Since 1812 Westley Richards has seen a great deal of change in its business and the world in which it trades, and yet the company always has managed to keep its roots intact. When you buy a Westley Richards gun or rifle, quality and innovation come as part of the package—priorities that always have and, according to Westley’s owner and CEO Simon Clode, always will be key to the success of the business.
The latest development is a significant change to the firm’s representation in the US—a hugely important market for the gunmaker. Westley’s first agency in the US was opened in 1996 in Springfield, Missouri, and a decade later moved to Bozeman, Montana. Now it is relocating to the Gulf Coast of Florida. The North American arm of the business was established because, as Clode explains, he wanted someone from Westley Richards to answer customer calls. “I have always considered that the person representing us is more important than the physical location of our office,” Clode said. “Business in the US is generally conducted over the telephone, as customers are scattered far and wide. I don’t believe there is one city that is a better location than any other.
“Florida makes access for me and my team from the UK much simpler. Bozeman was a long journey from the UK and, whilst it was a great location, the traveling time required and the tricky winter weather I think hindered my investment in expansion and development.”
Duke “L.D.” McCaa II, who ran Gulf Breeze Firearms with his father, Duke McCaa, will head Westley’s new operation. The retail space and offices will adjoin the Gulf Breeze shop, in the Florida Panhandle. Gulf Breeze is a highly respected firearms dealer with a pedigree dating to 1986, and McCaa brings a focus on customer service that he built in his previous business.
Speaking about the move to Westley’s on a recent visit to the Birmingham factory, McCaa said, “First-class customer service is essential in this market. Because I’m a collector and hunter myself and have considerable international hunting experience, including Africa, I know what our customers are looking for when they visit us and how important it is for them to walk out the door satisfied with everything they experience while here. I want to make sure that our customers take home the guns that will work for them. I don’t just want to sell our customers a Westley Richards; I want to sell them the right Westley and give them the very best experience of this magnificent business.”
Added Clode: “I am very pleased that L.D. has accepted the position managing Westley Richards in the US. Over the past few years he has worked with us and demonstrated an enthusiasm and passion for ‘best’ guns in general and especially those made by Westley Richards. I am quite sure his commitment to excellent customer service and his knowledge of our guns and rifles and the hunting world in general will breathe new life into our business in the US.
“We are currently remodeling 3,000 square feet of space to provide a showroom and offices. The shop is being designed by the same team who did our factory showrooms and space in the UK. We will display a comprehensive range of our guns as well as used guns together with our leather and clothing. The shop will be ready in about three months and will open along with a fully revamped website. Other work to develop our brand includes the publication, later this year, of our new collector-quality magazine, The Explora, which is a really exciting adventure for the business.”
Westley’s new location is about a 30-minute drive from Pensacola International Airport.
For more information, contact Westley Richards Agency, 850-677-3688; westleyrichards.com.