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UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549 
FORM 10-K
(Mark One)
ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the fiscal year ended January 3, 2020
OR
TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the transition period from  to  
Commission File Number: 001-36040

foxf-20200103_g1.gif
Fox Factory Holding Corp.
(Exact Name of Registrant as Specified in its Charter)

Delaware26-1647258
(State or Other Jurisdiction of Incorporation or Organization)(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)
6634 Hwy 53, Braselton GA 30517
(Address of Principal Executive Offices) (Zip Code)
(831) 274-6500
(Registrant’s Telephone Number, Including Area Code)

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Title of Each ClassTrading Symbol(s)Name of Each Exchange on Which Registered
Common Stock, par value $0.001 per shareFOXFThe NASDAQ Stock Market LLC
(NASDAQ Global Select Market)

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
None


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Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes  ý No  ¨
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Act. Yes  ¨ No  ý
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant: (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.  Yes  ý    No  ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). Yes ý   No  ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company, or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of "large accelerated filer," "accelerated filer," "smaller reporting company," and "emerging growth company" in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filerAccelerated filer
Non-accelerated filerSmaller reporting company
Emerging growth company
If any emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act.  ¨
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act). Yes      No  ý
Based upon the closing price of the registrant's common stock on the NASDAQ Global Select Market on June 28, 2019 (the last business day of the registrant’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter), the approximate aggregate market value of the common stock held by non-affiliates of the registrant was approximately $1,991,818,000. As of February 28, 2020, there were 38,602,699 shares of the registrant’s common stock outstanding.
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
Portions of the registrant’s Definitive Proxy Statement for the 2020 Annual Meeting of Stockholders to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission pursuant to Regulation 14A not later than 120 days after the end of the fiscal year covered by this Annual Report on Form 10-K are incorporated by reference in Part III, Items 10-14 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K.




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SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This Annual Report on Form 10-K includes forward-looking statements, which are subject to the “safe harbor” created by Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"), and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the "Exchange Act"). We may make forward-looking statements in our U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") filings, press releases, news articles, earnings presentations and when we are speaking on behalf of the Company. Forward-looking statements generally relate to future events or our future financial or operating performance that involve substantial risks and uncertainties. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements because they contain words such as “may,” “might,” “will,” “would,” “should,” “expect,” “plan,” “anticipate,” “could,” “intend,” “target,” “project,” “contemplate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “predict,” “likely,” “potential” or “continue” or the negative of these words or other similar terms or expressions that concern our expectations, strategy, plans or intentions. Forward-looking statements contained in this Annual Report on Form 10-K are subject to numerous risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to risks related to:
our ability to develop new and innovative products in our current end-markets;
our ability to leverage our technologies and brand to expand into new categories and end-markets;
our ability to increase our aftermarket penetration;
our ability to accelerate international growth;
our exposure to exchange rate fluctuations;
the loss of key customers;
our ability to improve operating and supply chain efficiencies;
our ability to enforce our intellectual property rights;
our future financial performance, including our sales, cost of sales, gross profit or gross margins, operating expenses, ability to generate positive cash flow and ability to maintain our profitability;
our ability to maintain our premium brand image and high-performance products;
our ability to maintain relationships with the professional athletes and race teams we sponsor;
our ability to selectively add additional dealers and distributors in certain geographic markets;
the growth of the markets in which we compete, our expectations regarding consumer preferences and our ability to respond to changes in consumer preferences;
changes in demand for performance-defining products;
the loss of key personnel, management and skilled engineers;
our ability to successfully identify, evaluate and manage potential or completed acquisitions and to benefit from such acquisitions;
the outcome of pending litigation;
future disruptions in the operations of our manufacturing facilities;
our ability to adapt our business model to mitigate the impact of certain changes in tax laws including those enacted in the U.S. in December 2017;
changes in the relative proportion of profit earned in the numerous jurisdictions in which we do business and in tax legislation, case law and other authoritative guidance in those jurisdictions;
products recalls and product liability claims; and
future economic or market conditions.


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You should not rely upon forward-looking statements as predictions of future events. We have based the forward-looking statements contained in this Annual Report on Form 10-K primarily on our current expectations and projections about future events and trends that we believe may affect our business, financial condition, results of operations, and prospects and the outcomes of any of the events described in any forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties, and other factors. In addition to the risks, uncertainties and other factors discussed above and elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K, the risks, uncertainties and other factors expressed or implied discussed in Item 1A. "Risk Factors" of this Annual Report on Form 10-K could cause or contribute to actual results differing materially from those set forth in any forward-looking statement. Moreover, we operate in a very competitive and challenging environment. New risks and uncertainties emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for us to predict all risks and uncertainties that could have an impact on the forward-looking statements contained in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. We cannot assure you that the results, events, and circumstances reflected in the forward-looking statements will be achieved or occur. Actual results, events, or circumstances could differ materially from those contemplated by, set forth in, or underlying any forward-looking statements.
For all of these forward-looking statements, we claim the protection of the safe harbor for forward-looking statements in Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 21E of the Exchange Act.
The forward-looking statements made in this Annual Report on Form 10-K relate only to events as of the date on which the statements are made. We undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statements made in this Annual Report on Form 10-K to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this Annual Report on Form 10-K or to reflect new information or the occurrence of unanticipated events, except as required by law. We may not actually achieve the plans, intentions, or expectations disclosed in our forward-looking statements and you should not place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements. Our forward-looking statements do not reflect the potential impact of any future acquisitions, mergers, dispositions, joint ventures or investments we may make.




Fox Factory Holding Corp.
FORM 10-K
Table of Contents
Page 
PART I.
Item 1Business
Item 1ARisk Factors
Item 1BUnresolved Staff Comments
Item 2Properties
Item 3Legal Proceedings
Item 4Mine Safety Disclosures
PART II.
Item 5Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
Item 6Selected Financial Data
Item 7Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations
Item 7AQuantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
Item 8Financial Statements and Supplementary Data
Item 9Changes in and Disagreements with Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure
Item 9AControls and Procedures
Item 9BOther Information
PART III. 
Item 10Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance
Item 11Executive Compensation
Item 12Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters
Item 13Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence
Item 14Principal Accounting Fees and Services
PART IV.
Item 15Exhibits, Financial Statement Schedules
Item 16Form 10-K Summary
Signatures
Financial Statements
Management’s Report on Internal Control Over Financial Reporting  
Reports of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm
Consolidated Balance Sheets as of January 3, 2020 and December 28, 2018  
Consolidated Statements of Income for the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017  
Consolidated Statements of Comprehensive Income for the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017  
Consolidated Statements of Stockholders' Equity for the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017  
Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows for the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017  
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements



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PART I
ITEM 1. BUSINESS
Our company, Fox Factory Holding Corp., designs, engineers, manufactures and markets performance-defining products and systems for customers worldwide. Fox Factory Holding Corp. is the holding company of Fox Factory, Inc. As used herein, "Fox Factory," "FOX," the "Company," "we," "our," and similar terms refer to Fox Factory Holding Corp. and its subsidiaries, unless the context indicates otherwise. Our premium brand, performance-defining products and systems are used primarily on bicycles ("bikes"), side-by-side vehicles ("Side-by-Sides"), on-road vehicles with and without off-road capabilities, off-road vehicles and trucks, all-terrain vehicles ("ATVs"), snowmobiles, specialty vehicles and applications, motorcycles and commercial trucks. Some of our products are specifically designed and marketed to some of the leading cycling and powered vehicle original equipment manufacturers ("OEMs"), while others are distributed to consumers through a global network of dealers and distributors.
Fox Factory, Inc., our operating subsidiary, was incorporated in California in 1978. Fox Factory Holding Corp. was incorporated in Delaware on December 28, 2007. In October 2018, we announced the relocation of our corporate headquarters from Scotts Valley, California to Braselton, Georgia, which was effective on December 31, 2018.
In August 2013, we completed an initial public offering ("IPO") of our common stock. Our common stock is traded on the NASDAQ Global Select Market (the "NASDAQ") under the symbol "FOXF."
Description of our business
We are a designer, manufacturer and marketer of performance-defining products and systems used primarily on bikes, Side-by-Sides, on-road vehicles with and without off-road capabilities, off-road vehicles and trucks, ATVs, snowmobiles, specialty vehicles and applications, motorcycles, and commercial trucks. We believe our products offer innovative design, performance, durability and reliability. Our brand is associated with high-performance and technologically advanced products, by which we generally mean products that provide users with improved control and comfort while riding over rough terrain in varied environments, or providing improved control and responsiveness for on-road only vehicles. We believe that the performance of our products has been demonstrated by, and our brand benefits from, the success of professional athletes who use our products in elite competitive events, such as the Union Cycliste Internationale Mountain Bike World Cup and the X Games. We believe the exposure our products receive when used by successful professional athletes positively influences the purchasing habits of enthusiasts and other consumers seeking high-performance products. We believe that our strategic focus on the performance and racing segments in our markets influences many aspiring and enthusiast consumers who we believe seek to emulate the performance of professional and other elite athletes. We believe our products are generally sold at premium prices, which to us means manufacturer suggested retail sale prices that are generally in the upper quartile of their respective product categories.
We design our products for, and market our products to, some of the world’s leading cycling and automotive OEMs and to consumers through the aftermarket channel. Many of our OEM customers, including Giant, Pivot, Santa Cruz Bicycles, Specialized, Scott, Trek, Yeti Cycles and YT in Specialty Sports and BRP, Ford, Honda, Jeep, Kawasaki, Polaris, Toyota, Triumph, and Yamaha in Powered Vehicles, are among the market leaders in their respective product categories, and help shape, as well as respond to, consumer trends in their respective categories. We believe that OEMs often prominently display and incorporate our products to improve the marketability and consumer demand for their performance models, which reinforces our brand image. In addition, consumers select our products in the aftermarket channel where we market through a global network of dealers and distributors.
Industry
We participate in large global markets for bikes and powered vehicles used by recreational and professional users. Today, our products for bicycles are primarily for mountain bikes, road bikes, and e-bikes. Our products for powered vehicles are used primarily on Side-by-Sides, on-road vehicles with and without off-road capabilities, off-road vehicles and trucks, ATVs, snowmobiles, specialty vehicles and applications, motorcycles, and commercial trucks.
We focus on premium-priced products within each of these categories, which we consider to be the high-end segment because of their higher retail sale prices, where we believe consumers prefer well-designed, performance-oriented equipment. We believe that performance-defining products, which include suspension systems, as well as wheels, cranks, and other components, are critical to the performance of the bikes and powered vehicles in the product categories in which we focus and that technical features, component performance, product design, durability, reliability, and brand recognition strongly influence consumer-purchasing decisions.
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We believe the high-end segments in which we participate are well positioned for growth due to several factors, including:
increasing consumer appetite for performance-defining products;
increasing average retail sales prices, which we believe are driven by differentiated and feature-rich products with advanced technologies;
continuing product cycle innovation, which we have observed often motivates consumers to upgrade and purchase new products for enhanced performance; and
increased sales opportunities for high-end bikes and powered vehicles in international markets.
As vehicles in our end-markets evolve and grow more capable, performance-defining products and systems have become, and we believe will continue to become, increasingly more important for improved performance and control. Additionally, we believe there are opportunities to continue to leverage our technical know-how of suspension products to provide solutions beyond our current applications and end-markets.
Our competitive strengths
Broad offering of performance-defining products across multiple consumer markets
Our performance-defining products enhance vehicle performance across multiple consumer markets. Through the use of adjustable suspension, position sensitive damping, multiple air spring technologies, lightweight and rigid materials, and other technologies and methods, our products improve the performance and control of the vehicles used by our consumers. We believe our reputation for performance-defining products is reinforced by the successful finishes in world class competitive events by athletes incorporating our products in their vehicles.
Premium brand with strong consumer loyalty
We believe that we have developed a reputation for performance-defining products and that we own and license established trademarks, such as FOX®, FOX RACING SHOX®, and RACE FACE® which are perceived as premium brands. As such, our performance-defining products are generally sold at premium prices. We take great effort to maintain our brands in the eyes of consumers. For instance, our FOX® logo is prominently displayed on our FOX® branded products used on bikes and powered vehicles sold by our OEM customers, which helps further reinforce our brand image. We believe that our brands have achieved strong loyalty from our consumers. To support our brands, we introduce new products that we believe feature innovative technologies designed to improve vehicle performance and enhance our brand loyalty with consumers.
Track record of innovation and new product introductions
Innovation, including new product development, is a key component of our growth strategy. Due to our experience in suspension engineering and design in multiple markets and with a variety of vehicles, solutions we develop for use in one market can ultimately be deployed across multiple markets. For example, we believe that our success in the high-end ATV category led to the widespread adoption of our suspension technology in the Side-by-Side market. Our innovative product development and speed to market are supported by:
our racing culture, including on-site technical race support of professional athletes, which provides us with unique real-time insights as to the evolving performance-defining product needs of those participating in challenging world-class events and is an integral part of our research and development efforts;
ongoing research and development through a team of full-time engineers and numerous other technicians and employees who spend at least part of their time testing and using our products and helping develop engineering-based solutions to enhance our product offerings;
feedback from professional athletes, race teams, enthusiasts and other consumers who use our products;
strategic and collaborative relationships with OEM customers, which furthers our ability to extend technologies and applications across end-markets; and
our integrated manufacturing facilities and performance testing centers, which allow us to quickly move from concept to product.
 Over the past several years, we have developed multiple new products, such as:
Live Valve, our proprietary semi-active, electronic suspension that processes data from multiple vehicle sensors to adjust the suspension virtually instantaneously to the demands of changing terrain. This technology is currently in use on Side-by-Sides, off-road capable, on-road trucks, and mountain bikes;
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32, 34 and 36 Factory Series FLOAT FIT4, which reduces overall fork weight, provides external adjustability with our fourth-generation FOX Isolated Technology (FIT) closed-cartridge damper, and includes the self-adjusting negative chamber air spring for quieter operation and ease of adjustment; 
The GRIP2 fork damper, which is our next-evolution sealed cartridge FIT system, our highest performing gravity-focused damper. GRIP2 shares its roots with the original GRIP architecture, but has been enhanced with all-new technology: four-way adjustability, VVC high-speed rebound circuit, high-performance mid-valve, and overall friction-reducing treatments;
X2 technology used in our Factory Series FLOAT and DH rear shocks, which allows the rider to independently tune high- and low-speed compression and high- and low-speed rebound;
DPX2 rear shock technology that combines the character of our DPS damping and X2 damping circuits to provide a lightweight trail-tuned adjustable shock;
Rhythm series fork products developed to address a lower price point offering without compromising proven FOX performance;
PODIUM Internal Bypass, introduced into the Side-by-Side market, which through its internal bypass technology, allows the vehicle to be plush on small bumps and deliver excellent chassis control while providing progressive bottoming resistance with each increment of travel used;
X2 technology used in our 2.5 PODIUM shocks for side-by-sides that feature high- and low-speed rebound adjustment, high- and low-speed compression adjustment, and a dual-rate spring for the rear shocks to allow drivers to tune for many different terrain types and driving styles;
Race Face Vault Hub, a new 120-point high-engagement mountain bike hubset featuring tool-free end caps that simplify conversion among all major axle standards and is approved for e-bike applications;
Race Face Next R31 Carbon Wheels featuring a single spoke length throughout and an offset rim design for improved spoke balance and strength; and
Easton EC90 SL Crankset with Cinch Power Meter spindle, a versatile road bike crankset that allows quick conversion between 1x and 2x road and gravel chainring configurations. The Cinch Power Meter spindle, through a one-time connection to a smart phone, automatically works with ride-recording and power-measurement applications.
Strategic brand for OEMs, dealers and distributors
Through our strategic relationships, we are often sought out by our OEM customers and work closely with them to develop and design new products and product enhancements. We believe our collaborative approach and product development processes strengthen our relationships with our OEM customers. We believe consumers value our branded products when selecting performance bikes and powered vehicles, and as a result, OEMs purchase and incorporate our products in their bikes and powered vehicles in order to increase the sales of their premium-priced products. In addition, we believe the inclusion of our products on high-end bikes and powered vehicles reinforces our premium brand image which helps to drive our sales in the aftermarket channel where dealers and distributors sell our products to consumers.
Experienced management team
We have an experienced senior management team led by Michael C. Dennison, our Chief Executive Officer. Many members of our management team and many of our employees are avid users of our products, which further extends their knowledge of, and expertise in, our products and end-markets. We are able to attract and retain highly trained and specialized employees who enhance our Company culture and serve as strong brand advocates.
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Our strategy
Our goal is to expand our leadership position as a designer, manufacturer and marketer of performance-defining products designed to enhance ride dynamics and performance. We intend to focus on the following key strategies in pursuit of this goal:
Continue to develop new and innovative products in current end-markets
We intend to continue to develop and introduce new and innovative products in our current end-markets to improve ride dynamics and performance for our consumers. For example, our patented position-sensitive damping systems provide terrain optimized ride characteristics across many of our product lines. We believe that performance and control are important to our consumer base, and that our frequent introduction of products with innovative and improved technologies increases both OEM and aftermarket demand as consumers seek out products for their vehicles that can deliver these characteristics. We also believe evolving market trends, such as changing bike wheel and tire sizes and increasing adoption rates of off-road capable, on-road trucks should increase demand for vehicles in our end-markets, which, in turn, should increase demand for our suspension products.
Leverage technology and brand to expand into new categories and end-markets
We believe we have developed a reputation as a leader in performance-defining products and that our reputation combined with our ability to improve vehicle performance by incorporating performance suspension products and other components results in us frequently being approached by OEM product development teams, athletes and others looking to improve the performance of their vehicles, including in end-markets in which we have not previously offered products. We believe our performance-defining technologies have applications in end-markets in which we do not currently participate in a meaningful way, and we intend to selectively develop products for and forge relationships with customers in additional markets. These markets may include military, recreational vehicles (RVs), and "performance street" cars.
Opportunistically expand our business platform through acquisitions
Over the past several years, we have completed acquisitions that we believe enhance our business and strategically expand our product offerings. In 2014, we acquired the business of Sport Truck, a full-service distributor of aftermarket suspension solutions. Sport Truck designs, markets, and distributes lift kit solutions primarily through its brands, BDS Suspension and Zone Offroad Products. In 2014, we acquired the businesses of Race Face/Easton. Known for its unique carbon technology, Race Face/Easton designs, manufactures, and distributes performance bike wheels and other performance cycling components including cranks, bars, stems, and seat posts, globally to OEMs and the aftermarket. In 2015, we continued to expand our opportunities through the acquisition of certain assets of Marzocchi’s bike product lines. In November 2017, through our subsidiary FF U.S. Holding Corp. d/b/a Tuscany Motor Company ("Tuscany") we acquired the majority interest in the business of Flagship, Inc., a designer, manufacturer and distributor of premium aftermarket powered vehicle performance packages and personal-use specialty vehicles based on OEM vehicle chassis. In May 2019, we acquired substantially all of the assets of Air Ride Technologies, Inc., d/b/a Ridetech, a manufacturer of suspension systems that enhance the handling and ride quality of muscle cars, trucks, sports cars and hot rods. The Company believes that this acquisition aligns with its focus on improving vehicle performance and provides it with an opportunity to enter the street performance market.
We also believe that our passionate customer base has a desire for other types of performance products beyond those that attach to a vehicle or bike. We believe there is opportunity to expand our total available market by broadening our acquisition focus to include a more diverse range of performance products that add to or increase our customers' enjoyment of their activities of choice.
Our business development group is responsible for identifying and assessing inorganic and organic potential growth opportunities of our ride dynamics platform and other specialty sports technology platforms. Specifically, our business development group: (i) identifies and assesses potential acquisition opportunities; (ii) aids the business in analyzing growth alternatives; and (iii) manages critical projects and programs as determined by senior management.
Increase our aftermarket penetration
We currently have a broad aftermarket distribution network of thousands of retail dealers and distributors worldwide. We intend to further penetrate the aftermarket channel by selectively adding dealers and distributors in certain geographic markets, increasing our internal sales force and strategically expanding aftermarket-specific products and services to existing vehicle platforms.
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Accelerate international growth
While a significant percentage of our current sales are to OEMs and dealers and distributors located outside the United States, we believe international expansion represents a significant opportunity for us and we have, and intend to continue to, selectively increase infrastructure investments and focus on identified geographic regions. We believe that rising consumer discretionary income in a number of developing markets and increasing consumer preferences for premium, performance bikes and powered vehicles should contribute to increasing demand for our products. In addition, we believe increasing international viewership of racing and extreme sports and other outdoor events, such as the X Games, is contributing to the growth of international participation in activities in which our products are used. We intend to leverage the recognition of our brands to capitalize on these trends by globally increasing our sales to both OEMs and dealers and distributors, particularly in markets where we perceive significant opportunities.
Improve operating and supply chain efficiencies
During 2017, we completed the process of moving all bike suspension component manufacturing to our facility in Taichung, Taiwan. In connection with this move, we are using, and expect to continue to use, suppliers that are located closer to our Taichung, Taiwan facility for a number of materials and components. This transition has shortened production lead times to our bike OEM customers, improved supply chain efficiencies, and reduced manufacturing costs. With the transition of all of our bike suspension component manufacturing to Taichung, Taiwan, we have converted the Watsonville, California manufacturing facility to exclusively manufacture powered vehicle suspension products. And during 2019, we also completed the process of relocating our Specialty Sports Group’s U.S. aftermarket bike products distribution, sales, and service operations to Reno, Nevada.
In addition, we are currently constructing an approximately 336,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility in Hall County, Georgia to diversify our manufacturing platform and provide additional long-term capacity to support growth in our Powered Vehicles Group.
Seasonality
Certain portions of our business are seasonal; we believe this seasonality is due to the delivery of new products. Generally, our quarterly sales have been the lowest in the first quarter and highest in the third quarter of the year. For example, our sales in our first and third quarters of 2019 represented 22% and 28% of our total sales for the year, respectively.
Competition
The markets for performance-defining products, including suspension components, wheels, and cranks, are highly competitive. We compete with other companies that produce products for sale to OEMs, dealers and distributors, as well as with OEMs that produce their own line of products for their own use. Some of our competitors may have greater financial, research and development or marketing resources than we do. Competition in the high-end segment of the performance-defining market revolves around technical features, performance, product design, innovation, reliability and durability, brand, time to market, customer service and reliable order execution. While the pricing of competing products is always a factor, we believe the performance of our products helps justify our premium pricing. Within our markets, we compete with several large companies and numerous small companies that provide branded and unbranded products across many of our product lines. These competitors can be divided into the following categories:
Powered Vehicles
Within the market for powered vehicle suspension components, we compete with several companies in different submarkets. In the snowmobile market we compete with KYB (Kayaba Industry Co., Ltd.), Öhlins Racing AB (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tenneco), Walker Evans Racing, Works Performance Products, Inc., and Penske Racing Shocks / Custom Axis, Inc. In the ATV and Side-by-Side markets, outside of vertically-integrated OEMs, we compete with ZF Sachs (ZF Friedrichshafen AG), Polaris, and Walker Evans Racing for OEM business and Elka Suspension Inc., Öhlins Racing AB, Works Performance Products, and Penske Racing Shocks / Custom Axis, Inc. for aftermarket business.
Within the market for off-road and specialty vehicle suspension components, we compete with ThyssenKrupp Bilstein Suspension GmbH (commonly known as Bilstein), and King Shock Technology, Inc. (commonly known as King Shocks), Icon Vehicle Dynamics, Sway-A-Way, Pro Comp USA Suspension, and Rancho (Tenneco). In the market for suspension systems, or lift kits, we compete with TransAmerican Wholesale/Pro Comp USA, Rough Country Suspension Systems, TeraFlex, ReadyLIFT Suspension, Tuff Country EZ-Ride Suspension, and Rusty’s Off-Road. In the market for up-fitted vehicles, we compete with SCA Performance, Rocky Ridge Trucks, and DSI Custom Vehicles.
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Specialty Sports
Within the market for bike suspension components, we compete with several companies that manufacture front and rear suspension products, including RockShox (a subsidiary of SRAM Corp.), X-Fusion Shox (a wholly owned subsidiary of A-Pro), Manitou (a subsidiary of HB Performance Systems), SR Suntour, DT Swiss (a subsidiary of Vereinigte Drahtwerke AG), Cane Creek Cycling, DVO Suspension, Bos-Mountain Bike Suspensions, and Öhlins Racing AB. In the market for other bike components, we compete with SRAM, Truvativ and Zipp (all subsidiaries of SRAM Corp.), DT Swiss (a subsidiary of Vereinigte Drahtwerke AG), Mavic (a subsidiary of Amer Sports Corp.), and Shimano.
Our products
We design and manufacture performance-defining products, of which a significant portion is suspension products. These suspension products dissipate the energy and force generated by bikes and powered vehicles while they are in motion. Suspension products allow wheels or skis (in the case of snowmobiles) to move up and down to absorb bumps and shocks while maintaining contact with the ground for better control. Our products use adjustable suspension, position-sensitive damping, electronically controllable damping, multiple air spring technologies, low weight and structural rigidity, all of which improve user control for greater performance.
We use high-grade materials in our products and have developed a number of sophisticated assembly processes to maintain quality across all product lines. Our suspension products are assembled according to precise specifications throughout the assembly process to create consistently high-performance levels and customer satisfaction.
Powered Vehicles
In our powered vehicle product categories, we offer premium products under the FOX, BDS Suspension, Zone Offroad, JKS Manufacturing, RT Pro UTV, 4x4 Posi-Lok, Tuscany, and Ridetech brands for Side-by-Sides, on-road vehicles with and without off-road capabilities, off-road vehicles and trucks, ATVs, snowmobiles, specialty vehicles and applications, motorcycles, and commercial trucks. In each of the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017, approximately 60%, 54% and 48%, respectively, of our sales were attributable to sales of powered vehicles related products.
Products for these vehicles are designed for use on roads, for trail riding, in racing, and to help provide performance and comfort. Our products have also been used on limited quantities of off-road military vehicles and other small-scale select military applications. Our aftermarket truck suspension component products in the powered vehicles category range from two-inch aluminum bolt-on shocks to our patented position sensitive internal bypass shocks. We also offer lift kits and components with our shock products and aftermarket accessory packages for use in trucks. We up-fit trucks to be off-road capable, on-road vehicles with components and products such as lift kits, shock products, superchargers, interior accessories, wheel, tires, lighting, and body enhancements. In addition, we manufacture suspension systems that enhance the handling and ride quality of muscle cars, trucks, sports cars and hot rods.
Specialty Sports
As a result of our acquisitions in recent years, our bike product offerings have expanded and are used on a wide range of performance mountain bikes and road bikes under the FOX, Race Face, Easton Cycling and Marzocchi brands. Given this wide range of bike products and brands, as well as the potential to expand our offerings to include other types of performance-defining products, we have changed the name of the group from Bike Division to Specialty Sports Group. In each of the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017, approximately 40%, 46% and 52%, respectively, of our sales were attributable to sales of bike-related products. Primarily for the mountain bike market, we offer mid-end and high-end front fork and rear suspension products designed for cross-country, trail, all-mountain, free-ride and downhill riding. Our mountain bike suspension products are sold in five series and under the Marzocchi brand: (i) our Marzocchi BOMBER series, designed for a rider who values ease of use over adjustability; (ii) our FOX Rhythm series, designed to provide FOX performance at the entry price point of the high-end mountain bikes segment; (iii) our FOX Performance series, designed for demanding enthusiasts; (iv) our FOX Performance Elite series, designed for experienced and expert riders; and (v) our FOX Factory series, designed for maximum performance at a professional level.
We also offer mountain and road bike wheels and other performance-defining cycling components under the Race Face and Easton Cycling brands including cranks, chainrings, pedals, bars, stems, and seat posts.
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Research and development
Research and development is at the core of our product innovation and market leadership strategy. We have a growing team of engineers and technicians focused on designing innovative products and developing engineering-based solutions to enhance our product offerings. In addition, a large number of our other employees, many of whom use our products in their recreational activities, contribute to our research and development and product innovation initiatives. Their involvement in the development of new products ranges from participating in initial brainstorming sessions to test riding products in development. Product development also includes collaborating with OEM customers across end-markets, field testing by professional athletes and sponsored race teams and working with enthusiasts and other users of our products. This feedback helps us to develop innovative products that meet our demanding standards as well as the evolving needs of professional and recreational end users and to quickly commercialize these products.
Our research and development activities are supported by state-of-the-art engineering software design tools, integrated manufacturing facilities and a performance-testing center equipped to enhance product safety, durability and performance. Our testing center collects data and tests products prior to and after commercial introduction. Suspension products undergo a variety of rigorous performance and accelerated life tests before they are introduced into the market. Research and development expenses totaled approximately $31.8 million, $25.8 million and $20.2 million in fiscal years 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively.
Intellectual property
Intellectual property is an important aspect of our business. We rely upon a combination of patents, trademarks, trade names, licensing arrangements, trade secrets, know-how and proprietary technology and we secure and protect our intellectual property rights.
Our intellectual property counsel diligently protects our new technologies with patents and trademarks and defends against patent infringement allegations. We patent our proprietary technologies related to vehicle suspension and other products in the U.S. and various foreign patent offices. Our principal intellectual property also includes our registered trademarks in the U.S. and a number of international jurisdictions, including the marks FOX®, FOX RACING SHOX® and REDEFINE YOUR LIMITS®. Although our intellectual property is important to our business operations and constitutes a valuable asset in the aggregate, we do not believe that any single patent, trademark or trade secret is critical to the success of our business as a whole. We cannot be certain that our patent applications will be issued or that any issued patents will provide us with any competitive advantages or will not be challenged by third parties.
In addition to the foregoing protections, we generally control access to and use of our proprietary and other confidential information using internal and external controls, including contractual protections with employees, OEMs, distributors and others.
Customers
Our OEM customers include market leaders in their respective categories, and they help define, as well as respond to, consumer trends in their respective industries. These OEM customers include our products on a number of their performance models. We believe OEMs often use our products to improve the marketability and demand of their own products, which, in turn, strengthens our brand image. In addition, consumers select our performance-defining products in the aftermarket channel, where we market through a global network of dealers and distributors. We currently sell to more than 200 OEMs and distribute our products to more than 5,000 retail dealers and distributors worldwide. In 2019, 63% of our sales resulted from sales to OEM customers and 37% resulted from sales to dealers and distributors for resale in the aftermarket channel. No material portion of our business is subject to renegotiation of profits or termination of contracts or subcontracts at the election of the U.S. government.
Sales attributable to our 10 largest OEM customers, which can vary from year-to-year, collectively accounted for approximately 44%, 43% and 42% of our sales in 2019, 2018 and 2017. Our sales to Ford, a powered vehicles OEM, accounted for approximately 11%, 8% and 8% in 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively.
Although we refer to the branded bike OEMs that use our products throughout this document as "our customers," "our OEM customers" or "our bike OEM customers," branded bike OEMs often use contract manufacturers to manufacture and assemble their bikes. As a result, even though we typically negotiate price and volume requirements directly with our bike OEM customers, the contract manufacturer may place the purchase order and therefore assumes the payment responsibilities.
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Our North American sales totaled $502.3 million, $388.7 million, and $280.9 million, or 67%, 63% and 59%, of our total sales in 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively. Our international sales totaled $248.8 million, $230.5 million and $194.8 million or 33%, 37% and 41% of our total sales in 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively. Sales attributable to countries outside the United States are based on shipment location. Our international sales, however, do not necessarily reflect the location of the end users of our products, as many of our products are incorporated into bikes and powered vehicles that are assembled at international locations and then shipped back to the United States. Additional information about our product revenues and certain geographical information is available in Note 2 - Revenues of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements in this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
Additional information regarding our sales, income, and total assets is available in Item 6. "Selected Financial Information."
Powered Vehicles
We sell our powered vehicle-suspension products to OEMs, including Arctic Cat, BRP, Ford, Honda, Indian Motorcycles, Jeep, Kawasaki, Polaris, Toyota, and Yamaha. We also are continually nurturing and developing relationships with our existing and new OEMs, as the powered vehicles market continues to grow. After incorporating our products on their powered vehicles, OEMs typically sell their powered vehicles to independent dealers, which then sell directly to consumers.
In the aftermarket, we typically sell to dealers and distributors, both domestically and internationally. Our dealers sell directly to consumers. When we sell to our distributors, they sell to independent dealers, which then sell directly to consumers.
Specialty Sports
We sell our bike suspension and components products to a broad network of domestic and international bike OEMs, including Cannondale, Canyon, Cube, Giant, Lapierre, Merida, Pivot, Santa Cruz Bicycles, Scott, Specialized, Trek, Yeti Cycles and YT. We have long-standing relationships with many of the top bike OEMs. After incorporating our products on their bikes, OEMs typically sell their bikes to independent dealers, which then sell directly to consumers.
In the aftermarket, we typically sell to U.S. dealers and through distributors internationally. Our dealers sell directly to aftermarket consumers. Our overseas distributors sell to independent dealers, which then sell directly to consumers.
Sales and marketing
We employ specialized and dedicated sales professionals. Each sales professional is fully responsible for servicing either OEM or aftermarket customers within our product categories, which ensures that our customers are in contact with capable and knowledgeable sales professionals to address their specific needs. We strongly believe that providing a high level of service to our end customers is essential to maintaining our reputational excellence in the marketplace. Our sales professionals receive training on the brands' latest products and technologies and attend trade shows and events to increase their market knowledge.
Our marketing strategy focuses on strengthening and promoting our brands in the marketplace. We strategically focus our marketing efforts on enthusiasts seeking high-end, performance-defining products and systems through promotions at destination riding locations and individual and team sponsorships. We believe the performance of our products has been demonstrated by, and our brands benefit from, the success of professional athletes who use our products in elite competitive events such as the Union Cycliste Internationale Mountain Bike World Cup and the X Games. We also believe these successes positively influence the purchasing habits of enthusiasts and other consumers seeking performance-defining products.
We believe that our strategic focus on the performance and racing segments in our markets, including our sponsorships of a number of professional athletes and race teams, influences many aspiring and enthusiast consumers and enables our products to be sold at premium price points. In order to continue to enhance our brand image, we will need to maintain our position in the suspension products industry and to continue to provide high-quality products and services.
We have also been able to develop long-term strategic relationships with leading OEMs. Our reputation for performance-defining products plays a critical role in our aftermarket sales to consumers.
In addition to our web properties and traditional marketing channels, such as print advertising and tradeshows, we maintain an active social media presence, including an Instagram feed, Facebook page, YouTube channel, Vimeo channel and Twitter feed to increase brand awareness, foster loyalty and build a community of users. As strategies and marketing plans are developed for our products, our internal marketing and communications group works to ensure brand cohesion and consistency.
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Manufacturing and backlog
We manufacture and complete final assembly on most of our products. By controlling the manufacturing process of our products, we can maintain our strict quality standards, customize our machines and processes for the specific requirements of our products, and quickly respond to feedback we receive on our products in development and otherwise. Furthermore, manufacturing our own products enables us to adjust our labor and production inputs to meet seasonal demands and the customized requirements of some of our customers.
During 2018, we moved our corporate headquarters from Scotts Valley, California to our offices in Braselton, Georgia. We are also currently constructing an approximately 336,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility in Hall County, Georgia to diversify our manufacturing platform and provide additional long-term capacity to support growth in our Powered Vehicles Group. The first phase of the Hall County, Georgia project is expected to be completed late in the second quarter of 2020 and will be used for manufacturing, warehousing, distribution and office space. Our Scotts Valley, California location will remain an essential shared services facility housing certain corporate functions.
We had approximately $65.1 million and $72.9 million in firm backlog orders at January 3, 2020 and December 28, 2018, respectively. The decrease in 2019 backlog, as compared to 2018, was due to changes in the seasonality and timing of order placement.
Suppliers and raw materials
The primary raw materials used in the production of our products are aluminum, magnesium, carbon and steel. We generally use multiple suppliers for our raw materials and believe that our raw materials are in adequate supply and available from many suppliers at competitive prices. Prices for our raw materials fluctuate from time to time, but historically, price fluctuations have not materially impacted our business.
We work closely with our supply base, and depend upon certain suppliers to provide raw inputs, such as forgings, castings and molded polymers that have been optimized for weight, structural integrity, wear and cost. In certain circumstances, we depend upon a limited number of suppliers for such raw inputs. We typically have no firm contractual sourcing agreements with our suppliers other than purchase orders.
Miyaki is the exclusive producer of the Kashima coating for our suspension component tubes. As part of our agreement with Miyaki, or the Kashima Agreement, we have been granted the exclusive right to use the trademark "KASHIMACOAT" on products comprising the aluminum finished parts for suspension components (e.g., tubes) and on related sales and marketing material worldwide, subject to a minimum model year order and certain other exclusions. The Kashima Agreement does not contain minimum purchase obligations.
Employees
As of January 3, 2020, we had approximately 2,600 full-time employees in the United States, Canada, Europe and Taiwan. We also use part-time employees at our manufacturing facilities to help us meet seasonal demands. None of our employees are subject to collective bargaining agreements.
Practices related to working capital items
The Company does not believe that it, or the industry in general, has any special practices or special conditions affecting working capital items that are material to understanding our business. Information about the Company’s working capital is incorporated herein by reference to Item 7. "Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition" and "Results of Operations," and to the "Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows" within Item 8 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
Government regulation
Environmental
Our manufacturing operations, facilities and properties in the United States, Canada and Taiwan are subject to evolving foreign, international, federal, state and local environmental and occupational health and safety laws and regulations, including those governing air emissions, wastewater discharge and the storage and handling of chemicals and hazardous substances. If we fail to comply with such laws and regulations, we could be subject to significant fines, penalties, costs, liabilities or restrictions on operations, which could negatively affect our financial condition.
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We believe that our operations are in compliance, in all material respects, with applicable environmental and occupational health and safety laws and regulations, and our compliance with such laws and regulations has not had, nor is it expected to have, a material impact on our earnings or competitive position. However, new requirements, more stringent application of existing requirements or the discovery of previously unknown environmental conditions could result in material environmental related expenditures in the future.
Employment
We are subject to numerous foreign, federal, state and local government laws and regulations governing our relationships with our employees, including those relating to minimum wage, overtime, working conditions, hiring and firing, non-discrimination, work permits and employee benefits. We believe that our operations are conducted in compliance, in all material respects, with such laws and regulations. We have never experienced a material work stoppage or disruption to our business relating to employee matters. We believe that our relationship with our employees is good.
Consumer safety
We are subject to the jurisdiction of the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission ("CPSC"), and other federal, state and foreign regulatory bodies including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration ("NHTSA"), which enforces the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety standards. Under CPSC regulations, a manufacturer of consumer goods is obligated to notify the CPSC, if, among other things, the manufacturer becomes aware that one of its products has a defect that could create a substantial risk of injury. If the manufacturer has not already undertaken to do so, the CPSC may require a manufacturer to recall a product, which may involve product repair, replacement or refund. During the past three years, we initiated two voluntary product recalls. For additional information, see Item 1A."Risk Factors" below.
Government contracts
No material portion of our business is subject to renegotiation of profits or termination of contracts or subcontracts at the election of the U.S. government.
Financial information about segments and geographic areas
We operate in one reportable segment: manufacturing, sale and service of performance-defining products. Additional information about our product segment and certain geographic information is available in Note 2 - Revenues of the "Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements" in this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
Corporate and available information
Our principal executive offices are located at 6634 Hwy 53, Braselton, GA 30517, and our telephone number is (831) 274-6500. Our website address is www.ridefox.com.
We file reports with the SEC, including Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K and any other filings required by the SEC. We make available through the Investor Relations section of our website, free of charge, our Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Current Reports on Form 8-K, and all amendments to those reports filed or furnished pursuant to Section 13(a) or 15(d) of the Exchange Act, as soon as reasonably practicable after we electronically file such material with, or furnish it to, the SEC. The information on our website is not incorporated by reference into this Annual Report on Form 10-K or in any other report or document we file with the SEC.
The public may read and copy any materials we file with the SEC at the SEC's Public Reference Room at 100 F Street, NE, Washington, DC 20549. The public may obtain information on the operation of the Public Reference Room by calling the SEC at 1-800-SEC-0330. The SEC maintains an Internet site (http://www.sec.gov) that contains reports, proxy and information statements, and other information regarding issuers that file electronically with the SEC.

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ITEM 1A. RISK FACTORS
Our business, financial condition, operating results and prospects could be materially and adversely affected by various risks and uncertainties that are described herein. In addition to the risks and uncertainties discussed elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K, you should carefully consider the risks and uncertainties described below. If any of these risks actually occur, our business, financial condition, operating results and prospects could be materially and adversely affected. In that event, the trading price of our common stock could decline.
Risks related to our business
If we are unable to continue to enhance existing products and develop, manufacture and market new products that respond to consumer needs and preferences and achieve market acceptance, we may experience a decrease in demand for our products, and our business and financial results could suffer.
Our growth strategy involves the continuous development of innovative performance-defining products. We may not be able to compete as effectively with our competitors, and ultimately satisfy the needs and preferences of our customers and the end users of our products, unless we can continue to enhance existing products and develop new, innovative products in the global markets in which we compete. In addition, we must continuously compete for not only end users who purchase our products through the dealers and distributors who are our customers, but also for the OEMs, which incorporate our products into their bikes and powered vehicles. These OEMs regularly evaluate our products against those of our competitors to determine if they are allowing the OEMs to achieve higher sales and market share on a cost-effective basis. Should one or more of our OEM customers determine that they could achieve overall better financial results by incorporating a competitor’s new or existing product, they would likely do so, which could harm our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Product development requires significant financial, technological and other resources. While we expended approximately $31.8 million, $25.8 million and $20.2 million for our research and development efforts in 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively, there can be no assurance that this level of investment in research and development will be sufficient in the future to maintain our competitive advantage in product innovation, which could cause our business, financial condition or results of operations to suffer.
Product improvements and new product introductions require significant planning, design, development and testing at the technological, product and manufacturing process levels, and we may experience unanticipated delays in our introduction of product improvements or new products. Our competitors’ new products may beat our products to market, be more effective and/or less expensive than our products, obtain better market acceptance or render our products obsolete. Any new products that we develop may not receive market acceptance or otherwise generate any meaningful sales or profits for us relative to our expectations. In addition, one of our competitors could develop an unforeseen and entirely new product or technology that renders our products less desirable or obsolete, which could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
We face intense competition in all product lines, including from some competitors that may have greater financial and marketing resources. Failure to compete effectively against competitors would negatively impact our business and operating results.
The industries in which we operate are highly competitive. We compete with a number of other manufacturers that produce and sell performance-defining products to OEMs and aftermarket dealers and distributors, including OEMs that produce their own lines of products for their own use. Our continued success depends on our ability to continue to compete effectively against our competitors, some of which have significantly greater financial, marketing and other resources than we have. In addition, several of our competitors offer broader product lines to OEMs, which they may sell in connection with suspension products as part of a package offering. In the future, our competitors may be able to maintain and grow brand strength and market share more effectively or quickly than we do by anticipating the course of market developments more accurately than we do, developing products that are superior to our products, creating manufacturing or distribution capabilities that are superior to ours, producing similar products at a lower cost than we can or adapting more quickly than we do to new technologies or evolving regulatory, industry or customer requirements, among other possibilities. In addition, we may encounter increased competition if our current competitors broaden their product offerings by beginning to produce additional types of performance-defining products or through competitor consolidations. We could also face competition from well-capitalized entrants into these product markets, as well as aggressive pricing tactics by other manufacturers trying to gain market share. As a result, our products may not be able to compete successfully with our competitors’ products, which could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
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Our business is sensitive to economic conditions that impact consumer spending. Our performance-defining products, and the bike and powered vehicles into which they are incorporated, are discretionary purchases and may be adversely impacted by changes in the economy.
Our business depends substantially on global economic and market conditions. In particular, we believe that currently a significant majority of the end users of our products live in the United States and countries in Europe. These areas have historically experienced recessions, disruptions in banking and/or financial systems, economic weakness and uncertainty. In addition, our products are recreational in nature and are generally discretionary purchases by consumers. Consumers are usually more willing to make discretionary purchases during periods of favorable general economic conditions and high consumer confidence. Discretionary spending may also be affected by many other factors, including interest rates, the availability of consumer credit, taxes and consumer confidence in future economic conditions. During periods of unfavorable economic conditions, or periods when other negative market factors exist, consumer discretionary spending is typically reduced, which in turn could reduce our product sales and have a negative effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
There could also be a number of secondary effects resulting from an economic downturn, such as insolvency of our suppliers resulting in product delays, an inability of our OEM and distributor and dealer customers to obtain credit to finance purchases of our products, customers delaying payment to us for the purchase of our products due to financial hardship or an increase in bad debt expense. Any of these effects could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
If we are unable to maintain our premium brand image, our business may suffer.
OEMs dealers and distributors select our products in part because of the premium brand reputation we hold with them and our end users. Therefore, our success depends on our ability to maintain and build the image of our brands. We have focused on building our brands through producing products or acquiring businesses that produce products that we believe are innovative, high in performance and highly reliable. In addition, our brands benefit from our strong relationships with our OEM customers and dealers and distributors and through marketing programs aimed at bike and powered vehicle enthusiasts in various media and other channels. For example, we sponsor a number of professional athletes and professional race teams. In order to continue to enhance our brand image, we will need to maintain our position in the performance-defining products industry and continue to provide high-quality products and services. In addition, we will need to continue to invest in sponsorships, marketing and public relations.
There can be no assurance, however, that we will be able to maintain or enhance the strength of our brands in the future. Our brands could be adversely impacted by, among other things:
failure to develop new products that are innovative, performance-oriented, and reliable;
internal product quality control issues;
product quality issues on the bikes and powered vehicles on which our products are installed;
product recalls;
high profile component failures (such as a component failure during a race on a mountain bike ridden by an athlete that we sponsor);
negative publicity regarding our sponsored athletes;
high profile injury or death to one of our sponsored athletes;
inconsistent uses of our brand and our other intellectual property assets, as well as failure to protect our intellectual property; and
changes in consumer trends and perceptions.
Any adverse impact on our brand could in turn negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Our growth in the powered vehicle category is dependent upon our continued ability to expand our product sales into powered vehicles that require performance-defining products and the continued expansion of the market for these powered vehicles.
Our growth in the powered vehicle category is in part attributable to the expansion of the market for powered vehicles that require performance-defining products. Such market growth includes the creation of new classes of vehicles that need our products, such as trucks that are up-fitted to be off-road capable, and our ability to create products for these vehicles. In the event these markets stopped expanding or contracted, or we are unsuccessful in creating new products for these markets or other competitors successfully enter into these markets, we may fail to achieve future growth or our sales could decrease, and our business, financial condition or results of operations could be negatively affected.
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A significant portion of our sales are highly dependent on the demand for high-end bikes and a material decline in the demand for these bikes or their suspension components could have a material adverse effect on our business or results of operations.
During 2019, approximately 40% of our sales were generated from the sale of bike products. Part of our success has been attributable to the growth in the high-end bike industry, including increases in average retail sales prices, as better-performing product designs and technologies have been incorporated into these products. If the popularity of high-end or premium-priced bikes does not increase or declines, the number of bike enthusiasts seeking such bikes or premium-priced suspension products, wheels, cranks and other specialty components for their bikes does not increase or declines, or the average price point of these bikes declines, we may fail to achieve future growth or our sales could decrease, and our business, financial condition or results of operations could be negatively affected. In addition, if current bike enthusiasts stop purchasing our products due to changes in preferences, we may fail to achieve future growth or our sales could be decreased, and our business, financial condition or results of operations could be negatively affected.
Changes in our customer, channel and product mix could place demands that are more rigorous on our infrastructure and cause our profitability percentages to fluctuate.
From time to time, we may experience changes in our customer, channel and product mix from changes in demands from existing customers due to shifts in their products and markets. Additionally, the Company may pursue new customers and markets. Such changes in customers, channel and product mix could place demands that are more rigorous on our infrastructure and supply chain and could result in changes to our profitability and profitability percentages. If customers begin to require more lower-margin products from us and fewer higher-margin products, or place demands on our performance that increase our costs, our business, results of operations and financial condition may suffer.
A disruption in the operations of our facilities, or delays in our planned expansion of certain facilities, could have a negative effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
During 2017, we completed the process of moving all of the manufacturing of our bike suspension component products to our facility in Taichung, Taiwan. In connection with this move, we are utilizing, and expect to continue to use, suppliers who are located closer to our facility in Taichung, Taiwan for a number of materials and components. With the transition of our entire bike suspension component manufacturing to Taichung, Taiwan, we converted the Watsonville manufacturing facility to be a powered vehicle suspension products manufacturing location exclusively.
In addition, we are currently constructing an approximately 336,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility in Hall County, Georgia to diversify our manufacturing platform and provide additional long-term capacity to support growth in our Powered Vehicles Group. In the future, we may move additional manufacturing operations as we re-balance existing facilities or expand to new manufacturing locations. As a result, we have incurred, and expect to continue to incur, costs associated with some duplication of facilities, equipment and personnel, the amount of which could vary materially from our projections. Significant construction delays or other unforeseen difficulties in our Georgia expansion project and future expansion projects, whatever the cause, could have a material adverse effect on our business, customer relationships, financial condition, operating results, cash flow, and liquidity.
Equipment failures, delays in deliveries or catastrophic loss at any of our facilities could lead to production or service disruptions, curtailments or shutdowns. In the event of a stoppage in production or a slowdown in production due to high employee turnover or a labor dispute at any of our facilities, even if only temporary, or if we experience delays as a result of events that are beyond our control, delivery times to our customers could be severely affected. If there was a manufacturing disruption in any of our manufacturing facilities, we might be unable to meet product delivery requirements and our business, financial condition or results of operations could be negatively affected, even if the disruption was covered in whole or in part by our business interruption insurance. Any significant delay in deliveries to our customers could lead to increased returns or cancellations, expose us to damage claims from our customers or damage our brand and, in turn, negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
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Our facilities or operations could be adversely affected by events outside of our control, such as natural disasters, wars or health epidemics.
We may be impacted by natural disasters, wars, health epidemics or other events outside of our control. For example, we have facilities located in seismically active regions in Northern California and Nevada, and our bike suspension manufacturing is located in Taiwan, which is prone to typhoons. If major disasters such as earthquakes, typhoons or other events occur, our facilities or those of our suppliers or customers may be seriously damaged, which could result in the disruption of our production and shipment of our products. In addition, beginning in late 2019, the media has reported a public health epidemic originating in China, prompting precautionary government-imposed closures of certain travel and business. It is unknown whether and how global supply chains may be affected if such an epidemic persists for an extended period of time. We may incur additional expenses, production delays, or reductions in customer orders relating to such events outside of our control, which could have a material adverse impact on our business, operating results and financial condition.
Work stoppages or other disruptions at seaports could adversely affect our operating results.
A significant portion of our goods move through ports on the Western Coast of the United States. We have a global supply chain and we import products from our third-party vendors as well as our Fox Taiwan facility into the United States largely through ports on the West Coast. Longshoremen, none of whom are our employees, must offload freight from ships arriving at West Coast ports. We do not control the activities of these employees or seaports and we could suffer supply chain disruptions due to any disputes, capacity shortages, slowdowns or shutdowns that may occur, as was experienced in February 2015, in relation to certain West Coast ports. While the West Coast ports labor dispute ended with a five-year agreement, it lasted longer than we forecasted, and any similar labor dispute in the future could potentially have a negative effect on both our financial condition and results of operations.
Our business depends substantially on our ability to attract and retain experienced and qualified talent, including our senior management team.
We are dependent upon the contributions, talent and leadership of our senior management team, particularly our Chief Executive Officer, Michael C. Dennison. We do not have a "key person" life insurance policy on Mr. Dennison or any other key employees. We believe that the top nine members of our senior management team are key to establishing our focus and executing our corporate strategies as they have extensive knowledge of our systems and processes. Given our senior management team’s knowledge of our industry and the limited number of direct competitors in the industry, we believe that it could be difficult to find replacements should any of the members of our senior management team leave. For example, our former Chief Financial Officer, Zvi Glasman, resigned effective November 1, 2019, and, although we have named an interim replacement, we have not yet designated a permanent replacement for Mr. Glasman. If we are unable to designate a permanent Chief Financial Officer in a timely manner, there may be an adverse effect on our financial reporting processes, our financial controls and procedures and our ability to raise additional capital.
We could also be adversely affected if we fail to attract and retain talent throughout our organization. For instance, we rely on skilled and well-trained engineers for the design and production of our products, as well as in our research and development functions. Competition for such individuals is intense, particularly in California where several of our facilities are located. Our inability to attract or retain qualified employees in our design, production or research and development functions or elsewhere in our Company could result in diminished quality of our products and delinquent production schedules or impede our ability to develop new products.
Our failure to adequately address any of these issues could have a material adverse effect on our business, operating results and financial condition.
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We may not be able to sustain our past growth or successfully implement our growth strategy, which may have a negative effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
We grew our sales from approximately $619.2 million in 2018 to approximately $751.0 million in 2019. This growth rate may be unsustainable. Our future growth will depend upon various factors, including the strength of the image of our brands, our ability to continue to produce innovative performance-defining products, consumer acceptance of our products, competitive conditions in the marketplace, our ability to make strategic acquisitions, the growth in emerging markets for products requiring high-end suspension products and, in general, the continued growth of the high-end bike and powered vehicle markets into which we sell our products. Our beliefs regarding the future growth of markets for high-end suspension products are based largely on qualitative judgments and limited sources and may not be reliable. If we are unable to sustain our past growth or successfully implement our growth strategy, our business, financial condition or results of operations could be negatively affected.
The professional athletes and race teams who use our products are an important aspect of the image of our brands. The loss of the support of professional athletes for our products or the inability to attract new professional athletes may harm our business.
If current or future professional athletes and race teams do not use our products, our brands could lose value and our sales could decline. While our sponsorship agreements typically restrict our sponsored athletes and race teams from promoting, endorsing or using competitors’ products that compete directly within our product categories during the term of the sponsorship agreements, we do not typically have long-term contracts with any of the athletes or race teams whom we sponsor.
If we are unable to maintain our current relationships with these professional athletes and race teams, these professional athletes and race teams are no longer popular, our sponsored athletes and race teams fail to have success or we are unable to continue to attract the endorsement of new professional athletes and race teams in the future, the value of our brands and our sales could decline.
We depend on our relationships with dealers and distributors and their ability to sell and service our products. Any disruption in these relationships could harm our sales.
We sell our aftermarket products to dealers and distributors, and we depend on their willingness and ability to market and sell our products to consumers and provide customer and product service as needed. We also rely on our dealers and distributors to be knowledgeable about our products and their features. If we are not able to educate our dealers and distributors so that they may effectively sell our products as part of a positive buying experience, or if they fail to implement effective retail sales initiatives, focus selling efforts on our competitors’ products, reduce the quantity of our products that they sell or reduce their operations due to financial difficulties or otherwise, our brand and business could suffer.
We do not control our dealers or distributors and many of our contracts allow these entities to offer our competitors’ products. Our competitors may incentivize our dealers and distributors to favor their products. In addition, we do not have long-term contracts with a majority of our dealers and distributors, and our dealers and distributors are not obligated to purchase specified amounts of our products. In fact, the majority of our dealers and distributors buy from us on a purchase order basis. Consequently, with little or no notice, many of these dealers and distributors may terminate their relationships with us or materially reduce their purchases of our products. If we were to lose one or more of our dealers or distributors, we would need to obtain a new dealer or distributor to cover the particular location or product line, which may not be possible on favorable terms or at all.
Alternatively, we could use our own sales force to replace such a dealer or distributor, but expanding our sales force into new locations takes a significant amount of time and resources and may not be successful. Further, many of our international distribution contracts contain exclusivity arrangements, which may prevent us from replacing or supplementing our current distributors under certain circumstances.
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We are a supplier in the high-end bike and powered vehicles markets, and our business is dependent in large part on the orders we receive from our OEM customers and from their success.
As a supplier to OEM customers, we are dependent in large part on the success of the business of our OEM customers. Model year changes by our OEM customers may adversely impact our sales or cause our sales to vary from quarter to quarter. In addition, losses in market share individually or a decline in the overall market of our OEM customers or the discontinuance by our OEM customers of their products which incorporate our products could negatively impact our business, financial condition or results of operations. For example, if our bike producing OEM customers reduce production of their high-end bikes, their orders to us for our products would in turn be reduced, which could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
A relatively small number of customers account for a substantial portion of our sales. The loss of all or a substantial portion of our sales to any of these customers, whether through the temporary or permanent discontinuation of their products which incorporate our products or otherwise, or the loss of market share by these customers could have a material adverse impact on us and our results of operations.
Sales attributable to our five largest OEM customers, which can vary from year to year, collectively accounted for approximately 32% of our sales in fiscal years 2019, 2018 and 2017. The loss of all or a substantial portion of our sales to any of these OEM customers, whether through the temporary or permanent discontinuation of their products which incorporate our products or otherwise, or the loss of market share by these customers could have a material adverse impact on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
In particular, sales to Ford, a powered vehicles OEM, accounted for approximately 11%, 8% and 8% in 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively. In the event that Ford were to experience manufacturing or other problems, or were to fail to pay us, it could have a material impact on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Currency exchange rate fluctuations could impact gross margins and expenses.
Foreign currency fluctuations could in the future have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations. We sell our products inside and outside of the United States primarily in U.S. Dollars and New Taiwan Dollars. However, some of the OEMs purchasing products from us sell their products in Europe and other foreign markets using the Euro and other foreign currencies. As a result, as the U.S. Dollar appreciates against these foreign currencies, our products will become relatively more expensive for these OEMs. Accordingly, competitive products that our OEM customers can purchase in other currencies may become more attractive and we could lose sales as these OEMs seek to replace our products with cheaper alternatives. In addition, should the U.S. Dollar depreciate significantly, this could have the effect of decreasing our gross margins and adversely impact our business, financial condition or results of operations.
With a majority of our manufacturing operations for our bike products occurring in Taiwan, a percentage of our sales and expenses are denominated in the New Taiwan Dollar. Should the New Taiwan Dollar appreciate against the U.S. Dollar, this could have the effect of decreasing our sales, increasing our expenses, and decreasing our profitability.
Additionally, certain of our operations take place in Canada and a percentage of our sales and expenses are denominated in Canadian Dollars. Our operating profitability could be negatively impacted as a result of changes in the exchange rate between the U.S. Dollar and the Canadian Dollar.
Our international operations are exposed to risks associated with conducting business globally.
As a result of our international presence, we are exposed to increased risks inherent in conducting business outside of the United States. In addition to foreign currency risks, these risks include:
difficulty in transporting materials internationally, including labor disputes at West Coast ports, which handle a large amount of our products;
increased difficulty in protecting our intellectual property rights and trade secrets;
changes in tax laws and the interpretation of those laws;
exposure to local economic conditions;
unexpected government action or changes in legal or regulatory requirements;
geopolitical regional conflicts, terrorist activity, political unrest, civil strife, acts of war and other political uncertainty;
changes in tariffs, quotas, trade barriers and other similar restrictions on sales;
the effects of any anti-American sentiments on our brands or sales of our products;
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increased difficulty in ensuring compliance by employees, agents and contractors with our policies as well as with the laws of multiple jurisdictions, including but not limited to the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, local international environmental, health and safety laws, and increasingly complex regulations relating to the conduct of international commerce;
increased difficulty in controlling and monitoring foreign operations from the United States, including increased difficulty in identifying and recruiting qualified personnel for our foreign operations; and
increased difficulty in staffing and managing foreign operations or international sales.
An adverse change in any of these conditions could have a negative effect upon our business, financial condition or results of operations.
U.S. policies related to global trade and tariffs could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations.
The current domestic and international political environment, including existing and potential changes to U.S. policies related to global trade and tariffs, have resulted in uncertainty surrounding the future state of the global economy. In 2018, the U.S. imposed tariffs of 25 percent on steel and 10 percent on aluminum, with only a handful of countries exempt from the increase. Since the beginning of the Trump Administration, the United States and China have imposed a variety of tariffs on most goods traded between the two countries, though a recent trade deal has lessened the threat of further escalation. The United States has imposed tariffs on products from the European Union as a result of a dispute at the World Trade Organization. Plans by the United States to impose tariffs on global imports of automobiles and auto parts appear to be on hold for now. While we have limited exposure to implemented tariffs at this time, any expansion in the types of tariffs implemented has the potential to negatively impact our supply chain costs as well as the operating performance of our customers, thus negatively affecting our sales, gross margin and operating performance. Additionally, there is a risk that the U.S. tariffs on imports could be met with additional retaliatory tariffs on U.S. produced exports and that the broader trade uncertainty could intensify. This has the potential to significantly impact global trade and economic conditions in many of the regions where we do business and have a material adverse effect on our results of operations.
Our sales could be adversely impacted by the disruption or cessation of sales by other bike component manufacturers or if other bike component manufacturers enter into the specialty bike component market.
Most of the bikes incorporating our suspension products also use products and components manufactured by other bike component manufacturers. If such component manufacturers were to cease selling their products and components on a standalone basis, their sales are disrupted, or their competitive market position or reputation is diminished, customers could migrate to competitors that sell complementary bike products that we do not sell. Moreover, such bike component manufacturers could begin manufacturing bike suspension products, wheels, or cranks, or bundle their bike components with suspension products, wheels or cranks manufactured by competitors. If any of the foregoing were to occur, our sales could decrease and our business, financial condition or results of operations could suffer.
We have been and may become subject to intellectual property disputes that could cause us to incur significant costs or pay significant damages or that could prohibit us from selling our products.
As we develop new products or attempt to use our brands in connection with new products, we seek to avoid infringing the valid patents and other intellectual property rights of our competitors. However, from time to time, third parties have alleged, or may allege in the future, that our products and/or trademarks infringe upon their proprietary rights. We will evaluate any such claims and, where appropriate, may obtain or seek to obtain licenses or other business arrangements. To date, there have been no significant interruptions in our business as a result of any claims of infringement, and we do not hold patent infringement insurance. Any claim, regardless of its merit, could be expensive, time consuming to defend and distract management from our business. Moreover, if our products or brands are found to infringe third-party intellectual property rights, we may be unable to obtain a license to use such technology or associated intellectual property rights on acceptable terms. A court determination that our brands, products or manufacturing processes infringe the intellectual property rights of others could result in significant liability and/or require us to make material changes to our products and/or manufacturing processes or preclude our ability to use certain brands. In most circumstances, we are not indemnified for our use of a licensor’s intellectual property, if such intellectual property is found to be infringing. Any of the foregoing results could cause us to redesign our products or defend legal actions, which could cause us to incur substantial costs that could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
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If we are unable to enforce our intellectual property rights, our reputation and sales could be adversely affected.
Intellectual property is an important component of our business. We patent our proprietary technologies related to vehicle suspension and other products in the U.S. and various foreign patent offices. Additionally, we have registered or have applied for trademarks and service marks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office and a number of foreign countries, including the marks FOX®, FOX RACING SHOX®, RACE FACE® and REDEFINE YOUR LIMITS®, to be used with certain goods and services. When appropriate, we may from time to time assert our rights against those who infringe on our patents, trademarks, trade dress, or other intellectual property. However, we may not be successful in enforcing our patents or asserting trademark, trade name or trade dress protection with respect to our brand names and our product designs, and third parties may seek to oppose or challenge our patents or trademark registrations. Further, these legal efforts may not be successful in reducing sales of suspension products by those infringing. In addition, our pending patent applications may not result in the issuance of patents, and even issued patents may be contested, circumvented or invalidated and may not provide us with proprietary protection or competitive advantages. If our efforts to develop and enforce our intellectual property are unsuccessful, or if a third party misappropriates our rights, this may adversely affect our business, financial condition or results of operations. Additionally, intellectual property protection may be unavailable or limited in some foreign countries where laws or law enforcement practices may not protect our proprietary rights as fully as in the United States, and it may be more difficult for us to successfully challenge the use of our proprietary rights by other parties in these countries. Furthermore, other competitors may be able to successfully produce products that imitate certain of our products without infringing upon any of our patents, trademarks or trade dress. The failure to prevent or limit infringements and imitations could have a permanent negative impact on the pricing of our products or reduce our product sales and product margins, even if we are ultimately successful in limiting the distribution of a product that infringes our rights, which in turn may affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Although we enter into non-disclosure agreements with employees, OEMs, distributors and others to protect our confidential information and trade secrets, we may be unable to prevent such parties from breaching these agreements with us and using our intellectual property in an unauthorized manner. If our efforts to protect our intellectual property are unsuccessful, or if a third party misappropriates our rights, our business may be adversely affected. Defending our intellectual property rights can be very expensive and time consuming, and there is no assurance that we will be successful.
If we inaccurately forecast demand for our products, we may manufacture insufficient or excess quantities or our manufacturing costs could increase, which could adversely affect our business.
We plan our manufacturing capacity based upon the forecasted demand for our products. In the OEM channel, our forecasts are based in large part on the number of our product specifications for new bikes and powered vehicles and on projections from our OEM customers. In the aftermarket channel, our forecasts are based partially on discussions with our dealers and distributors as well as our own assessment of markets. If we incorrectly forecast demand, we may incur capacity issues in our manufacturing plant and supply chain, increased material costs, increased freight costs, additional overtime, and costs associated with excess inventory, all of which in turn adversely impact our cost of sales and our gross margin. Economic weakness and uncertainty in the United States, Europe and other countries may make accurate forecasting particularly challenging.
In the future, if actual demand for our products exceeds forecasted demand, the margins on our incremental sales in excess of anticipated sales may be lower due to temporary higher costs, which could result in a decrease in our overall margins. While we generally manufacture our products upon receipt of customer orders, if actual demand is less than the forecasted demand for our products and we have already manufactured the products or committed to purchase materials in support of forecasted demand, we could be forced to hold excess inventories. In short, either excess or insufficient production due to inaccurate forecasting could have a negative effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Product recalls, and significant product repair and/or replacement due to product warranty costs and claims have had, and in the future, could have, a material adverse impact on our business.
Unless otherwise required by law, we generally provide a limited warranty for our products for a one or two-year period beginning on: (i) in the case of OEM sales, the date the bike or powered vehicle is purchased from an authorized OEM where our product is incorporated as original equipment on the purchased bike or powered vehicle; or (ii) in the case of aftermarket sales, the date the product is originally purchased from an authorized dealer. From time to time, our customers may negotiate for longer or different warranty coverage. In the ordinary course of business, we incur warranty costs and reserve against such costs in our financial statements. However, there is a risk that we could become aware of an underperforming product and be forced to adjust our warranty reserves or incur costs in excess of these reserves, which could adversely affect our results of operations.
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If any of our products are or are alleged to be defective, we may be required to participate in a recall involving such products. Our products and items where our product is incorporated as original equipment on the purchased item are subject to regulation by various agencies, including the NHTSA, the CPSC and similar state and international regulatory authorities. We have had in the past, and may have in the future, recalls (both voluntary and involuntary) of our products or of items that incorporate our products. For example, in October 2016, we initiated a voluntary recall of certain bicycle Float X2 shock absorber products. Most recently, in May 2017, we announced a voluntary recall of approximately 2,500 of FOX's Harley Davidson specific aftermarket motorcycle shock absorbers. In the case of OEM sales, each manufacturer has its own practices regarding product recalls and other product liability actions that could involve its suppliers. Additionally, as suppliers become more integrally involved in the design process and assume a greater role in the overall system design, OEMs could potentially look to us to share in the cost if faced with recalls and product liability claims.
Although we carry product liability and product recall insurance, no assurance can be made that such insurance will provide adequate coverage against any potential claims, such insurance is available in the appropriate markets or that we will be able to obtain such insurance on acceptable terms in the future. In addition to the direct costs related to these or other recalls, our aftermarket and OEM sales could be adversely affected if we do not have a ready replacement product for such recalled products. Such recall events could also adversely affect our brand image and have a negative effect on our relationships with our OEMs, sponsored athletes and race teams, or otherwise have a negative effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
An adverse determination in any material product liability claim against us could adversely affect our operating results or financial condition.
The use of our products by consumers, often under extreme conditions, exposes us to risks associated with product liability claims. If our products are defective or used incorrectly by our customers, bodily injury, property damage or other injury, including death, may result in, and could give rise to product liability claims against us, which could adversely affect our brand image or reputation. We have encountered product liability claims in the past and carry product liability insurance to help protect us against the costs of such claims, although our insurance may not be sufficient to cover all losses. Any losses that we may suffer from any product liability claims, and the effect that any product liability litigation may have upon the reputation and marketability of our products, may have a negative impact on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Our credit facility places operating restrictions on us and creates default risks.
Our credit facility contains covenants that place restrictions on our operating activities. These covenants, among other things, limit our ability to:
pay dividends or make distributions to our stockholders or redeem our stock;
incur additional indebtedness or permit additional encumbrances on our assets; and
make acquisitions or complete mergers or sales of assets, or engage in new businesses.
These restrictions may interfere with our ability to obtain financing or to engage in other business activities, which may have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
If we are unable to comply with the covenants contained in our credit facility, it could constitute an event of default and our lenders could declare all borrowings outstanding, together with accrued and unpaid interest, to be immediately due and payable. If we are unable to repay or otherwise refinance these borrowings when due, our lenders could sell the collateral securing our credit facility, which constitutes substantially all of our assets.
We will continue to have the ability to incur debt and our levels of debt may affect our operations and our ability to pay the principal of and interest on our debt.
In the future, we and our subsidiaries may be able to incur substantial additional debt from amendments to our credit facility with Bank of America and other named lenders (the "Credit Facility"), additional lending sources subject to the restrictions contained in the Credit Facility, or because of certain debt instruments we may issue.
As of January 3, 2020, we had $68.0 million of indebtedness and $177.0 million in revolving credit available to borrow under the Credit Facility. Our ability to borrow under the Credit Facility fluctuates from time to time due to, among other factors, our borrowings under the Credit Facility.
Our indebtedness could be costly or have adverse consequences, such as:
requiring us to dedicate a substantial portion of our cash flows from operations to payments on our debt;
limiting our ability to obtain future financing for working capital, capital expenditures, acquisitions, debt obligations and other general corporate requirements;
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making us more vulnerable to adverse conditions in the general economy or our industry and to fluctuations in our operating results, including affecting our ability to comply with and maintain any financial tests and ratios required under our indebtedness;
limiting our flexibility to engage in certain transactions or to plan for, or react to, changes in our business and industry;
putting us at a disadvantage compared to competitors that have less relative and/or less restrictive debt; and
subjecting us to additional restrictive financial and other covenants.
If we incur substantial additional indebtedness in the future, these higher levels of indebtedness may affect our ability to pay the principal of and interest on existing indebtedness and our creditworthiness generally.
Our outstanding indebtedness under the Credit Facility bears interest at a variable rate, which makes us more vulnerable to increases in interest rates and could cause our interest expense to increase and decrease cash available for operations and other purposes.
Borrowings under our Credit Facility bear interest on a variable rate, which increases and decreases based upon changes in the underlying interest rate and/or our leverage ratio. Any such increases in the interest rate or increases of our borrowings under the Credit Facility will increase our interest expense.
As of January 3, 2020, we had $68.0 million of indebtedness, bearing interest at a variable rate, outstanding under the Credit Facility. Recent interest rates in the United States have been at historically low levels, and any increase in these rates would increase our interest expense and reduce our funds available for operations and other purposes. Although from time to time we may enter into agreements to hedge a portion of our interest rate exposure, these agreements may be costly and may not protect against all interest rate fluctuations. Accordingly, we may experience material increases in our interest expense as a result of increases in interest rate levels generally. Based on the $68.0 million of variable interest rate indebtedness that was outstanding as of January 3, 2020, a hypothetical 100 basis point increase or decrease in the interest rate would have resulted in an approximately $0.7 million change to our interest expense for the year ended January 3, 2020.
Unanticipated changes in our tax provisions, the adoption of new tax legislation or exposure to additional tax liabilities could affect our financial performance.
Recently enacted U.S. tax legislation has significantly changed the U.S. federal income taxation of U.S. corporations by reducing the U.S. corporate income tax rate, adopting elements of a territorial tax system, imposing a one-time transition tax (or "deemed repatriation tax") on all undistributed earnings and profits of certain U.S. owned foreign corporations, revising the rules governing net operating losses and the rules governing foreign tax credits, repealing the performance-based compensation exception to the $1 million deduction limit on executive compensation and expanding the scope of employees to whom the limit applies, eliminating the deductibility of certain fringe benefits, permitting immediate expensing of certain capital expenditures, limiting interest deductions, modifying the tax treatment of like kind exchanges, and introducing new anti-base erosion provisions. Many of these changes were effective immediately upon the passage of the legislation, without any transition periods or grandfathering for existing transactions. The legislation is unclear in many respects and will continue to be subject to potential amendments and technical corrections, as well as notices, interpretations and implementation of regulations by the Treasury and IRS, any of which could lessen or increase certain adverse impacts of the legislation. For example, the interpretation the IRS Notice regarding the deduction limitation on executive compensation resulted in a $1.4 million increase in our tax provision in the third quarter of 2018. Likewise, regulations regarding the deduction for foreign derived intangible income and our estimates of amounts deductible resulted in a $1.5 million decrease in our tax provision in the third quarter of 2019 and a $1.8 million reduction of tax expense in the fourth quarter of 2019 related to such deduction in our 2018 tax returns. In addition, it remains unclear in some cases how these U.S. federal income tax changes will affect state and local taxation, which often uses federal taxable income as a starting point for computing state and local tax liabilities, or how foreign governments will view the changes.
Our analysis and interpretation of this legislation is ongoing. We asserted permanent reinvestment of the earnings of certain of our foreign subsidiaries in 2016 and 2017, and discontinued this assertion as a result of the December 2017 changes in legislation. As a result, the deemed repatriation tax, the accrual of state income and foreign withholding taxes on unremitted earnings, and certain other changes to U.S. taxation of amounts earned abroad have impacted our financial statements. Additionally, the reduction in the U.S. corporate tax rate, the revision of rules governing foreign tax credits, and changes in the rules regarding the sourcing of income are expected to have an impact on our ability to utilize our existing and future foreign tax credits, and as such, we have provided a partial valuation allowance on these tax assets. A full valuation allowance was avoided primarily due to the decision to implement a prudent and feasible tax planning strategy to restructure business functions. However, there can be no assurance that we will be able to implement such a plan. Changes in our estimates regarding our ability to utilize our foreign tax credits could have a material impact on our tax provision, net income and cash flows.
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There may be other material adverse effects resulting from the legislation that will become apparent as regulations are issued, and practice evolves through interpretation and case law. While some of the changes made by the tax legislation may adversely affect the Company in one or more reporting periods and prospectively, other changes may be beneficial. We continue to work with our tax advisors to determine the full impact that the recent tax legislation as a whole will have on us.
We are subject to income and other taxes in the United States and numerous foreign jurisdictions. Our tax liabilities in the United States and abroad are affected by the amounts we charge in intercompany transactions for inventory, services, licenses, funding and other items. We are subject to ongoing tax audits in various jurisdictions. Tax authorities may disagree with our intercompany charges, cross-jurisdictional transfer pricing or other matters, and may assess additional taxes as a result. We regularly assess the likely outcomes of these audits in order to determine the appropriateness of our tax provision. However, there can be no assurance that we will accurately predict the outcomes of these audits, and the amounts ultimately paid upon resolution of audits could be materially different from the amounts previously included in our income tax expense and therefore could have a material impact on our tax provision, net income and cash flows.
We are subject to certain risks in our manufacturing and in the testing of our products.
As of January 3, 2020, we employed approximately 2,600 full-time employees worldwide, a large percentage of which work at our manufacturing facilities. Our business involves complex manufacturing processes that can be inherently dangerous. Although we employ safety procedures in the design and operation of our facilities, there is a risk that an accident or death could occur in one of our facilities. In addition, prior to the introduction of new products, our employees test the products under rigorous conditions, which involve the risk of injury or death. Any accident could result in manufacturing or product delays, which could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations. The outcome of litigation is difficult to assess or quantify and the cost to defend litigation can be significant. As a result, the costs to defend any action or the potential liability resulting from any such accident or death or arising out of any other litigation, and any negative publicity associated therewith, could have a negative effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
We are subject to extensive United States federal and state, foreign and international safety, environmental, employment practices and other government regulations that may require us to incur expenses or modify product offerings in order to maintain compliance with such regulation, which could have a negative effect on our business and results of operations.
We are subject to extensive laws and regulations relating to safety, environmental, and other laws and regulations promulgated by the United States federal and state governments, as well as foreign and international regulatory authorities. Although we believe that our products, policies and processes comply with applicable safety, environmental, and other standards and related regulations, future regulations may require additional safety standards that would require additional expenses and/or modification of product offerings in order to maintain such compliance. Failure to comply with applicable regulations could result in fines, increased expenses to modify our products and harm to our reputation, all of which could have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Moreover, certain of our product offerings require us to comply with the rules and regulations of various standards of standard-setting organizations, such as the CPSC, the NHTSA, and the European Committee for Standardization ("CEN"). Failure to comply with the requirements of such organizations could result in the loss of certain customer contracts, fines and penalties, or both, which could have an adverse effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Unpredictability in the adoption, implementation and enforcement of increasingly stringent emission standards by multiple jurisdictions could adversely affect our business.
Certain of our products are subject to extensive statutory and regulatory requirements governing emission and noise, including standards imposed by the EPA, the EU, state regulatory agencies (such as the CARB) and other regulatory agencies around the world. We have made, and continue to make, capital and research expenditures to ensure our certain of our products comply with these emission standards. Developing products to meet numerous changing government regulatory requirements, with different implementation timelines and emission requirements, makes developing products efficiently for multiple markets complicated and could result in additional costs that may be difficult to recover in certain markets. In some cases, we may be required to develop new products to comply with new regulations, particularly those relating to air emissions. The successful development and introduction of new and enhanced products in order to comply with new regulatory requirements are subject to other risks, such as delays in product development, cost over-runs and unanticipated technical and manufacturing difficulties.
In addition to these risks, the nature and timing of government implementation and enforcement of increasingly stringent emission standards is unpredictable. Any delays in implementation or enforcement could result in the products we developed or modified to comply with these standards becoming unnecessary or becoming necessary later than expected, which in turn could delay, diminish or eliminate the expected return and may adversely affect our business.
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Increasing focus on environmental, social and governance responsibility may impose additional costs on us and expose us to new risks.
Regulators, stockholders and other interested constituencies have focused increasingly on the environmental, social and governance practices of companies. Our customers may require us to implement environmental, social or governance responsibility procedures or standards before they will continue to do business with us. Additionally, we may face reputational challenges in the event our environmental, social or governance responsibility procedures or standards do not meet the standards set by certain constituencies. The occurrence of any of the foregoing could have a material adverse effect on the price of our shares and our business, financial condition and results of operations.
Climate change and related regulatory responses may adversely impact our business.
There is increasing concern that a gradual increase in global average temperatures due to increased concentration of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere will cause significant changes in weather patterns around the globe and an increase in the frequency and severity of natural disasters. Changes in weather patterns and an increased frequency, intensity and duration of extreme weather conditions could, among other things, disrupt the operation of our supply chain, since our bike suspension manufacturing is entirely located in Taiwan, which is prone to typhoons, increase our product costs and impact the types and amounts of products that consumers purchase, since the majority of our products are used in outdoor recreation. As a result, the effects of climate change could have a long-term adverse impact on our business and results of operations.
In many of the countries in which we operate, governmental bodies are increasingly enacting legislation and regulations in response to the potential impacts of climate change. These laws and regulations, which may be mandatory, have the potential to impact our operations directly or indirectly as a result of required compliance by our suppliers and us. In addition, we may choose to take voluntary steps to mitigate our impact on climate change. As a result, we may experience increases in energy, production, transportation and raw material costs, capital expenditures or insurance premiums and deductibles. Inconsistency of legislation and regulations among jurisdictions may also affect the costs of compliance with such laws and regulations. Any assessment of the potential impact of future climate change legislation, regulations or industry standards, as well as any international treaties and accords, is uncertain given the scope of potential regulatory change in the countries in which we operate.
We are subject to employment practice laws and regulations, and, as such, are exposed to litigation risks.
We are subject to extensive laws and regulations relating employment practices, including wage and hour, wrongful termination and discrimination. Complying with such laws and regulations, and defending against allegations of our failure to comply (including meritless allegations), can be expensive and time consuming. We believe that our policies and processes comply with applicable employment standards and related regulations, however, we are subject to risks of litigation by employees and others that might involve allegations of illegal, unfair or inconsistent employment practices, including wage and hour violations and employment discrimination, misclassification of independent contractors as employees, wrongful termination and other concerns, which could require additional expenditures.
We are subject to environmental laws and regulation and potential exposure for environmental costs and liabilities.
Our operations, facilities and properties are subject to a variety of foreign, federal, state and local laws and regulations relating to health, safety and the protection of the environment. These environmental laws and regulations include those relating to the use, generation, storage, handling, transportation, treatment and disposal of solid and hazardous materials and wastes, emissions to air, discharges to waters and the investigation and remediation of contamination. Many of these laws impose strict, retroactive, joint and several liability upon owners and operators of properties, including with respect to environmental matters that occurred prior to the time the party became an owner or operator. In addition, we may have liability with respect to third party sites to which we send waste for disposal. Failure to comply with such laws and regulations can result in significant fines, penalties, costs, liabilities or restrictions on operations that could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations. From time to time, we have been involved in administrative or legal proceedings relating to environmental, health or safety matters and have incurred expenditures relating to such matters in the past.
We believe that our operations are in substantial compliance with applicable environmental laws and regulations. However, additional environmental issues relating to presently known or unknown matters could give rise to currently unanticipated investigation, assessment or expenditures. Compliance with laws or regulations that are more stringent, as well as different interpretations of existing laws, more vigorous enforcement by regulators or unanticipated events, could require additional expenditures that may materially affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
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Federal, state, local, foreign and international laws and regulations relating to land-use, and noise and air pollution may have a negative impact on our future sales and results of operations.
The products in our powered vehicles line are used in vehicles that are subject to numerous federal, state, local, foreign and international laws and regulations relating to noise and air pollution. Powered vehicles, and even bikes, have become subject to laws and regulations prohibiting their use on certain lands and trails. For example, in San Mateo County, California, mountain bikes are not allowed on county trails, and ATV and Side-by-Side riding is not allowed in Zion National Park, among many other national and state parks. In addition, recreational snowmobiling has been restricted in some national parks and federal lands in Canada, the United States and other countries. If more of these laws and regulations are passed and the users of our products lose convenient locations to ride their mountain bikes and powered vehicles, our sales could decrease and our business, financial condition or results of operations could suffer.
Fuel shortages, or high prices for fuel, could have a negative effect on the use of powered vehicles that use our products.
Gasoline or diesel fuel is required for the operation of the powered vehicles that use our products. There can be no assurance that the supply of these fuels will continue uninterrupted, that rationing will not be imposed or that the price of or tax on these petroleum products will not significantly increase in the future. Future shortages of gasoline and diesel fuel and substantial increases in the price of fuel could have a material adverse effect on our powered vehicle product category, which could have a negative effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
We do not control our suppliers, OEMs, other customers or partners, or require them to comply with a formal code of conduct, and actions that they might take could harm our reputation and sales.
We do not control our suppliers, OEMs, other customers or partners, or their labor, environmental or other practices. A violation of labor, environmental, intellectual property or other laws by our suppliers, OEMs, other customers or partners, or a failure of these parties to follow generally accepted ethical business practices, could create negative publicity and harm our reputation. In addition, we may be required to seek alternative suppliers or partners if these violations or failures were to occur. We do not inspect or audit compliance of our suppliers, OEMs, customers or partners with these laws or practices, and we do not require our suppliers, OEMs, customers or partners to comply with a formal code of conduct. Any conduct or actions that our suppliers could take could reduce demand for our products, harm our ability to meet demand or harm our reputation, brand image, business, financial condition or results of operations.
We depend on a limited number of suppliers for our materials and component parts for some of our products, and the loss of any of these suppliers or an increase in cost of raw materials could harm our business.
We depend on a limited number of suppliers for certain components. If our current suppliers, in particular the minority of those that are "single-source" suppliers, are unable to timely fulfill orders, or if we are required to transition to other suppliers, we could experience significant production delays or disruption to our business. We define a single-source supplier as a supplier from which we purchase all of a particular raw material or input used in our manufacturing operations, although other suppliers are available from which to purchase the same raw material or input or an equivalent substitute. We do not maintain long-term supply contracts with any of our suppliers and instead purchase these components on a purchase order basis. As a result, we cannot force any supplier to sell us the necessary components we use in creating our products and we could face significant supply disruptions should they refuse to do so. As the majority of our bike component manufacturing occurs in Taiwan, we could experience difficulties locating qualified suppliers geographically located closer to these facilities. Furthermore, such suppliers could experience difficulties in providing us with some or all of the materials we require, which could result in disruptions in our manufacturing operations. If we experience difficulties with our suppliers or manufacturing delays caused by our suppliers, whether in connection with our manufacturing operations in the United States or in Taiwan, our business, financial condition or results of operations could be materially and adversely impacted.
We also purchase various raw materials in order to manufacture our products. The main commodity items purchased for production include aluminum, magnesium, steel and carbon. Historically, price fluctuations for these components and raw materials have not had a material impact on our business. In the future, however, if we experience material increases in the price of components or raw materials and are unable to pass on those increases to our customers, or there are shortages in the availability of such component parts or raw materials, it could negatively affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
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In addition to our various single-source suppliers, we also rely on one "sole-source" supplier, Miyaki Corporation, or Miyaki. We define a sole-source supplier as a supplier of a raw material or input for which there is no other supplier of the same product or an equivalent substitute. Miyaki is the exclusive producer of the Kashima coating for our suspension component tubes. As part of our agreement with Miyaki, we have been granted the exclusive right to use the trademark "KASHIMACOAT" on products comprising the aluminum finished parts for suspension components (e.g., tubes) and on related sales and marketing material worldwide, subject to certain exclusions. Although we believe we could obtain other coatings of comparable utility from other sources if necessary, we could no longer obtain this specific Kashima coating or use the trademark "KASHIMACOAT" if Miyaki were to stop supplying us with this coating. The need to replace the Kashima coating could temporarily disrupt our business and harm our business, financial condition or results of operations.
Regulations related to conflict minerals may force us to continue to incur additional expenses and otherwise adversely impact our business.
The SEC rules regarding disclosure of the use of tin, tantalum, tungsten and gold, known as conflict minerals, in products manufactured by public companies require ongoing due diligence to determine whether such minerals originated from the Democratic Republic of Congo ("DRC"), or an adjoining country and whether such minerals helped finance the armed conflict in the DRC. As a public company, we are required to comply with the reporting obligations annually. There are costs associated with complying with these disclosure requirements, including costs to determine the origin of conflict minerals in our products. The effect of such rules on customer, supplier and/or consumer behavior could adversely affect the sourcing, supply and pricing of materials used in our products. As a result, we may also incur costs with respect to potential changes to products, processes or sources of supply. We may face disqualification as a supplier for customers and reputational challenges if our due diligence procedures do not enable us to verify the origins for all conflict minerals used in our products or to determine if such conflict minerals are conflict-free. Accordingly, these rules could have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations or financial condition.
We may incur higher employee costs in the future.
We are subject to government-mandated wage and benefit laws and regulations in many varying countries and jurisdictions. For example, the State of California, where a substantial number of our employees are located, has passed legislation designed to raise the statewide minimum wage gradually until it reaches $15.00 per hour in 2022. Under the California law, signed on April 4, 2016, the minimum wage increased to $11.00 per hour effective January 1, 2018, and will gradually increase each calendar year through January 1, 2022, when it will reach $15.00 per hour. As we expand internationally, we are also subject to applicable laws in each such jurisdiction. Increases in the mandated wage in any or all of the jurisdictions in which we operate could subject us to increased costs, thereby impacting our business, financial condition, or results of operations.
 We maintain a self-insured healthcare plan for our employees based in the United States. We have insurance coverage in place for individual claims above a specified amount in any year. Inflation in healthcare costs, as well as additional costs we may incur as a result of current or future federal or state healthcare legislation and regulations, could significantly increase our employee healthcare costs in the future. Continued increases in our employee costs could adversely affect our earnings, financial condition and liquidity.
We rely on increasingly complex information systems for management of our manufacturing, distribution, sales and other functions. If our information systems fail to perform these functions adequately or if we experience an interruption in our operations, our business could suffer.
All of our major operations, including manufacturing, distribution, sales and accounting, are dependent upon our complex information systems. Our information systems are vulnerable to damage or interruption from, among other things:
earthquake, fire, flood, hurricane and other natural disasters;
power loss, computer systems failure, internet and telecommunications or data network failure; and
hackers, computer viruses, software bugs or glitches.
Any damage or significant disruption in the operation of such systems or the failure of our information systems to perform as expected could disrupt our operations, reduce our efficiency, delay our fulfillment of customer orders or require significant unanticipated expenditures to correct, and thereby have a negative effect on our business, financial condition or results of operations.
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In 2015, we began the process of implementing a global enterprise resource planning system ("ERP"). The pilot phase of the new ERP was completed in fiscal year 2016 and additional phases were completed in 2018 and 2019. Remaining operations will be phased in over the next few fiscal years. ERP implementations are complex and time-consuming projects that involve substantial expenditures on system software and implementation activities. ERP implementations also require transformation of business and financial processes in order to reap the benefits of the ERP system. Any such transformation involves risks inherent in the conversion to a new computer system, including loss of information and potential disruption to our normal operations. Our business and results of operations may be adversely affected if we experience operating problems or cost overruns during the ERP implementation process, or if the ERP system and the associated process changes do not give rise to the benefits that we expect.
Additionally, if we do not effectively implement the ERP system as planned or the system does not operate as intended, the effectiveness of our internal control over financial reporting could be adversely affected.
We could be negatively impacted by cybersecurity attacks.
We use a variety of information technology systems in the ordinary course of business, which are potentially vulnerable to unauthorized access, computer viruses and cyber-attacks, including cyber-attacks to our information technology infrastructure and attempts by others to gain access to our propriety or sensitive information, and ranging from individual attempts to advanced persistent threats. The procedures and controls we use to monitor these threats and mitigate our exposure may not be sufficient to prevent cybersecurity incidents. The results of these incidents could include misstated financial data, theft of trade secrets or other intellectual property, liability for disclosure of confidential customer, supplier or employee information, increased costs arising from the implementation of additional security protective measures, litigation and reputational damage, which could materially adversely affect our financial condition, business or results of operations. Any remedial costs or other liabilities related to cybersecurity incidents may not be fully insured or indemnified by other means.
Additionally, security breaches could result in a violation of applicable U.S. and international privacy and other laws and subject us to governmental investigations and proceedings, which could result in our exposure to material civil or criminal liability. For example, the European Union adopted a new regulation that became effective in May 2018, called the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”). GDPR requires companies to meet new requirements regarding the handling of personal data, including its use, protection and the ability of persons whose data is stored to correct or delete such data about themselves. Similarly, the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”), which took effect on January 1, 2020, imposes additional obligations on businesses to make new disclosures about data collection, use, and sharing practices and affords consumers new rights with respect to their data. It also provides a new private right of action for data breaches. Failure to meet GDPR and CCPA requirements could result in financial penalties.
Our vendors’ and commercial partners’ information technology systems may fail or suffer security breaches, which could result in a material disruption of our operations.
Despite the implementation of security measures, the information technology systems of our vendors or commercial partners are vulnerable to damage from computer viruses, unauthorized access, natural disasters, and electrical failures. Such events could cause disruptions in our operations. To the extent that any disruption or security breach were to result in a loss of, or damage to, our data, or inappropriate disclosure of confidential or propriety information, we could be subject to litigation and reputational harm, which could materially adversely affect our financial condition, business or results of operations.
We retain certain personal information about individuals and are subject to various privacy and consumer protection laws.
We collect personal information for various purposes and through various methods, including from third parties and directly from consumers through our website, at events and sales, and via telephone and email. Certain individuals may object to the processing of this data, request the deletion of this data, or opt out of the sharing of this data, any of which may negatively impact our ability to provide effective customer service or otherwise impact our operations. Collection and use of personal information in conducting our business may be subject to federal and/or state laws and regulations in the United States and foreign jurisdictions including, in particular, various jurisdictions in Europe, and such laws and regulations may restrict our processing of such personal information and may hinder our ability to attract new customers or market to existing customers. We may incur significant expenses to comply with privacy, consumer protection, and security standards and protocols imposed by law, regulation, industry standards or contractual obligations.
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Our vendors and any potential commercial partners may engage in misconduct or other improper activities, including non-compliance with regulatory standards and requirements.
Our vendors and any potential commercial partners expose us to the risk of fraud or other misconduct. Misconduct by these parties could include intentional, reckless, and/or negligent conduct or disclosure of unauthorized activities to us that violate federal and/or state data privacy, security, and consumer protection laws and regulations in the United States and abroad. Such misconduct could result in regulatory sanctions and cause serious harm to our reputation.
Our operations may be impaired if our information technology systems fail to perform adequately or if they are the subject of a data breach or cyber-attack.
Information technology systems are critically important to operating our business. We rely on information technology systems to manage business data, communications, supply chain, order entry and fulfillment, and other business processes. The failure of any of the information technology systems to perform as anticipated could disrupt our business and could result in transaction errors, processing inefficiencies and the loss of sales and customers, which could materially adversely affect our business, financial condition, or results of operations.
We have grown and may continue to grow in the future through acquisitions. Growth by acquisitions involves risks and we may not be able to effectively integrate businesses we acquire or we may not be able to identify or consummate any future acquisitions on favorable terms, or at all.
We intend to selectively evaluate additional acquisitions in the future. Any acquisitions that we might make are subject to various risks and uncertainties and could have a negative impact on our business, financial condition or results of operations. These risks include the inability to integrate effectively the operations, products, technologies and personnel of the acquired companies (some of which may be spread out in different geographic regions), the inability to achieve anticipated cost savings or operating synergies, the earn-outs we may contractually obligate ourselves to pay, and the risk we may not be able to effectively manage our operations at an increased scale of operations resulting from such acquisitions. In the event we do complete acquisitions in the future, such acquisitions could affect our cash flows and net income as we expend funds, increase indebtedness and incur additional expenses in connection with pursuing acquisitions. We may also issue shares of our common stock or other securities from time to time as consideration for future acquisitions and investments. We may not be able to identify or consummate any future acquisitions on favorable terms, or at all.
Our operating results are subject to quarterly variations in our sales, which could make our operating results difficult to predict and could adversely affect the price of our common stock.
We have experienced, and expect to continue to experience, substantial quarterly variations in our sales and net income. Our quarterly results of operations fluctuate, in some cases significantly, as a result of a variety of other factors, including, among other things:
the timing of new product releases or other significant announcements by us or our competitors;
new advertising initiatives;
fluctuations in raw materials and component costs; and
changes in our practices with respect to building inventory.
As a result of these quarterly fluctuations, comparisons of our operating results between different quarters within a single year are not necessarily meaningful and may not be accurate indicators of our future performance. Any future quarterly fluctuations that we report may differ from the expectations of market analysts and investors, which could cause the price of our common stock to fluctuate significantly. We also believe that the seasonal nature of our business may have been overshadowed throughout the past few years due to the rapid growth in sales we have experienced during those periods.
Our beliefs regarding the future growth of the performance-defining product market are supported by qualitative data and limited sources and may not be reliable. A reduction or lack of continued growth in the popularity of high-end bikes, bikes or powered vehicles or in the number of consumers who are willing to pay premium prices for well-designed, performance-oriented equipment in the markets in which we sell our products could adversely affect our product sales and profits, financial condition or results of operations.
We generate virtually all of our revenues from sales of performance-defining products. Our beliefs regarding the outlook of the performance-defining product market come from qualitative data and limited sources, which may not be reliable. If our beliefs regarding the opportunities in the market for our products are incorrect or the number of consumers who we believe are willing to pay premium prices for well-designed, performance-oriented equipment in the markets in which we sell our products does not increase, or declines, we may fail to achieve future growth and our business, financial condition or results of operations could be negatively affected.
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Failure of our internal control over financial reporting could adversely affect our business and financial results.
Our management is responsible for establishing and maintaining effective internal control over financial reporting under Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, as amended (the "Sarbanes-Oxley Act"). Internal control over financial reporting is a process to provide reasonable assurance regarding the reliability of financial reporting for external purposes in accordance with GAAP. Because of its inherent limitations, internal control over financial reporting is not intended to provide absolute assurance that we would prevent or detect a misstatement of our financial statements or fraud. Any failure to maintain an effective system of internal control over financial reporting could limit our ability to report our financial results accurately and timely or to detect and prevent fraud. The identification of a material weakness could indicate a lack of controls adequate to generate accurate financial statements that, in turn, could cause a loss of investor confidence and decline in the market price of our common stock. We cannot assure you that we will be able to timely remediate any material weaknesses that may be identified in future periods or maintain all of the controls necessary for continued compliance. Likewise, we cannot assure you that we will be able to retain sufficient skilled finance and accounting personnel, especially in light of the increased demand for such personnel among publicly traded companies.
Risks related to ownership of our common stock
The trading price of our common stock may be volatile, and you might not be able to sell your shares at or above the price you pay for the shares.
The trading price of our common stock could be volatile, and you could lose all or part of your investment in our common stock. Since our IPO in 2013, our stock price has fluctuated between $86.91 and $13.35 per share and such volatility may continue in the future. Factors affecting the trading price of our common stock could include:
variations in our operating results or those of our competitors;
new product or other significant announcements by us or our competitors;
changes in our product mix;
changes in consumer preferences;
fluctuations in currency exchange rates;
the gain or loss of significant customers;
recruitment or departure of key personnel;
changes in the estimates of our operating results or changes in recommendations by any securities analysts that elect to follow our common stock;
changes in general economic conditions as well as conditions affecting our industry in particular; and
sales of our common stock by us, our significant stockholders or our directors or executive officers.
In addition, in recent years, the stock market has experienced significant price fluctuations. Fluctuations in the stock market generally or with respect to companies in our industry could cause the trading price of our common stock to fluctuate for reasons unrelated to our business, operating results or financial condition. Further, some companies that have had volatile market prices for their securities have had securities class actions filed against them. A lawsuit filed against us, regardless of its merits or outcome, could cause us to incur substantial costs and could divert management’s attention.
Future issuances and sales of our shares, or the perception that such sales may occur, could cause our stock price to decline.
The issuance of additional shares of our common stock could dilute the ownership interest of our common stockholders and could depress the market price of shares of our common stock.
Our Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation authorizes us to issue 90,000,000 shares of common stock, 38,558,515 of which shares were outstanding as of January 3, 2020. In the future, we may issue additional shares of common stock or other equity or debt securities convertible into common stock in connection with financings, acquisitions, registration statements or otherwise.
After our IPO in 2013, we filed a registration statement under the Securities Act to register shares of our common stock that we may issue under our equity plans. As a result, all such shares can be freely sold in the public market upon issuance, subject to any vesting or contractual lock-up agreements.
We also have a number of institutional stockholders that own significant blocks of our common stock. If one or more of these stockholders were to sell large portions of their holdings in a relatively short time, for liquidity or other reasons, the prevailing price of shares of our common stock could be negatively affected.
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If securities or industry analysts do not publish research or publish unfavorable research about our business, our stock price and trading volume could decline.
The trading market for our common stock depends in part on the research and reports that securities or industry analysts publish about our business or us. If one or more of the analysts who covers us downgrades our stock or publishes unfavorable research about our business or our industry, our stock price would likely decline. If one or more of these analysts ceases coverage of our Company or fails to publish reports on us regularly, demand for our stock could decrease, which could cause our stock price and trading volume to decline.
Anti-takeover provisions in our charter documents and Delaware law could discourage, delay or prevent a change in control of our Company.
Our Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation and Amended and Restated Bylaws (together, our "Charter Documents"), as well as Delaware law, contain provisions that may discourage, delay or prevent a change in our management or control over us that stockholders may consider favorable. Among other things, these provisions:
authorize the issuance of "blank check" preferred stock that could be issued by our Board of Directors to discourage a takeover attempt;
establish a classified Board of Directors, as a result of which the successors to the directors whose terms have expired will be elected to serve from the time of election and qualification until the third annual meeting following their election;
require that directors be removed from office only for cause;
provide that vacancies on our Board of Directors, including newly created directorships, may be filled only by a majority vote of directors then in office;
provide that no action be taken by stockholders by written consent;
provide that special meetings of our stockholders may be called only by our Board of Directors, our Chairperson of the Board of Directors, our Lead Director (if we do not have a Chairperson or the Chairperson is disabled), our Chief Executive Officer or our President (in the absence of a Chief Executive Officer);
require supermajority stockholder voting for our stockholders to effect certain amendments to our Charter Documents; and
establish advance notice requirements for nominations for elections to our Board of Directors or for proposing other matters that can be acted upon by stockholders at stockholder meetings.
In addition, we are subject to Section 203 of the General Corporation Law of the State of Delaware ("DGCL"), which generally prohibits a Delaware corporation from engaging in a broad range of business combinations with a stockholder owning 15% or more of such corporation’s outstanding voting stock for a period of three years following the date on which such stockholder became an "interested" stockholder. In order for us to consummate a business combination with an interested stockholder within three years of the date on which the stockholder became interested, either: (i) the business combination or the transaction that resulted in the stockholder becoming interested must be approved by our Board of Directors prior to the date the stockholder became interested; (ii) the interested stockholder must own at least 85% of our outstanding voting stock at the time the transaction commences (excluding voting stock owned by directors who are also officers and certain employee stock plans); or (iii) the business combination must be approved by our Board of Directors and authorized by at least two-thirds of our stockholders (excluding the interested stockholder) at a special or annual meeting (not by written consent). This provision could have the effect of delaying or preventing a change in control, whether or not it is desired by or beneficial to our stockholders. Any delay or prevention of a change in control transaction or changes in our Board of Directors and management could deter potential acquirers or prevent the completion of a transaction in which our stockholders could receive a substantial premium over the then-current market price for their shares of our common stock.
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Our Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation designates the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware as the sole and exclusive forum for certain types of actions and proceedings that may be initiated by our stockholders, which could limit our stockholders’ ability to obtain a favorable judicial forum for disputes with us or our directors, officers or other employees.
Our Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation provides that, with certain limited exceptions, unless we consent in writing to the selection of an alternative forum, the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware will be the sole and exclusive forum for: (i) any derivative action or proceeding brought on our behalf; (ii) any action asserting a claim of breach of fiduciary duty owed by any director, officer or other employee of our Company owed to us or our stockholders; (iii) any action asserting a claim against us arising pursuant to any provision of the DGCL or our Charter Documents; (iv) any action to interpret, apply, enforce or determine the validity of our Charter Documents; or (v) any action asserting a claim governed by the internal affairs doctrine. Any person or entity purchasing or otherwise acquiring any interest in shares of our capital stock is deemed to have received notice of and consented to the foregoing provisions. This choice of forum provision may limit a stockholder’s ability to bring a claim in a judicial forum that it finds favorable for disputes with us or our directors, officers or other employees, which may discourage such lawsuits against us and our directors, officers and employees. Alternatively, if a court were to find this choice of forum provision inapplicable to, or unenforceable in respect of, one or more of the specified types of actions or proceedings, we may incur additional costs associated with resolving such matters in other jurisdictions, which could adversely affect our business, financial condition or results of operations.
ITEM 1B. UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS
None.
ITEM 2. PROPERTIES
At January 3, 2020, we occupied the following square footage by location:
United StatesOther CountriesTotal
Leased facilities559,086  197,788  756,874  
Owned facilities704,884  44,347  749,231  
Total1,263,970  242,135  1,506,105  
During 2018, we relocated our corporate headquarters from Scotts Valley, California to our offices in Braselton, Georgia. We are also currently constructing an approximately 336,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility in Hall County, Georgia to diversify our manufacturing platform and provide additional long-term capacity to support growth in our Powered Vehicles Group. The first phase of the Hall County, Georgia project is expected to be completed late in the second quarter of 2020 and will be used for manufacturing, warehousing, distribution and office space.
Certain administrative, research and development and manufacturing operations are located in California. We also manufacture in the U.S. States of Michigan and Indiana, and internationally in Taiwan and Canada, and maintain sales and service offices in the U.S. and Europe.
We believe that our properties are generally suitable to meet our needs for the foreseeable future. In addition, to the extent we require additional space in the future, we believe that it would be readily available on commercially reasonable terms.
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ITEM 3. LEGAL PROCEEDINGS
A lawsuit was filed on December 17, 2015 by SRAM Corporation (“SRAM”) in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, against the Company’s wholly-owned subsidiary, RFE Canada Holding Corp. (“RFE Canada”). The lawsuit alleges patent infringement of U.S. Patent number 9,182,027 ("'027 Patent") and violation of the Lanham Act. SRAM filed a second lawsuit in the same court against RFE Canada on May 16, 2016, alleging patent infringement of U.S Patent number 9,291,250 ("'250 Patent"). The Company believes that the lawsuits are without merit and intends vigorously to defend itself. As such, the Company has filed, before the U. S. Patent and Trademark Appeals Board ("PTAB"), for Interparties Reviews ("IPR") of the '027 Patent and separately the same for the '250 Patent. In April 2018, the PTAB issued opinions in the ‘027 Patent petition cases stating that the Company has not shown the claims of the ‘027 Patent to be obvious. Regarding the PTAB ‘027 opinions, the Company has filed an Appeal to the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The CAFC found in favor of the Company and has vacated and remanded all of the PTAB findings with the exception of their finding that the ‘027 patent met the prima facia test for obviousness, which was affirmed. SRAM has appealed to the CAFC to rehear the case en banc and that appeal is pending. The PTAB has issued an opinion in the ‘250 Patent petition case stating that the Company has not shown the claims of the ‘250 Patent to be obvious.
In a separate action, the Company filed a lawsuit on January 29, 2016 in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California against SRAM. That lawsuit alleges SRAM’s infringement of two separate Company owned patents, specifically U.S. Patent numbers 6,135,434 and 6,557,674. The Company filed a second lawsuit on July 1, 2016 in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California against SRAM alleging infringement of the Company’s U.S. Patent numbers 8,226,172 and 8,974,009. These lawsuits have been moved to U.S. District Court, District of Colorado and are otherwise proceeding. The U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, has lifted the stay of the SRAM lawsuits against the Company. The Company filed and SRAM filed lawsuits are now moving forward in the respective courts.
Due to the inherent uncertainties of litigation, the Company is not able to predict either the outcome or a range of reasonably possible losses, if any, at this time. Accordingly, no amounts have been recorded in the consolidated financial statements for the settlement of these matters. Were an unfavorable ruling to occur, or if factors indicate that a loss is probable and reasonably estimable, the Company's business, financial condition or results of operations could be materially and adversely affected. The Company is involved in other legal matters that arise in the ordinary course of business. Based on information currently available, management does not believe that the ultimate resolution of these matters will have a material adverse effect on the Company's financial condition, results of operations or cash flows.
ITEM 4. MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURES
Not applicable.
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PART II
ITEM 5. MARKET FOR REGISTRANT’S COMMON EQUITY, RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS AND ISSUER PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES
Market Information
Our common stock has been listed on the NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol "FOXF" since August 8, 2013. Our IPO was priced at $15.00 per share on August 8, 2013. Prior to that date, there was no public trading market for our common stock.
The following table sets forth, for the periods indicated, the high and low sales prices per share of our common stock as reported on the NASDAQ Global Select Market.
 High  Low
Year Ending December 28, 2018
Quarter ended March 30, 2018$40.20  $34.35  
Quarter ended June 29, 201847.40  33.25  
Quarter ended September 28, 201872.10  47.75  
Quarter ended December 28, 201875.17  50.66  
Year Ending January 3, 2020
Quarter ended March 29, 2019$71.70  $54.21  
Quarter ended June 28, 201983.74  65.07  
Quarter ended September 27, 201986.91  59.63  
Quarter ended January 3, 202071.07  59.01  
On February 28, 2020, the closing price per share of our common stock as reported on the NASDAQ Global Select Market was $63.40 per share.
Stockholders
As of February 28, 2020, there were approximately six holders of record of our common stock. The actual number of stockholders is greater than this number of record holders, and includes stockholders who are beneficial owners, but whose shares are held in street name by brokers and other nominees. This number of holders of record also does not include stockholders whose shares may be held in trust by other entities.
Dividend Policy
We did not declare or pay any dividends in the years ended January 3, 2020 and December 28, 2018. In addition, our Credit Facility contains covenants limiting our ability to pay dividends to our stockholders. See "Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations - Liquidity and Capital Resources - Former Second Amended and Restated Credit Facility and New Credit Facility" for additional information. While we currently intend to reinvest our earnings, any future determination to declare cash dividends will be made at the discretion of our Board of Directors, subject to applicable laws, and will depend on a number of factors, including our financial condition, results of operations, capital requirements, contractual restrictions, general business conditions and any other factors that our Board of Directors may deem relevant. We do not intend to pay dividends in the foreseeable future.
Equity Compensation Plan Information
For equity compensation plan information, refer to Item 12. "Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters" of this Annual Report on Form 10-K.
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Performance Graph
The following graph shows a comparison from August 8, 2013 (the date our common stock commenced trading on the NASDAQ) through January 3, 2020 of the total cumulative return of our common stock with the total cumulative return of the NASDAQ Composite Index (the "NASDAQ Composite") and S&P 500 Index ("S&P 500"). The figures represented below assume an investment of $100 in our common stock at the closing price of $18.61 on August 8, 2013 and in the NASDAQ Composite and S&P 500. Data for the NASDAQ Composite and S&P 500 assume reinvestment of dividends. The comparisons in the graph are historical and are not intended to forecast or be indicative of possible future performance of our common stock.
foxf-20200103_g2.jpg
This performance graph shall not be deemed to be "soliciting material" or "filed" or incorporated by reference in future filings with the SEC, or subject to the liabilities of Section 18 of the Exchange Act except as shall be expressly set forth by specific reference in such filing.
Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
The table below sets forth information regarding repurchases of our common stock by us during the quarter ended January 3, 2020:
PeriodTotal Number of Shares Purchased (1)Weighted Average Price Paid per ShareTotal Number of Shares Purchased as Part of Publicly Announced Plans or Programs
9/28 - 11/11,554  $60.94  —  
11/2 - 11/29652  66.82  —  
11/30 - 1/3—  —  —  
Total2,206  $62.68  —  
(1) Includes shares acquired from holders of restricted stock unit awards and option exercises to satisfy tax withholding obligations.

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ITEM 6. SELECTED FINANCIAL DATA
The following selected consolidated financial and other data should be read in conjunction with, and are qualified by reference to, Item 7 "Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" and our audited consolidated financial statements and the accompanying notes included elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. The consolidated statements of income data for the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017, and the consolidated balance sheet data as of January 3, 2020 and December 28, 2018 are derived from the audited consolidated financial statements that are included elsewhere in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. We have included, in our opinion, all adjustments, consisting only of normal recurring adjustments that we consider necessary for a fair presentation of the financial information set forth in those statements. The consolidated statements of income data for the years ended December 30, 2016 and December 31, 2015 as well as the consolidated balance sheet data as of December 29, 2017, December 30, 2016 and December 31, 2015, are derived from audited consolidated financial statements that are not included in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. Our historical results are not necessarily indicative of the results to be expected in the future. 
Consolidated Statement of Income Data:
For the fiscal years ended
(in thousands, except per share data)
(1)20192018201720162015
Sales$751,020  $619,225  $475,633  $403,077  $366,798  
Cost of sales (2)508,285  413,729  321,143  276,689  254,756  
Gross profit242,735  205,496  154,490  126,388  112,042  
Operating expenses:
Sales and marketing (2)42,794  37,296  27,905  25,796  23,182  
Research and development (2)31,789  25,847  20,178  18,459  17,001  
General and administrative (2) 48,999  41,756  34,933  27,693  21,053  
Amortization of purchased intangibles6,344  6,065  2,986  2,988  8,525  
Fair value adjustment of contingent consideration and acquisition-related compensation—  —  1,447  5,911  6,937  
Total operating expenses129,926  110,964  87,449  80,847  76,698  
Income from operations112,809  94,532  67,041  45,541  35,344  
Other expense, net:   
Interest expense3,173  3,059  2,396  2,088  1,549  
Other expense (income), net1,067  583  360  363  (449) 
Total other expense, net4,240  3,642  2,756  2,451  1,100  
Income before income taxes108,569  90,890  64,285  43,090  34,244  
Provision for income taxes14,099  5,523  21,102  7,415  9,290  
Net income94,470  85,367  43,183  35,675  24,954  
Less: net income attributable to non-controlling interest1,437  1,327  55  —  —  
Net income attributable to FOX stockholders$93,033  $84,040  $43,128  $35,675  $24,954  
Earnings per share:   
Basic$2.43  $2.22  $1.15  $0.97  $0.67  
Diluted$2.38  $2.16  $1.11  $0.94  $0.66  
Weighted average shares used to compute earnings per share:   
Basic38,333  37,805  37,373  36,799  36,989  
Diluted39,155  38,956  38,738  37,801  37,894  
(1) The Company operates on a 52 to 53 week fiscal calendar. The 2019 fiscal year, which ended on January 3, 2020, had 53 weeks and the 2018, 2017, 2016 and 2015 fiscal years, which ended on December 28, 2018, December 29, 2017, December 30, 2016 and December 31, 2015, each had 52 weeks, respectively.

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(2) Includes stock-based compensation as follows:
For the fiscal years ended
(in thousands)20192018201720162015
Cost of sales$802  $482  $429  $139  $82  
Sales and marketing506  556  587  598  430  
Research and development721  640  442  357  178  
General and administrative4,835  5,644  7,269  5,129  4,217  
Total$6,864  $7,322  $8,727  $6,223  $4,907  

Consolidated Balance Sheet Data:
For the fiscal years ended
(in thousands)20192018201720162015
Cash and cash equivalents$43,736  $27,958  $35,947  $35,280  $6,944  
Inventory128,505  107,140  84,841  71,243  68,202  
Working capital190,000  135,162  116,702  95,876  57,971  
Property, plant and equipment, net108,379  64,788  43,636  32,262  26,094  
Total assets609,316  485,254  428,286  335,600  277,716  
Total debt, including current portion (1)68,000  59,426  98,643  66,683  47,881  
Total stockholders’ equity$422,200  $321,205  $234,835  $184,937  $152,260  
(1) In 2014, in connection with our acquisitions, we entered into amendments to our credit facility, borrowing $80.0 million under a secured term loan. In 2016, we entered into the Second Amended and Restated Credit Facility, with a refinanced term loan principal balance of $75.0 million. We paid off the Second Amended and Restated Credit Facility in June 2019 upon entering into a new Credit Facility with Bank of America, N.A. ("Bank of America").

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ITEM 7. MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
The following discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations should be read in conjunction with the section titled "Selected Financial Data" and the consolidated financial statements and related notes thereto included elsewhere in this Annual Report in Form 10-K. This discussion contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Our actual results could differ materially from those discussed below. You should review the "Risk Factors" and "Special Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements" sections of this Annual Report on Form 10-K for a discussion of important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results described in or implied by the forward-looking statements contained in the following discussion and analysis.
Overview
We are a designer, manufacturer and marketer of performance-defining component products used primarily on bikes, side-by-side vehicles, or Side-by-Sides, on-road and off-road vehicles and trucks, all-terrain vehicles or ATVs, snowmobiles, specialty vehicles and applications, motorcycles and commercial trucks. Virtually all of our revenues were from our product sales; miscellaneous sources of revenue such as royalty income and service related repair work and the associated sale of parts represented less than 1% of our sales in each of the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017.
We have determined that we operate in one reportable segment, which is the manufacturing, sale and service of performance-defining products. Our products fall into the following two categories:
powered vehicles, including Side-by-Sides, certain on-road vehicles with off-road capabilities, off-road vehicles and trucks, ATVs, snowmobiles, specialty vehicles and applications, motorcycles, and commercial trucks; and
specialty sports products, which consist primarily of bike suspension and component products.
In each of the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017, approximately 60%, 54% and 48%, respectively, of our sales were attributable to sales of products for powered vehicles and approximately 40%, 46% and 52%, respectively, of our sales were attributable to sales of specialty sports products.
Our North American sales totaled $502.3 million, $388.7 million and $280.9 million, or 67%, 63% and 59% of our total sales in fiscal years 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively. Our international sales totaled $248.8 million, $230.5 million and $194.8 million, or 33%, 37% and 41% of our total sales in fiscal years 2019, 2018 and 2017, respectively. Sales attributable to countries outside the United States are based on shipment location. Our international sales, however, do not necessarily reflect the location of the end users of our products as many of our products are incorporated into bikes that are assembled at international locations and then shipped back to the United States. We estimate, based on our internal projections, that approximately one-third of the end users of our products are located outside the United States.
Opportunities, challenges and risks
We intend to focus on generating sales of our performance-defining products through OEMs and in the aftermarket channel. To do this, we intend to continue to develop and introduce new and innovative products in our current end-markets and we intend to selectively develop products for applications and end-markets in which we do not currently participate. Currently, the majority of our sales are dependent on the demand for performance-defining products.
Our aftermarket distribution network currently consists of more than 5,000 retail dealers and distributors worldwide. To further penetrate the aftermarket channel, we intend to selectively add additional dealers and distributors in certain geographic markets, expand our internal sales force and strategically increase the number of aftermarket specific products and services that we offer for existing vehicle platforms. In addition, we believe international expansion represents a significant opportunity for us and we intend to selectively increase infrastructure investments and focus on identified geographic regions.
As a supplier to OEM customers, we are largely dependent on the success of the business of our OEM customers. Model year changes by our OEM customers may adversely impact our sales or cause our sales to vary from quarter to quarter. Losses in market share or a decline in the overall market of our OEM customers or the discontinuance by our OEM customers of their products that incorporate our products could negatively impact our business and our results of operations.
During 2018, we moved our corporate headquarters from Scotts Valley, California to our offices in Braselton, Georgia. We are also currently constructing an approximately 336,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility in Hall County, Georgia to diversify our manufacturing platform and provide additional long-term capacity to support growth in our Powered Vehicles Group. The first phase of the Hall County, Georgia project is expected to be completed late in the second quarter of 2020 and will be used for manufacturing, warehousing, distribution and office space. Our Scotts Valley, California location will remain an essential shared services facility housing certain corporate functions.
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In addition, we relocated our aftermarket bike products distribution, sales and service operations from Watsonville and Scotts Valley, California to Reno, Nevada to better serve our customers.
From time to time, we have experienced, and may continue to experience, warranty costs and claims relating to our products. In the ordinary course of business, we reserve for such costs and claims in our financial statements. There is a risk, however, that in the future we will experience higher than expected warranty costs and claims, as well as other related costs.
We intend to evaluate selective potential acquisition opportunities for performance-defining products and technologies that we believe will help us extend our performance-defining product platform. Any acquisitions that we might make are subject to various risks and uncertainties and could have a negative impact on our results of operations. In addition, we may contractually obligate ourselves to contingent consideration or acquisition related compensation payments in conjunction with such acquisitions, which could have a negative impact on our cash flow and results of operations. See Item 7. "Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations - Liquidity and Capital Resources - Contractual obligations and commitments" for additional information.
Basis of presentation
Sales are primarily comprised of:
Sales from:
Product sales: consist of sales of performance-defining products and systems to customers worldwide. Sales are measured based on the consideration specified in a contract with a customer. We recognize sales when a performance obligation is satisfied by transferring control of a product to a customer, generally at the time of shipment. Contracts are generally in the form of purchase orders and are governed by standard terms and conditions. For larger OEMs, we may also enter into master agreements; and
Shipping and handling fees: consists of shipping and handling fees billed to customers.
Net of:
Rebates: consists of incentives we provide to customers based on sales of eligible products; and
Sales returns allowances: consists of an estimate of our sales returns. This allowance is based upon estimates of the projected returns in future periods based on our experience with returns recorded in previous periods. Sales returns have not been significant to date.
We attribute our past growth in sales predominantly to continued higher demand for on and off-road suspension products, acquisitions, and the success of our current product lines including new products within those lines.
Cost of sales
The cost of sales includes the cost of purchased parts and manufactured products (raw materials consumed, the cost to procure materials, labor costs, including wages, and employee benefits, and factory overhead to produce finished good products), including:
the costs to inspect and repair products;
shipping costs associated with inbound freight. These costs are capitalized as part of inventory and included in cost of sales as the inventory is sold;
royalty expenses, including payments to certain parties for our use of licensed technology incorporated into our products;
freight expenses incurred for certain shipments to customers;
warranty costs associated with the repair or replacement of products under warranty; and
reductions in the cost of inventory to its net realizable value, if required, for estimated excess, obsolescence or impaired balances.
Gross profit/gross margin
Our gross profit equals our sales minus cost of sales. Our gross margin measures our gross profit as a percentage of sales.
Our gross margins fluctuate based on production volumes, product, customer and channel mix and overall supply chain and manufacturing efficiencies. Generally, we earn higher gross margins on our products sold to the aftermarket channel.
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Operating expenses
Our operating expenses consist of the following:
sales and marketing;
research and development;
general and administrative;
amortization of purchased intangibles; and
fair value adjustment of contingent consideration and acquisition-related compensation.
Our sales and marketing expenses include costs related to our sales, customer service and marketing personnel, including their wages, employee benefits and related stock-based compensation, and occupancy related expenses. Other significant sales and marketing expenses include race support and sponsorships of events and athletes, advertising and promotions related to trade shows, travel and entertainment, promotional materials and products and our sales office costs.
Our research and development expenses consist primarily of salaries and personnel costs, including wages, employee benefits and related stock-based compensation for our engineering, research and development teams, occupancy related expenses, fees for third party consultants, service fees, and expenses for prototype tooling and materials, travel, and supplies. We expense research and development costs as incurred and such costs are included as research and development expenses on our consolidated statements of income.
Our general and administrative expenses include costs related to our executive, finance, information technology, business development, human resources and administrative personnel, including wages, employee benefits and related stock-based compensation expenses. We record professional and contract service expenses, occupancy related expenses associated with corporate locations and equipment, and legal expenses in general and administrative expenses.
Our amortization of purchased intangibles includes amortization over their respective useful lives of our purchased intangible assets, such as customer lists and our core technology. Our intangible assets are evaluated for impairment whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying value of the assets may not be fully recoverable. No impairments of intangible assets were identified in the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017.
Our fair value adjustments of contingent consideration and acquisition-related compensation related primarily to adjustments to our contingent consideration liability arising from the acquisition of Sport Truck as well as accruals for earn-outs related to our acquisition of Race Face/Easton. Our contingent consideration and acquisition-related compensation for the Sport Truck and Race Face/Easton acquisitions have been fully recognized and paid as of January 3, 2020.
Income from operations
We define income from operations as gross profit less our operating expenses. We use income from operations as an indicator of the profitability of our business and our ability to manage costs.
Other expense, net
Other expense, net consists of interest expense and other expense, net. Interest expense consists of interest charged to us under our credit facility.
Other expense, net consists of foreign currency transaction gains and losses, gains and losses on the disposal of fixed assets, and other miscellaneous items.
 Income taxes
We are subject to income taxes in the United States (federal and state) and various other foreign jurisdictions. Our effective tax rate could be affected by numerous factors such as change in our business operations, acquisitions, investments, entry into new businesses and geographies, intercompany transactions, the relative amount of our foreign earnings, losses incurred in jurisdictions for which we are not able to realize related tax benefits, changes in our deferred tax assets and liabilities and their valuation, changes in the laws, regulations, administrative practices, principles, and interpretations related to tax, including changes to the global tax framework and other laws and accounting rules in various jurisdictions.
For the years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018 and December 29, 2017, we had effective tax rates of 13.0%, 6.1% and 32.8%, respectively. We have concluded certain elements of our international restructuring in response to the Tax Cuts Jobs Act (the "TCJA"), and expect that certain other changes will be carried out over a number of years.
The TCJA significantly changed how the U.S. taxes corporations. As a result of the enactment of the TCJA in December 2017, our unremitted earnings became subject to a transition tax, which we paid with existing foreign tax credits. We therefore no longer consider our unremitted earnings to be permanently reinvested.
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As of January 3, 2020, our deferred tax assets included foreign tax credits of approximately $33.3 million, which begin to expire in 2025 unless utilized.
Valuation allowances are established when necessary to reduce deferred tax assets to the amount expected to be realized. As of January 3, 2020, we recorded a valuation allowance of $6.5 million, as we anticipate that the TCJA will partially limit our ability to utilize our foreign tax credits. In the future, our effective tax rate could vary as we update our assessment of valuation allowances for our deferred tax assets, including those associated with credit carryforwards. It is reasonably possible that we could record a material adjustment to the valuation allowance in the next twelve months as we assess the progress and outcome of our restructuring activities.
We also have federal and state research credit carryforwards of approximately $2.8 million and $2.9 million, respectively. The federal research credits will begin to expire in 2036 unless utilized; the state research credits do not expire.
Stock-based compensation gives rise to deferred tax assets to the extent of the compensation expense recognized on non-qualified stock options that have not been exercised or expired and restricted stock awards that have not vested. As of January 3, 2020, our deferred tax assets included $1.0 million associated with stock-based compensation expense. We adopted ASU 2016-09, Improvements to Employee Share-Based Payment Accounting in 2016, and as a result, record the difference between the deferred tax asset and the actual tax deduction for stock-based compensation as a component of our income tax expense. Prior to adoption, such differences were recorded as a component of equity. In the three years ended January 3, 2020, and in future periods, our effective tax rate will vary based on such differences.
We are subject to examination of our income tax returns by the U.S. IRS and other tax authorities. We regularly assess the likelihood of adverse outcomes resulting from these examinations to determine the adequacy of our income tax liabilities and expense. Should actual events or results differ from our current expectations, charges or credits to our income tax expense may become necessary. Any such adjustments could have a significant impact on our effective tax rate.
In 2018, we received a no change letter from the Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") related to the audit of our 2015 federal tax return. Additionally, we entered into a closing agreement with the IRS that resolved the uncertainty about the deductibility of amortization and depreciation arising from the Compass Group Diversified Holdings LLC's acquisition of us in 2008 (the "Compass Acquisition") for all open tax years. The favorable conclusion resulted in a decrease in the unrecognized tax benefits of $6.2 million, of which $5.6 million favorably impacted the effective tax rate. Including the reversal of the amounts presented as net of deferred tax assets and accrued interest and penalties, the favorable conclusion resulted in a benefit of $9.8 million to the provision for income tax for the year ended December 28, 2018. The deductibility of acquisition-related amortization and depreciation for state tax purposes remains uncertain.
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Results of operations
The table below summarizes our results of operations for the fiscal years ended January 3, 2020, December 28, 2018, and December 29, 2017:
For the fiscal years ended
January 3,December 28,December 29,
(in thousands)202020182017
Sales$751,020  $619,225  $475,633  
Cost of sales508,285  413,729  321,143  
Gross profit242,735  205,496  154,490  
Operating expenses:
Sales and marketing42,794  37,296  27,905  
Research and development31,789  25,847  20,178  
General and administrative48,999  41,756  34,933  
Amortization of purchased intangibles6,344  6,065  2,986  
Fair value adjustment of contingent consideration and acquisition-related compensation—  —  1,447  
Total operating expenses129,926  110,964  87,449  
Income from operations112,809  94,532  67,041  
Other expense, net:   
Interest expense3,173  3,059  2,396  
Other expense1,067  583  360  
Total other expense, net4,240  3,642  2,756  
Income before income taxes108,569  90,890  64,285  
Provision for income taxes14,099  5,523  21,102  
Net income94,470  85,367  43,183  
Less: net income attributable to non-controlling interest1,437  1,327  55  
Net income attributable to FOX stockholders$93,033  $84,040  $43,128  

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The following table sets forth statement of income data as a percentage of sales for the years indicated:
For the fiscal years ended
January 3,December 28,December 29,
202020182017
Sales100.0 %100.0 %100.0 %
Cost of sales67.7  66.8  67.5  
Gross profit32.3  33.2  32.5  
Operating expenses:
Sales and marketing5.7  6.0  5.9  
Research and development4.2  4.2  4.2  
General and administrative6.5  6.7  7.3  
Amortization of purchased intangibles0.8  1.0  0.6  
Fair value adjustment of contingent consideration and acquisition-related compensation—  —  0.3  
Total operating expenses17.3  17.9  18.4  
Income from operations15.0  15.3  14.1  
Other expense, net:
Interest expense0.4  0.5  0.5  
Other expense0.1  0.1  0.1  
Other expense, net0.6  0.6  0.6  
Income before income taxes14.5  14.7  13.5  
Provision for income taxes1.9  0.9  4.4  
Net income12.6  13.8  9.1  
Less: net income attributable to non-controlling interest0.2  0.2  0.1  
Net income attributable to FOX stockholders12.4 %13.6 %9.0 %
*Percentages may not foot due to rounding.
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Fiscal year ended January 3, 2020 compared to fiscal year ended December 28, 2018
Sales
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20192018Change ($)Change (%)
Sales$751.0  $619.2  $131.8  21.3 %
Sales for the year ended January 3, 2020 increased approximately $131.8 million, or 21.3%, compared to the year ended December 28, 2018. The sales increase reflects 33.8% growth in Powered Vehicle products as well as a 6.3% increase in Specialty Sports products for the year ended January 3, 2020 compared to the prior year. The increase in sales of Powered Vehicle product sales was primarily due to the continued success of our product lineup, particularly in the OEM channel, as well as the inclusion of Ridetech's results. The increase in Specialty Sports product sales reflects new product introductions and strong sell through with certain higher growth OEMs.
Cost of sales
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20192018Change ($)Change (%)
Cost of sales$508.3  $413.7  $94.6  22.9 %
Cost of sales for the year ended January 3, 2020 increased approximately $94.6 million, or 22.9%, compared to the year ended December 28, 2018. The increase in cost of sales was driven primarily by an increase in product sales, as well as certain business factors affecting gross margin, which are discussed below.
For the year ended January 3, 2020, our gross margin was 32.3% compared to 33.2% for the year ended December 28, 2018. The decrease in our gross profit margin was primarily due to a shift in customer and product mix as the Company's larger North American OEMs represented a higher portion of sales. Additionally, we incurred manufacturing and supply chain inefficiencies associated with a higher than anticipated increase in customer demand.
Operating expenses
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20192018Change ($)Change (%)
Operating expenses:
Sales and marketing$42.8  $37.3  $5.5  14.7 %
Research and development31.8  25.8  6.0  23.3 %
General and administrative49.0  41.8  7.2  17.2 %
Amortization of purchased intangibles6.3  6.1  0.2  3.3 %
Total operating expenses$129.9  $111.0  $18.9  17.0 %
Total operating expenses for the year ended January 3, 2020 increased approximately $18.9 million, or 17.0%, over the comparable period in 2018. When expressed as a percentage of sales, operating expenses decreased to 17.3% of sales for the year ended January 3, 2020 compared to 17.9% of sales in 2018.
Within operating expenses, our sales and marketing expense increased by approximately $5.5 million primarily due to wages and related expenses of $2.2 million, costs related to our recently acquired Ridetech subsidiary of $1.7 million, and various other promotional expenses to expand our marketing team and continue to grow our brand. Research and development expenses increased approximately $6.0 million primarily due to headcount investments of $4.6 million as we continue to pursue product innovation, facilities related costs and cost associated with Ridetech. General and administrative expenses increased approximately $7.2 million due to payroll related costs of $4.0 million, facility and depreciation expense of $2.4 million, costs associated with Ridetech of $0.6 million and various other items, partially offset by a decrease of $1.3 million in litigation expenses.
Amortization of purchased intangible assets for the year ended January 3, 2020 increased by approximately $0.2 million as compared to the year ended December 28, 2018, due to the amortization of Ridetech's intangible assets.
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Income from operations
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20192018Change ($)Change (%)
Income from operations$112.8  $94.5  $18.3  19.4 %
As a result of the factors discussed above, income from operations for the year ended January 3, 2020 increased approximately $18.3 million, or 19.4%, compared to income from operations in the same period in 2018.
Other expense, net
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20192018Change ($)Change (%)
Other expense, net:
Interest expense$3.2  $3.1  $0.1  3.2 %
Other expense, net1.0  0.5  0.5  100.0 %
Other expense, net$4.2  $3.6  $0.6  16.7 %
Other expense, net for the year ended January 3, 2020 increased by approximately $0.6 million to $4.2 million compared to $3.6 million for the year ended December 28, 2018. The increase in other expense, net is primarily due to a $0.5 million increase in foreign exchange losses in the year ended January 3, 2020.
Income taxes
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20192018Change ($)Change (%)
Provision for income taxes$14.1  $5.5  $8.6  156.4 %
Income tax expense for the year ended January 3, 2020 increased by approximately $8.6 million to $14.1 million compared to income tax expense of $5.5 million in the same period in 2018. The increase in expense resulted primarily from the non-recurring Compass Acquisition uncertain tax position which was reflected in 2018, partially offset by the benefit of U.S. foreign derived earnings and the benefit of excess deductions on stock-based compensation.
The effective tax rates were 13.0% and 6.1% for the years ended January 3, 2020 and December 28, 2018, respectively.
For the year ended January 3, 2020, the difference between our effective tax rate and the 21% federal statutory rate resulted primarily from the benefit of excess deductions on stock-based compensation, the benefit of a lower tax rate on U.S. foreign derived earnings, partially offset by non-deductible executive compensation and state taxes.
For the year ended December 28, 2018, the difference between our effective tax rate and the 21% federal statutory rate resulted primarily from the favorable result of the uncertain tax position related to the Compass Acquisition, the benefit of excess deductions on stock-based compensation, the benefit of a lower tax rate on U.S. foreign derived earnings, partially offset by non-deductible executive compensation and state taxes.
Net income
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20192018Change ($)Change (%)
Net income$94.5  $85.4  $9.1  10.7 %
As a result of the factors described above, our net income increased $9.1 million, or 10.7%, to $94.5 million in the year ended January 3, 2020 from $85.4 million for the same period in 2018.
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Fiscal year ended December 28, 2018 compared to fiscal year ended December 29, 2017
Sales
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20182017Change ($)Change (%)
Sales$619.2  $475.6  $143.6  30.2 %
Sales for the year ended December 28, 2018 increased approximately $143.6 million, or 30.2%, compared to the year ended December 29, 2017. The sales increase reflects 46.5% growth in Powered Vehicle products as well as a 14.9% increase in Specialty Sports products for the year ended December 28, 2018 compared to the prior year. The increase in sales of Powered Vehicle products was primarily due to continued higher demand for on and off-road suspension products, including increased OEM sales, as well as the inclusion of Tuscany's results. The increase in Specialty Sports product sales was primarily due to the success of our current bike product lines including new products within those lines.
Cost of sales
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20182017Change ($)Change (%)
Cost of sales$413.7  $321.1  $92.6  28.8 %
Cost of sales for the year ended December 28, 2018 increased approximately $92.6 million, or 28.8%, compared to the year ended December 29, 2017. The increase in cost of sales was driven primarily by an increase in product sales, as well as certain business factors affecting gross margin, which are discussed below.
For the year ended December 28, 2018, our gross margin was 33.2% compared to 32.5% for the year ended December 29, 2017. The increase in our gross profit margin was primarily attributable to increased operating leverage on higher volume and improved manufacturing efficiencies.
Operating expenses
For the fiscal years ended
(in millions)20182017Change ($)Change (%)
Operating expenses:
Sales and marketing$37.3  $27.9  $9.4  33.7 %
Research and development25.8  20.2  5.6  27.7 %
General and administrative41.8  34.9  6.9  19.8