Business in a Business

This is a discussion on Business in a Business within the FFL Dealer Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; A friend of mine has an business selling fishing gear as well as feed and mowers. We've been talking about me putting guns and ammo ...

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Thread: Business in a Business

  1. #1
    New Member Array Joatman66's Avatar
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    Business in a Business

    A friend of mine has an business selling fishing gear as well as feed and mowers.

    We've been talking about me putting guns and ammo within his business for a while.

    I've been holding off submitting my FFL 01 while considering this.

    Advantages:

    - existing customer base
    - low entry cost (no rent, etc.)
    - lower sales tax than my other proposed location

    Disadvantages:

    ?

    Big question to a seasoned FFL holder is, will this setup be acceptable to ATF? Can employees handle sales and transfers in my absence?
    NONAME762 likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Joatman66 View Post
    A friend of mine has an business selling fishing gear as well as feed and mowers.

    We've been talking about me putting guns and ammo within his business for a while.

    I've been holding off submitting my FFL 01 while considering this.

    Advantages:

    - existing customer base
    - low entry cost (no rent, etc.)
    - lower sales tax than my other proposed location

    Disadvantages:

    ?

    Big question to a seasoned FFL holder is, will this setup be acceptable to ATF? Can employees handle sales and transfers in my absence?
    I am not an FFL.

    I have seen many set ups like this in Mi.
    Makes perfect sense to me.
    He has someone helping with rent and such plus the duality of business draws of shoppers.

    Cannot answer the question about others selling YOUR firearms in your absence.
    I would say most likely NOT.
    Even if they can, would you trust your livelihood, pocketbook(federal fines) and your freedom to mistakes that might be made in your absence?
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    I'm not an FFL holder but just look at Bass Pro! When I was reading your post the idea you have sounds just like Bass Pro with the exception of Lawn Mowers (they got boats).

    Go for it, sounds like a wonderful idea! Oh, and a local LEO here gave me his brothers card that is now an FFL holder. Seems it wasn't that difficult for this fellows brother to get one of those, I'd use him too because he charges less than the other places.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joatman66 View Post
    A friend of mine has an business selling fishing gear as well as feed and mowers.

    We've been talking about me putting guns and ammo within his business for a while.

    I've been holding off submitting my FFL 01 while considering this.

    Advantages:

    - existing customer base
    - low entry cost (no rent, etc.)
    - lower sales tax than my other proposed location

    Disadvantages:

    ?

    Big question to a seasoned FFL holder is, will this setup be acceptable to ATF? Can employees handle sales and transfers in my absence?
    Your idea is not at all unusual. It is more or less a strategic alliance. You might structure your space like a concession. Make a business plan and have a clear understanding with your partner so there is no misunderstanding down the road. Draft your plan in writing so both parties can agree and sign to all terms and conditions of the agreement.

    BATFE will have no problem providing your location is OK with local government authority, i.e. P&Z, CLO, etc.

    I would highly recommend that you also check with the building owner if your friend's business is in leased space. If the landlord is not in favor of firearms in the building, the idea cannot proceed.

    It would also be wise to check with the building owner's insurance company. Firearms present a level 3 risk for underwriters. How will you provide secure storage, alarm system, exedra? If you intend to share credit card services, check that his processor will accept firearms, many will not. You may need to provide your own merchant services provider and separate POS terminal/register for firearms.

    Any employee (or your perspective partner) if of legal age and who may legally possess a firearm, can sell firearms at the premises named on your FFL. Conversely, you can sell fishing gear, hunting camping and hiking gear and accessories that may actually yield higher margins than firearms.
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    I no longer have an FFL. Not to scare you off as this sounds like a hot idea to me but ATF is extremely persnickety regarding firearm transfer paperwork. In my AO a LGS will be surrendering their FFL in October after having been in business 65 years. The ATF audited them and some of their paperwork was sloppy. Giving up their FFL was the easiest way to get ATF off their back.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NONAME762 View Post
    I no longer have an FFL. Not to scare you off as this sounds like a hot idea to me but ATF is extremely persnickety regarding firearm transfer paperwork. In my AO a LGS will be surrendering their FFL in October after having been in business 65 years. The ATF audited them and some of their paperwork was sloppy. Giving up their FFL was the easiest way to get ATF off their back.
    I submit that, for federal regulators, the term "auditor" should be replaced with "commissar."
    "Yet this government never of itself furthered any enterprise, but by the alacrity with which it got out of the way... The character inherent in the American people has done all that has been accomplished; and it would have done somewhat more, if the government had not sometimes got in its way."

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    Quote Originally Posted by NONAME762 View Post
    I no longer have an FFL. Not to scare you off as this sounds like a hot idea to me but ATF is extremely persnickety regarding firearm transfer paperwork. In my AO a LGS will be surrendering their FFL in October after having been in business 65 years. The ATF audited them and some of their paperwork was sloppy. Giving up their FFL was the easiest way to get ATF off their back.
    True statement. BATFE does not make law they only enforce it (sometimes). Some regional Industry Operations field offices conduct business differently than others. Much of this has to do with staffing. Some offices will conduct audits at least every 4 years where others will not audit at all unless there is a suspected problem. You will likely be audited whenever there is a change of premises address or transfer or licensee name.

    I know of a case where the original licensee died. The spouse wanted to keep the business. That action triggered an audit. It was found that the original owner kept very sloppy records. The spouse was given a grace period of more than 30 days to clean up the books but failed to do so out of ignorance of the law. Some record keeping infractions may seem minor but are treated very seriously by BATFE because there is no other choice in the law. If it is not right it is wrong.

    NSSF regularly conducts seminars and webinars to help firearms businesses from getting into trouble should they be audited. I would recommend all licensee's attend these free programs if there is any doubt about record keeping or conduct of business. An FFL agrees to abide by all regulations as a licensee. It is also the responsibility of the FFL to train their employees properly since the FFL is accountable for employee infractions and actions.
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    You might run into other issues as well. Very few Merchant services will allow you to sell firearms using their service
    This one does McMillan Merchant Solutions

    This company might offer other levels of protection for you as a FFL Dealer as well
    FFLGuard | ffl ? Federal Firearms Licensees ? ffl dealer - ffl transfer ? FFL guard USA

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    Please stop spamming the forum with your ads for your employer.
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  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tubby45 View Post
    Please stop spamming the forum with your ads for your employer.
    Amen, glad you agree!
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  12. #11
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    All I have to offer is this: "an" goes before words that start with vowels; the letter "b" is not a vowel.

    hehehehehehehehehehe
    If I gave a crap about what you think about my guns.....it was early this morning and I already flushed it!

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