A RadioShack in Montana gained national attention last week after offering would-be satellite customers more bang for their buck. Literally. As part of a promotion for new customers, the store offered customers a coupon for a Pizza Hut gift card, a pistol, or a shotgun. That is until RadioShack stepped in yesterday to shut down the promotion.
The Ravalli Republic reported last week that customers who sign up for some Dish Network packages at RadioShack in Hamilton receive a coupon for a Hi-Point .380-caliber pistol or a .20-gauge shotgun and the required background check. Those not interested in a gun get a $50 Pizza Hut gift card.
Store owner Steve Strand says it took some haggling to get Dish Network to go along with the promotion, but it has tripled his business since last October.
The sign outside the business reads: "Protect yourself with Dish Network. Sign up now, get free gun."
RadioShack Corp. released a statement Friday that the independent dealer's offer does not follow the corporation's marketing practices and that it is in discussions with him. On Tuesday, it shut down Strand's promotion.
"This offer is not consistent with our recommended marketing practices for independent dealers," Eric Bruner, RadioShack's director of communications, wrote in an email to the Republic. "We are in discussions with the dealer to end the promotion."
And while Strand has taken down his free-gun sign for now, he's hoping to fight the decision. And he's reaching out for help.
"I want some legal representation," Strand said. "I think I'm within my legal rights as an independent dealer."
"How can a corporate company come down and beat up an independent like me?" he continued. "I thought we were in America. Free enterprise."
He's hoping an attorney hears about his case and takes it on.
"Why are they picking on us at the local level?"
The Associated Press contributed to this report.