His name may not be as familiar as it should, considering he's the founder of one of the most recognized distributors in the firearms industry, AmChar. But Tony DiChario has made a mark in the firearms and ammunition distribution industry.
From a young age, Tony would spend time with his father, a great hunter and fisherman in his own right, watching American Sportsman. From spending time with his dad watching American Sportsman and accompanying him on hunting and fishing trips, this spawned a desire to work in the industry. Tony was very curious about mechanical things. Like most kids, he liked taking things apart and figuring out how they worked. Unlike most kids, Tony learned how to put those things back together. At the age of 12 and with his proximity to firearms, he began learning how they worked by taking them apart, putting them back together, and making repairs.
The time Tony spent with his dad hunting and fishing exposed him to guns and ammunition and planted the seed to get into this industry one day. Tony's dad opened a small bait and tackle shop, which further exposed him to this industry and increased his desire to do something relating to guns, ammunition, and everything else outdoor-related.
In 1967, at the age of 19, in his Rochester, NY basement, Tony opened his first store, American Sportsman. He went all out with a remodel of the store, and he even added a walkway and commercial entrance. With $50 in cash, he went to a former employer and bought everything he could to fill his store. Up to this point, Tony completely poured himself into whatever task was before him, and his first foray into the world of outdoor retail was no different. At the same time as opening and running the American Sportsman, Tony worked construction. He kept the store running by employing many part-time people while he was working construction full-time.
One of Tony's brothers was a fireman. Visiting a local firehouse, he had a chance to talk to many firefighters and learned of a fireman's schedule and the time off firefighters earned. Intrigued by the possibility of doing that for a living, he took the test and immediately devoted himself to his new career. While serving as a fireman, he kept working at and building up the American Sportsman. Tony served in the fire department for 20 years while building the AmChar legacy we all know today. He retired from the fire department in 1991 and, again, focused solely on growing AmChar.
Not satisfied with his store serving only local customers, he was trying to break into national distribution. With this goal in mind, he started AmChar Wholesale in 1979. The name AmChar is a derivation of American and DiChario. At the time, there were over 300,000 FFLs nationwide. This crowded field of FFLs bothered Tony, so when he started AmChar, he was intent in not selling to just any FFL. Tony sold to FFLs fully invested in their enterprise by ensuring they all had a physical, brick and mortar store. Before being set up with an account, AmChar required FFLs to provide documentation and pictures of the store and inventory, a practice AmChar sticks by to this day. With the advent of the internet, retail is handled a little differently, so you may do business with AmChar, but there are stipulations.
In 2006 Tony had his eye on importation, design, and manufacturing with the launch of American Tactical. Today's American Tactical facility in South Carolina has 16 CNC machines and two robots. Tony owns seven patents, with many more applications pending. With American Tactical, Tony wanted to ensure fair pricing for dealers and distributors alike, so he enacted pricing structures that accomplished this. American Tactical is a constantly evolving organism of ideas and innovation. Be on the lookout for exciting new products in the future!
Tony's career as a fireman exposed him to the law enforcement community. From AmChar's first day, they have been guided and directed by their desire to support local dealers and law enforcement. This devotion to the law enforcement community has made AmChar America's number one distributor of Glock.
AmChar moved out of the city to its beautiful Airpark Dr facility. It wasn't attractive at the time, but with Tony's years of construction experience, he helped build the facility we see today, down to getting his hands dirty with his friends that were licensed electricians, plumbers, and masons. Tony remembers mixing mortar with his friend Pat to help get the facility built. To Tony, the building of AmChar is not about making as much money as possible; it's about taking care of the customer, taking care of their families, and doing something that will leave a legacy of service and integrity. Customers are not just customers; they're family.
Airpark Dr is not AmChar's only location. AmChar has six locations in the Western Hemisphere;
AmChar New York Distribution Point
AmChar Wholesale. Inc
100 Airpark Dr.
Rochester, NY 14624
AmChar Puerto Rico
AmChar Caribe, Inc
1864 Avenida Glasgow
San Juan, PR 00921
AmChar Canada, Inc.
589 Steven Court,
Unit 5 Newmarket, ON L3Y 6Z3
Southern Distribution of Firearms and Ammunition and Law Enforcement Outlet
775 Hwy – 42 N.
McDonough, GA 30253
South Carolina Law Enforcement Outlet
AmChar South Carolina
231 Deming Way
Summerville, SC 29483
North Carolina Law Enforcement Outlet
AmChar North Carolina
4510 Northchase Pkwy NE D
Wilmington, NC 28405