A successful day at the range or in the field is a combination of several key factors working hand in hand: a well-maintained firearm, quality ammunition, and – perhaps, most importantly for personal safety – top-notch ear and eye protection. Memphis-based Radians, Inc., has been protecting shooters and hunters with innovative safety eyewear and hearing protection for seventeen years.
Grand View Outdoors sat down with Joe Smith, Vice President of Radians, to find out more about one of the leaders in personal protective equipment.
Grand View Outdoors:How and when did Radians get its start?
Radians, Inc.: Radians was founded in 1997 basically on the introduction of one product, the AV, a combination hearing (Audio) and eyewear (Visual) protection product. Our focus in 1997 was Safety Eyewear and Hearing Protection in the Sporting Goods channel. Seventeen years later, we have a comprehensive line of quality products for the Sporting Goods channel that includes premium Crossfire by Radians eyewear, electronic and passive earmuffs, disposable hearing protection, high-visibility apparel, and performance gloves. We have partnered with Remington, Bone Collector, and Smith & Wesson to provide our customers with a variety of PPE products that meet the functional and style demands of the marketplace.
GVO:Describe the particulars of your business – the services/products you offer, your typical customer, etc.
RI: Radians offers a comprehensive line of PPE products for the Sporting Goods Industry including ANSI Z87 eyewear, electronic, passive, and disposable hearing protection, gloves, and RadWear high visibility apparel. Our products are sold through authorized distributors and can be found in major retail stores that serve the hunting, shooting, and sport enthusiast. Our end users include hunters, shooters, public safety professionals, law enforcement and first responders, and sport enthusiasts. We also have several products geared towards youth and female shooters, such as our Youth Combo Kit and pink ProAmp electronic earmuff and Pink Performance Shooting Gloves.
GVO: When and how did Radians become involved in the hunting and shooting sports?
RI: After the introduction of the AV in 1997, Radians became more involved in the Sporting Goods industry by listening to our customers and end-users and developing a comprehensive product assortment for hunters and shooters. Radians expanded its team by adding experienced professionals that have a passion for and are active in the Shooting Sports. With this expertise, Radians was able to introduce new products, such as custom-molded earplugs and electronic hearing protection. The success of these new products paved the way for more growth and more new products.
GVO:Describe several keys to the success and longevity of your business.
RI: Several key factors have contributed to Radians’ success and longevity. We listen to end-users, respond to market demands, and offer customer-specific solutions. We offer JIT shipments to meet the logistical demands of the sporting goods and fast-paced public safety markets – order by 3 p.m. and your in-stock item ships the same day via UPS Ground. We also offer low $250 minimum retail orders with free freight and custom imprinting with fast 7-day turnaround times. We seek continuous improvement, such as our recent NVLAP Accreditation to test and certify hearing protective devices (NVLAP Lab # 500090-0). Plus we test our products to meet or exceed standards including ANSI Z87.1+, VO Ballistics (0.15 caliber), CSA Z94.3-1992, ASTM1506, etc. All of our products are manufactured in ISO certified facilities.
GVO: How do you work at growing your customer base?
RI: We participate in over 15 Sporting Goods trade shows, including SHOT Show, NASGW, Distributor Shows, Buying Group Shows and more. We have a grass-roots marketing movement where we participate in shooting competitions and charity donations, such as our recent donation to the Ronald McDonald House for their Kids & Clays Foundation fundraiser. We engage in social media, email marketing, and some digital and print advertising. Again, we listen to our customers and end-users and develop new and innovative products that appeal to our growing customer base.
GVO: Tell us about new and exciting products for outdoor enthusiasts from Radians this year.
RI: Outdoor enthusiasts have gravitated toward our new retail line of premium Crossfire eyewear. This protective ANSI Z87 eyewear offers protection and style in a variety of sleek designs and lens choices. We have also introduced tactical products, such as performance gloves with floating knuckle guards and VO Ballistic eyewear, for law enforcement and military. We recently redesigned some of our Remington styles and just launched a line of cooling products called Arctic Skull that includes a cooling towel, headband, and head shade.