Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Graham-based sporting goods company laying off 81 workers

A prominent North Carolina sporting goods company is laying off 81 employees by permanently closing its facility in Hamlet, according to a filing with the N.C. Department of Commerce.

Graham-based Big Rock Sports is consolidating its Hamlet facility operations with its warehouse in Charlotte. The Hamlet facility will close sometime in June or July, and the company said it will communicate an official close date with employees by Thursday.

The 300,000-square-foot distribution center in Hamlet opened in 2009. The warehouse distributes a full range of fishing, hunting, shooting, camping, electronics and boating supplies.

Hamlet is in Richmond County, which borders South Carolina. The N.C. Department of Commerce reported Richmond County’s unemployment rate as 4.8% in February, which puts the county in the top 25 of highest unemployment rates among state counties.

Richmond County’s unemployment rate is up from January but down from a year ago.

Big Rock Sports communicated its intent to close the Hamlet facility in October 2023. Employees do not have bumping rights, and Big Rock Sports is not part of a union.

Big Rock Sports Chair Adrian Holler, an avid angler, named Big Rock Sports after a series of underwater peaks and plateaus about 40 miles off the coast of Morehead City.

The company has three other North Carolina facilities — its home office in Graham, an 80,000-square-foot facility in Morehead City and a taxidermy operation in Raleigh.

It also has distribution centers in Minnesota and Nevada.

Cooper Metts
Cooper Metts
Cooper is a business reporting intern at Business North Carolina. He is working towards degrees in journalism and economics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He can be reached at

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