COVID-19 hits Indian shooting accessories manufacturer hard

These are not good times for Capapie Sports Equipments, which has built a solid reputation of manufacturing world-class accessories for rifle shooters.

India shooter Mehuli Ghosh gets her accessories customised from Capapie Sports Equipments.

India shooter Mehuli Ghosh gets her accessories customised from Capapie Sports Equipments.   -  Twitter

The shooters have figured a way out to keep themselves occupied during the lockdown but the fortunes of an Indian company that exports shooting accessories to over 70 countries have nose-dived.

These are not good times for Nilesh Rane, founder of Capapie Sports Equipments, who has built a solid reputation of manufacturing world-class jackets, trousers, shoes and gloves for rifle shooters over the years.

Rane, a former national-level rifle shooter himself, prefers to remain optimistic even in the worst of times and is confident that the company will wriggle out of it as things get better with time.

“Revenue has taken a hit,” he told PTI when asked about his business that was flourishing until the novel coronavirus outbreak.

With the world in lockdown and shipments restricted, he is not able to export his produce to the countries whose top shooters normally rely on him.

“There is a total stop on everything. Of course production and export has taken a hit due to the bad situation in Europe.

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“We are the leading manufacturing brand in the world now, when it comes to jacket, trouser, gloves and shoes. Top shooters take from us,” he said.

All tournaments, big and small, have been either postponed or cancelled in recent times due to the fast-spreading novel coronavirus that has so far claimed over 1,60,000 lives while infecting more than 20 lakh people across the world.

The International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) has recently cancelled all its scheduled tournaments this year, including the World Cups.

However, a few of the shooters took part in an online competition recently. The championship, first of its kind, was held earlier this week.

Rane believes the virtual event gave them some visibility, with some of the shooters wearing the jackets and trousers manufactured by Capapie.

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“That online event was something positive, a break from negativity in these times. This online event is a good initiative and we really feel good when shooters wear our dresses,” he said.

“Shooting is a niche sport, and not like, say, cricket, so it more difficult when we are talking about visibility.”

Rane, who is also sponsoring a couple of refugee shooters’ preparations for the Tokyo Olympics, feels the postponement of the Games by a year may help them provide the shooters with even better material.

“The Olympics postponement will give us more time to cater to the shooters’ requirements. We have given them customised shoes, trousers and jackets."

“So, we are looking at it also in a positive way. We had gone international some years ago and we try to give them the best as per their requirements also.”

Besides a majority of top rifle shooters across the world, Capapie supplies accessories to the likes of top Indian rifle shooters such as Divyansh Singh Panwar, Anjum Moudgil, Elavenil Valarivan, Mehuli Ghosh and Deepak Kumar among others.

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