thomas
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Reporter Virginia Thomas has worked at the Journal since 2017 and covers the banking and finance industries. As a reporter, she loves learning about Spokane's many growing industries. She enjoys travelling with her husband, snuggling with her cats, and cross stitching.

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