Annual report pursuant to Section 13 and 15(d)

Nature Of Operations And Summary Of Significant Accounting Policies

Nature Of Operations And Summary Of Significant Accounting Policies
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2019
Nature Of Operations And Summary Of Significant Accounting Policies [Abstract]  
Nature Of Operations And Summary Of Significant Accounting Policies


The accompanying audited consolidated financial statements of Clarus Corporation and subsidiaries (which may be referred to as the “Company,” “Clarus,” “we,” “our” or “us”) have been prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (“U.S. GAAP”).

Nature of Business

Headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, Clarus, a company focused on the outdoor and consumer industries, is seeking opportunities to acquire and grow businesses that can generate attractive shareholder returns. The Company has net operating tax loss carryforwards which it is seeking to redeploy to maximize shareholder value. Clarus’ primary business is as a leading designer, developer, manufacturer and distributor of outdoor equipment and lifestyle products focused on the climb, ski, mountain, sport and skincare markets. The Company’s products are principally sold under the Black Diamond®, Sierra®, PIEPS® and SKINourishment® brand names through outdoor specialty and online retailers, distributors and original equipment manufacturers throughout the U.S. and internationally. 

Through our Black Diamond, PIEPS, and SKINourishment brands, we offer a broad range of products including: high-performance, activity-based apparel (such as shells, insulation, midlayers, pants and logowear); rock-climbing footwear and equipment (such as carabiners, protection devices, harnesses, belay devices, helmets, and ice-climbing gear); technical backpacks and high-end day packs; trekking poles; headlamps and lanterns; gloves and mittens; and skincare and other sport-enhancing products. We also offer advanced skis, ski poles, ski skins, and snow safety products, including avalanche airbag systems, avalanche transceivers, shovels, and probes.  Through our Sierra brand, we manufacture a wide range of high-performance bullets and ammunition for both rifles and pistols that are used for precision target shooting, hunting and military and law enforcement purposes.

Clarus Corporation, incorporated in Delaware in 1991, acquired Black Diamond Equipment, Ltd. (“Black Diamond Equipment”) in May 2010 and changed its name to Black Diamond, Inc. in January 2011. In October 2012, we acquired PIEPS Holding GmbH and its subsidiaries (collectively, “PIEPS”).

On August 14, 2017, the Company changed its name from Black Diamond, Inc. to Clarus Corporation and its stock ticker symbol from “BDE” to “CLAR” on the NASDAQ stock exchange. On August 21, 2017, the Company acquired Sierra Bullets, L.L.C. (“Sierra”). On November 6, 2018, the Company acquired the assets of SKINourishment, Inc. (“SKINourishment”).   

On May 7, 2018, the Company announced a “modified Dutch auction” tender offer for Clarus’ common stock, as well as the preferred share purchase rights associated with such shares (collectively, the “Shares”).  On July 11, 2018, the tender offer expired, following which the Company announced it would accept 417,237 Shares for purchase at a price of $8.00 per Share, for an aggregate cost of approximately $3,338, excluding fees and expenses.  The Company purchased shares of the Company’s common stock for $4,167 and $2,349 under the Company’s authorized stock repurchase program during the years ended December 31, 2019 and 2018, respectively.

On August 6, 2018, the Company announced that its Board of Directors approved the initiation of a quarterly cash dividend program of $0.025 per share of the Company’s common stock (the “Quarterly Cash Dividend”) or $0.10 per share on an annualized basis.  In 2019 and 2018, our total Quarterly Cash Dividends were $2,987 and $1,488, respectively.  On January 24, 2020, the Company announced that its Board of Directors approved the payment on February 14, 2020 of the Quarterly Cash Dividend of $0.025 to the record holders of shares of the Company’s common stock as of the close of business on February 3, 2020.

Use of Estimates

The preparation of financial statements in conformity with U.S. GAAP requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of assets and liabilities and disclosure of contingent liabilities at the date of the financial statements and the reported amounts of revenue and expenses during the reporting period.  The more significant estimates relate to purchase price allocation, excess or obsolete inventory, and valuation of deferred tax assets.  We base our estimates on historical experience and other assumptions that are believed to be reasonable under the circumstances.  Actual results could differ from these estimates.

Significant Accounting Policies

Principles of Consolidation

The consolidated financial statements include the accounts of Clarus Corporation and its wholly owned subsidiaries. All intercompany balances and transactions have been eliminated in consolidation.

Foreign Currency Transactions and Translation

The accounts of the Company’s international subsidiaries’ financial statements which have functional currencies other than the U.S. dollar are translated into U.S. dollars using the exchange rate at the balance sheet dates for assets and liabilities and average exchange rates for the periods for revenues, expenses, gains and losses.  Foreign currency translation adjustments are recorded as a separate component of accumulated other comprehensive (loss) income.  Foreign currency transaction gains and losses are included in other (expense) income in the consolidated statements of comprehensive income.

Cash Equivalents

The Company considers all highly liquid investments purchased with an original maturity of three months or less to be cash equivalents.  At December 31, 2019 and 2018, the Company did not hold any amounts that were considered to be cash equivalents.    

Accounts Receivable and Allowance for Doubtful Accounts

The Company records its trade receivables at sales value and establishes a non-specific allowance for estimated doubtful accounts based on historical experience of collectability.  In addition, specific allowances are established for customer accounts as known collection problems occur due to insolvency, disputes or other collection issues.  The amounts of these specific allowances are estimated by management based on the customer’s financial position, the age of the customer’s receivables and the reasons for any disputes.  The allowance for doubtful accounts is reduced by subsequent collections of the specific allowances or by any write-off of customer accounts that are deemed uncollectible.  The allowance for doubtful accounts was $494 and $392 at December 31, 2019 and 2018, respectively.  There were no significant write-offs of the Company’s accounts receivable during the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018, and 2017.


Inventories are stated at the lower of cost (using the first-in, first-out method “FIFO”) or net realizable value.  Elements of cost in the Company’s manufactured inventories generally include raw materials, direct labor, manufacturing overhead and freight in. The Company reviews its inventories for excess, close-out, or slow-moving items and makes provisions as necessary to properly reflect inventory values.

Property and Equipment

Property and equipment is stated at historical cost, less accumulated depreciation.  Depreciation is computed using the straight-line method over the estimated useful lives.  The principal estimated useful lives are: buildings, 30 years; building improvements, 20 years; computer hardware and software and machinery and equipment, 3-10 years; furniture and fixtures, 5 years.  Leasehold improvements are amortized over the lesser of the estimated useful life of the improvement or the life of the lease.  Equipment under finance leases are stated at the present value of minimum lease payments.  Major replacements, which extend the useful lives of equipment, are capitalized and depreciated over the remaining useful life.  Normal maintenance and repair items are expensed as incurred.  Property and equipment are reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances exist that indicate the carrying amount of an asset may not be recoverable. Long-lived assets located outside of the United States are not considered material.

Lease Accounting (Right-of-Use Assets)

Lease assets and lease liabilities are recognized at the commencement of an arrangement where it is determined at inception that a lease exists.  Lease assets represent the right to use an underlying asset for the lease term, and lease liabilities represent the obligation to make lease payments arising from the lease.  These assets and liabilities are initially recognized based on the present value of lease payments over the lease term calculated using our incremental borrowing rate.  Lease terms include options to extend or terminate the lease when it is reasonably certain that those options will be exercised.

Variable lease payments are generally expensed as incurred and include certain non-lease components, such as common area maintenance and other services provided by the lessor, and other charges such as utilities, insurance and property taxes included in the lease.  Leases with an initial term of 12 months or less are not recorded on the balance sheet, and the expense for these short-term leases and for operating leases is recognized on a straight-line basis over the lease term. Non-lease components are excluded from the right-of-use (“ROU”) asset and lease liability present value computations. The Company’s lease agreements do not contain any material residual value guarantees or material restrictive covenants.


Goodwill represents the excess of the purchase price over the fair market value of identifiable net assets of acquired companies.  Goodwill is not amortized, but rather is tested at the reporting unit level at least annually for impairment or more frequently if triggering events or changes in circumstances indicate impairment.  Initially, qualitative factors are considered to determine whether it is more likely than not that the fair value of a reporting unit is less than its carrying amount. Some of these qualitative factors may include macroeconomic conditions, industry and market considerations, a change in financial performance, entity-specific events, a sustained decrease in share price, and consideration of the difference between the fair value and carrying amount of a reporting unit as determined in the most recent quantitative assessment. If, through this qualitative assessment, the conclusion is made that it is more likely than not that a reporting unit's fair value is less than its carrying amount, a quantitative impairment analysis is performed.  The quantitative impairment analysis involves estimating the fair value of the reporting unit based upon an acceptable valuation method under Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) 820, Fair Value Measurement.  If the fair value of the reporting unit is less than its carrying amount, an impairment loss is recognized for the excess carrying amount over the fair value computation.  Based on the results of the Company’s annual impairment tests completed during the fourth quarter, the Company determined that goodwill was not impaired.  No impairment was recorded during the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018, and 2017.

Intangible Assets

Intangible assets represent other intangible assets and indefinite-lived intangible assets acquired. The Company’s other intangible assets, such as certain customer lists and relationships, product technologies, tradenames, trademarks and core technologies are amortized over their estimated useful lives. Other intangible assets are reviewed for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances exist that indicate the carrying amount of an asset may not be recoverable.

The Company’s indefinite lived intangible assets consists of certain tradenames and trademarks that provide Black Diamond Equipment, PIEPS and Sierra with the exclusive and perpetual rights to manufacture and sell their respective products.  Indefinite-lived intangible assets are not amortized; however, they are tested at least annually for impairment or more frequently if events or changes in circumstances exist that may indicate impairment. Initially, qualitative factors are considered to determine whether it is more likely than not that the fair value of an indefinite-lived intangible asset is less than its carrying amount. If, through this qualitative assessment, the conclusion is made that it is more likely than not that an indefinite-lived intangible asset's fair value is less than its carrying amount, or the Company elects to bypass the qualitative assessment, a quantitative impairment analysis is performed by comparing the indefinite-lived intangible asset's book value to its estimated fair value.  The fair value for indefinite-lived intangible assets is determined through an income approach using the relief-from-royalty method. The amount of any impairment is measured as the difference between the carrying amount and the fair value of the impaired asset. Based on the results of the Company’s annual impairment tests during the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018, and 2017, no impairment of indefinite-lived intangible assets was recorded.

Accounts Payable and Accrued Liabilities

Accounts payable and accrued liabilities include, but are not limited to, vendor trade payables, accrued payrolls, accrued interest, derivative instruments and other estimated expenses.  Accrued liabilities as of December 31, 2019 and 2018 were $9,559 and $7,446, respectively.

Derivative Financial Instruments

The Company uses derivative instruments to hedge currency rate movements on foreign currency denominated sales.  The Company enters into forward contracts, option contracts and non-deliverable forwards to manage the impact of foreign currency fluctuations on a portion of its forecasted foreign currency exposure.  These derivatives are carried at fair value on the Company’s consolidated balance sheets in prepaid and other current assets, other long-term assets, accounts payable and accrued liabilities, and other long-term liabilities.  Changes in fair value of the derivatives not designated as hedge instruments are included in the determination of net income.  For derivative contracts designated as hedge instruments, the effective portion of gains and losses resulting from changes in fair value of the instruments are included in accumulated other comprehensive (loss) income and reclassified to sales in the period the underlying hedged item is recognized in earnings. 

For all hedging relationships, the Company formally documents the hedging relationship and its risk-management objective and strategy for undertaking the hedge, the hedging instrument, the hedged transaction, the nature of the risk being hedged, how the hedging instrument’s effectiveness in offsetting the hedged risk will be assessed prospectively and retrospectively, and a description of the method used to measure ineffectiveness. The Company also formally assesses, both at the inception of the hedging relationship and on an ongoing basis, whether the derivatives that are used in hedging relationships are highly effective in offsetting changes in cash flows of hedged transactions.  The Company uses operating budgets and cash flow forecasts to estimate future foreign currency cash flow exposures and to determine the level and timing of derivative transactions intended to mitigate such exposures in accordance with its risk management policies. The Company discontinues hedge accounting prospectively when it determines that the derivative is no longer effective in offsetting cash flows attributable to the hedged risk, the derivative expires or is sold, terminated, or exercised, the cash flow hedge is dedesignated because a forecasted transaction is not probable of occurring, or management determines to remove the designation of the cash flow hedge.  The Company does not enter into derivative instruments for any purpose other than cash flow hedging. The Company does not speculate using derivative instruments.

Stock-Based Compensation

The Company records compensation expense for all share-based awards granted based on the fair value of the award at the time of the grant.  The fair value of each option award is estimated on the date of grant using the Black-Scholes option pricing model that uses assumptions and estimates that the Company believes are reasonable.  Stock-based compensation costs for stock awards and restricted stock awards is measured based on the closing market value of the Company’s common stock on the date of the grant.  For restricted stock awards subject to market conditions, the fair value of each restricted stock award has been estimated as of the date of grant using the Monte-Carlo pricing model.  The Company recognizes the cost of the share-based awards on a straight-line basis over the requisite service period of the award and recognizes forfeitures in the period they occur.  Stock options granted have contractual terms of up to ten years.  Upon exercise of stock options or vesting of restricted stock awards, the Company issues shares from those authorized and reserved for issuance.

Revenue Recognition

The Company recognizes revenue when a contract exists with a customer that specifies the goods and services to be provided at an agreed upon sales price and when the performance obligation is satisfied by transferring the goods or service to the customer. The performance obligation is considered complete when control transfers, which is determined when products are shipped or delivered to the customer depending on the terms of the contract.  Sales are made on normal and customary short-term credit terms or upon delivery of point of sale transactions. 

The Company enters into contractual arrangement with customers in the form of individual customer orders which specify the goods, quantity, pricing, and associated order terms.  The Company does not have long-term contracts that are satisfied over time.  Due to the nature of the contracts, no significant judgment exists in relation to the identification of the customer contract, satisfaction of the performance obligation, or transaction price.  The Company expenses incremental costs of obtaining a contract due to the short-term nature of the contracts.

The Company’s contract terms or historical business practices can give rise to variable consideration such as term discounts and customer cooperative payments.  We estimate the expected term discounts based on an analysis of historical experience and record cash discounts as a reduction to revenue.  Through cooperative advertising programs, the Company reimburses its wholesale customers for some of their costs of advertising the Company’s products.  The Company records such costs as a reduction of revenue, where the fair value cannot be reasonably estimated or where costs exceed the fair value of the services.

At the time of revenue recognition, we also provide for estimated sales returns and miscellaneous claims from customers as reductions to revenues. The estimates are based on historical rates of product returns and claims. The Company accrues for such estimated returns and claims with an estimated accrual and associated reduction of revenue.  Additionally, the Company records inventory that it expects to be returned as an other current asset, with a corresponding reduction of cost of goods sold. 

Sales commissions are expensed as incurred as they are paid within a year.  These costs are recorded in selling, general and administrative. Taxes collected from customers and remitted to government authorities are reported on the net basis and are excluded from sales.

Contract liabilities are recorded as a component of accounts payable and accrued liabilities when customers remit contractual cash payments in advance of us satisfying performance obligations which are satisfied at a future point of time. Contract liabilities totaled $141 and $90 at December 31, 2019 and 2018, respectively.  Contract liabilities are derecognized when the performance obligation is satisfied. Revenue recognized from satisfaction of performance obligations relating to the advanced payments during the year ended December 31, 2019 and 2018 totaled $90 and $554, respectively.

Cost of Sales

The expenses that are included in cost of sales include all direct product costs and costs related to shipping, certain warehousing or handling, duties and importation fees.  Product warranty costs and specific provisions for excess, close-out, or slow-moving inventory are also included in cost of sales.  Certain warehousing or handling costs which are not associated with the manufacturing of goods for sale are excluded from cost of sales.

Selling, General and Administrative Expense

Selling, general and administrative expense includes personnel-related costs, product development, selling, advertising, visual merchandise, depreciation and amortization, and other general operating expenses.  Advertising costs are expensed in the period incurred.  Total advertising expense, including cooperative advertising costs, were $4,588, $4,016, and $3,951 for the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018, and 2017, respectively.

Through cooperative advertising programs, the Company reimburses its wholesale customers for some of their costs of advertising the Company’s products based on various criteria, including the value of purchases from the Company and various advertising specifications. Cooperative advertising costs were $287,  $338, and $537 for the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018, and 2017, respectively, and were included in selling, general, and administrative expense because the Company receives an identifiable benefit in exchange for the cost, the advertising may be obtained from a party other than the customer, and the fair value of the advertising benefit can be reasonably estimated.

Product Warranty

Some of the Company’s products carry warranty provisions for defects in quality and workmanship.  Warranty repairs and replacements are recorded in cost of sales and a warranty liability is established at the time of sale to cover estimated costs based on the Company’s history of warranty repairs and replacements.  The Company recorded a liability for product warranties totaling $1,155 and $1,032 as of December 31, 2019 and 2018, respectively.  For the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018, and 2017, the Company experienced warranty claims on its products of $1,123,  $999, and $949, respectively.

Research and Development

Research and development costs are charged to expense as incurred, and are included in selling, general and administrative expenses in the accompanying consolidated statements of comprehensive income.  Total research and development costs were $10,575, $9,471, and $7,984 for the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018, and 2017, respectively.

Income Taxes

Income taxes are accounted for under the asset and liability method.  Income taxes are based on amounts of taxes payable or refundable in the current year and on expected future tax consequences of events that are recognized in the financial statements in different periods than they are recognized in tax returns.  As a result of timing of recognition and measurement differences between financial accounting standards and income tax laws, temporary differences arise between amounts of pre-tax financial statement income and taxable income and between reported amounts of assets and liabilities in the consolidated balance sheets and their respective tax bases.  Deferred income tax assets and liabilities reported in the consolidated balance sheets reflect estimated future tax effects attributable to these temporary differences and to net operating loss and net capital loss carryforwards, based on enacted tax rates expected to be in effect for years in which the differences are expected to be settled or realized. The Company has netted these deferred tax assets and deferred tax liabilities by jurisdiction.  Realization of deferred tax assets is dependent on future taxable income in specific jurisdictions.  Valuation allowances are used to reduce deferred tax assets to amounts considered more-likely-than-not to be realized.  U.S. deferred income taxes are not provided on undistributed income of foreign subsidiaries where such earnings are considered to be permanently invested.

The Company releases residual tax effects in accumulated other comprehensive income (loss) through continuing operations as the underlying asset matures or expires. The Company recognizes interest expense and penalties related to income tax matters in income tax (benefit) expense.

The Company recognizes tax benefits from uncertain tax positions only if it is more likely than not that the tax position will be sustained on examination by the taxing authorities based on the technical merits of the position. The tax benefits recognized in the financial statements from such a position are measured based on the largest benefit that has a greater than fifty percent likelihood of being realized upon ultimate resolution. The Company recognizes interest and penalties related to unrecognized tax benefits in income tax (benefit) expense. Unrecognized tax benefits that reduce a net operating loss, similar tax loss or tax credit carryforward, are presented as a reduction to deferred income taxes. 

Concentration of Credit Risk and Sales

Financial instruments that potentially subject the Company to concentration of credit risk consist principally of cash, accounts receivable, and aggregate unrealized gains (losses) on derivative contracts.  Risks associated with cash within the United States are mitigated by banking with federally insured, creditworthy institutions; however, there are balances with these institutions that are greater than the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation insurance limit.  The Company performs ongoing credit evaluations of its customers and maintains allowances for possible losses as considered necessary by management.

During the years ended December 31, 2019, 2018 and 2017, Recreational Equipment, Inc. (“REI”) accounted for approximately 14%, 12% and 14%, respectively, of the Company’s sales and is included in the Black Diamond segment.  No other single customer contributed more than 10% of our sales during those periods.  As of December 31, 2019 and 2018, REI accounted for approximately 14% and 15% of the Company’s accounts receivable, respectively.

Fair Value Measurements

The carrying value of cash, accounts receivable, accounts payable and accrued liabilities approximate their respective fair values due to the short-term nature and liquidity of these financial instruments.  Derivative financial instruments are recorded at fair value based on current market pricing models.  The Company estimates that, due to the variable interest rates reflecting current market rates, the fair value of its long-term debt obligations under its revolving credit facility approximates the carrying value at December 31, 2019 and 2018.

Segment Information

We operate our business structure within two segments. These segments are defined based on the internal financial reporting used by management.  Certain significant selling and general and administrative expenses are not allocated to the segments.  The accounting policies of the segments are the same as those described above

Recent Accounting Pronouncements

Accounting Pronouncements adopted During 2019

On January 1, 2019, the Company adopted ASC Topic 842, Leases, and elected the prospective method which was applied to all leases in effect as of January 1, 2019. Results for reporting periods beginning after January 1, 2019 are presented under the new guidance, while prior period amounts are not adjusted and continue to be presented in accordance with ASC Topic 840, Leases.

Under the new guidance, lessees are required to recognize a lease liability and a ROU asset for all leases with terms greater than 12 months. Leases are now classified as either finance or operating, with classification affecting the pattern of expense recognition in the income statement. Classification is based upon the underlying asset’s existence, nature and timing of ownership transfer in the related lease. Leases previously defined as operating leases record lease expense based upon the related ROU asset amortization and lease liability interest expense using the interest method over the life of the lease. Leases previously defined as capital leases are now classified as a finance lease with no material changes to the accounting methodology.

Upon adoption of ASC 842, the Company recorded the present value of ROU assets and related lease liabilities for the Company’s outstanding operating leases over the remaining lease term at January 1, 2019 totaling $1,516.

Certain of the leases contain extension options of one to five years. At January 1, 2019, the Company is uncertain as to whether the extension options will be executed. Accordingly, no extension options were considered in the present value computations of the ROU assets or related lease liabilities.

The Company elected the package of practical expedients in transition for leases that commenced prior to January 1, 2019, whereby these contracts were not reassessed or reclassified from their previous assessments as of December 31, 2018. We also elected certain other practical expedients in transition, including not reassessing existing land easements as lease contracts. The Company has also elected to not record the ROU assets and related liabilities for outstanding leases as of January 1, 2019 with a remaining term of 12 months or less. In these cases, the Company recognizes a lease payment as an expense on a straight-line basis. See Note 16. Leases for the financial position impact and additional disclosures.

On January 1, 2019, the Company early adopted Accounting Standards Update (“ASU”) 2017-04, Intangibles-Goodwill and Other (Topic 350): Simplifying the Test for Goodwill Impairment as permitted. The standard simplifies the accounting for goodwill impairment by requiring a goodwill impairment to be measured using a single step impairment model, whereby the impairment equals the difference between the carrying amount and the fair value of the specified reporting units in their entirety. This eliminates the second step of the current impairment model that requires companies to first estimate the fair value of all assets in a reporting unit and measure impairments based on those fair values and a residual measurement approach. It also specifies that any loss recognized should not exceed the total amount of goodwill allocated to that reporting unit. This ASU was adopted on a prospective basis with no impact to the Company’s consolidated financial statements.

On January 1, 2019, the Company adopted ASU 2017-12, Derivatives and Hedging (Topic 815): Targeted Improvements to Accounting for Hedging Activities. The ASU was adopted on a prospective basis. This standard enables entities to better portray the economics of their risk management activities in the financial statements and enhances the transparency and understandability of hedge results through improved disclosures. The adoption of this guidance did not impact the Company’s consolidated financial statements and related disclosures.

On January 1, 2019, the Company adopted ASU 2018-02, Income Statement – Reporting Comprehensive Income (Topic 220) Reclassification of Certain Tax Effects from Accumulated Other Comprehensive Income which allows for a reclassification from accumulated other comprehensive (loss) income to retained earnings for stranded tax effects resulting from the Tax Act. However, because the amendments only relate to the reclassification of the income tax effects of the Tax Act, the underlying guidance that requires that the effect of a change in tax laws or rates be included in income from continuing operations is not affected. Adoption of this ASU did not impact the beginning retained earnings on January 1, 2019 or the Company’s consolidated financial statements and related disclosures.