FedEx issues second statement on NRA discount controversy

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - FedEx released a new, clarifying statement Tuesday after more national calls to boycott the shipping giant.

FedEx said Monday it would not remove the National Rifle Association from its list of associated organizations, which get shipping discounts.

Tuesday, the Memphis-based company released a new statement that began, " FedEx is aware there are some continuing concerns related to the NRA..." The statement went on to say the company has never provided any donations or sponsorships to the NRA.

FedEx goes on to say the pricing program that's the focus of the concerns is not for the NRA itself but rather small businesses and consumers that are part of the NRA. The company then pointed the finger at its competition saying that the NRA uses UPS to ship from its online store and not FedEx.

Trip Miller, a financial analyst in Memphis, said FedEx may take some heat for this current political debate, but ultimately it won't affect the company's bottom line.

"I think in the short run it's a news story and in the long run it doesn't materially affect FedEx," Miller said.

Miller said the lion's share of FedEx's profits come from business to business shipping, which he said is less likely to be affected by public outcry.

Still celebrities like Debra Messing, who plays Grace on NBC's Will & Grace, are calling for a FedEx boycott on March 1st.

FedEx did not offer any additional comment on the planned boycott, nor did the company agree to answer any questions about the two released statements.

UPS, which FedEx mentioned in their statement Tuesday, said it does have a contractual deal with the NRA to ship merchandise from the organization's online store, but the company said it has never offered any discount to NRA members.

The NRA has not commented on the proposed boycott.

UPS's full statement can be read below:

"UPS serves 8 million business entities worldwide as their shipping provider.  Shipping decisions are made based on quality of service and pricing.  We have not been a sponsor of the NRA, nor has UPS offered a special discount program to NRA members.  UPS has a contractual relationship with many of these entities to transport merchandise purchased through their online store.

FedEx's full updated statement can be read below:

"FedEx is aware there are some continuing concerns related to the NRA, and we want to provide important, clarifying facts.

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