The news just gets better and better for action-demanding moms. First, the ostensibly anti-gun Everytown for Gun Safety video they recently released had the beneficial knock-on effect of beautifully illustrating the the advisability of gun ownership and armed self defense for tens of thousands of women around the country. Then Moms Demand Action had an overwhelming turnout of almost two hundred fired-up attendees at this past weekend’s Denver bootcamp and sleepover. Now, as the Wall Street Journal is reporting, it turns out the problem’s bigger than they imagined. There are actually plenty of smaller, local establishments across the country that are only too happy to welcome customers who come in strapped . . .
“Procter & Gamble Co. plans to cut more than half of its brands, as the world’s largest consumer products company slims down amid sluggish sales,” latimes.com reports. “The Cincinnati-based firm will shed 90 to 100 brands and focus investment on remaining product lines that comprise more than 95% of company profit, Chief Executive A.G. Lafley said in a conference call with analysts Friday. ‘This will be a much simpler, much less complex company,’ he said.” Can someone forward this post to Freedom Group CEO George Kollitides? More than that, I reckon America’s largest gun brands are selling too many models. This tsunami of SKUs confuses consumers (how do you choose?), dilutes brands (what is a Marlin?) and lowers quality (you call that a Marlin?). Now that the gun boom has gone bust, it’s time for these storied gun brands to cut extraneous models and concentrate on core products. Am I wrong?
While I saw no obvious evidence of sales slack during my recent tour of Smith & Wesson’s Springfield factory, there’s no shortage of reports corroborating the general impression that the post-Newtown sales boom is well and truly over. In the sales panic that followed – which was really just an extension of the longer-running Obama-fueled sales boom – just about everyone who had even thought about purchasing a firearm found the disposable income to pick one up, no matter the price. But that demand surge has now cooled leaving excess production capacity and fully-stocked shelves — with the possible exception of ammo. To wit: the latest sales figures released by publicly traded Ruger, above, as reported by qz.com. The Southport, Connecticut-based manufacturer reported . . .
We’ve posted a bit of press over the last week about SilencerCo’s new shotgun silencer, the Salvo 12. For those not in the know, the Salvo 12 is a silencer made for your scattergun, and it is making waves, just not the auditory kind. But as the video above shows, SilencerCo isn’t a one-trick pony. They’re adept at making stunning marketing videos, with solid concepts, that appeal to a much broader audience than your “typical” gun owner. Or at least I thought.
That’s right. GunUp managed to get its hands on a passel of these 9mm stainless steel beauties. Smith turned out the 5906 semi-autos from 1989 to 1999 and they were very popular with LEOs. They’re DA/SA, hammer-fired, come with a 15-round magazine, wrap-around grips, a 4″ barrel and a thumb safety. Think of them sort of as a Smith Hi Power. Shooting 9×19 from this all-steel gun, you won’t even notice recoil. And at $349 shipped to your FFL, it’s a steal on a solid gun you’ll pass down to your children.
Fresh on the heels of their dismissal of Mark Kresser as head of Miami-based Taurus USA, the Brazilian gun maker has just announced that they’ve hired Anthony Acitelli as President and CEO. Acitelli is a firearms industry vet and comes to Taurus from Colt where he was SVP of sales. Press release after the jump . . .
“Taurus International Manufacturing, the US division of Forjas Taurus [has] fired multi-year CEO Mark Kresser,” gunnuts.net reports. “Based on the information received, Mark’s firing was a sudden change for a company that had been attempting to re-invent its image under his leadership in the past several years.” Last week, Brazilian ammo maker CBC/Magtech upped their stake in Taurus, purchasing a controlling interest. No doubt Kresser’s departure is tied to the takeover. TTAG’s sorry to see him go . . .
“Firearms manufacturer Smith & Wesson has agreed to pay $2 million to settle U.S. government charges over bribes the company allegedly paid out to foreign officials between 2007 and 2010.” So reports fortune.com. The payment stems from accusations that Smith reps bribed military and police brass in India and Pakistan as long ago as 2007. “Smith & Wesson’s alleged actions violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), the SEC said Monday, adding that the company ‘profited by more than $100,000′ from the one contract to be completed before the authorities caught wind of the activities.” While admitting no wrongdoing, Smith’s canned its entire foreign sales staff so draw your own conclusions.
Shooting Illustrated had been pimping the Remington R51 hard. They put it on their cover, they gave it a glowing review, and even after a plethora of negative reviews of the firearm started coming out they issued a full-throated defense of their actions and conclusions. As I noted, this situation is the clearest illustration of the lack of integrity among dead tree publications. But there’s now a problem: even Remington admits the R51 was a debacle. In light of that new development, Shooting Illustrated had this to say . . .
I had the chance to visit the heart of gun valley for the first time last week. I was in Springfield, Massachusetts with a clowder of other gun guys courtesy of Smith & Wesson. The real reason for the trip was to give us some trigger time with three new guns. The first two are really updates; Smith has now made their .380 pistol and .38 revolver Bodyguards part of the M&P line. They’ve also replaced the integrated Insight lasers in the original versions with new Crimson Trace pointers that they say are more reliable and easier to maintain. They also showed us a new gun that we can’t talk about until it’s released in a couple of weeks. But in between the shooting and the sharing, we took some time to tour Smith’s massive 480,000 square foot production facility. Their media relations director, Paul Pluff, showed us around and I’m pretty sure we walked a good 479,000 of those square feet . . .
We have been chronicling the incredible failure that is the Remington R51 for quite some time now. The story took its latest turn yesterday when Remington
recalled offered to replace all R51s sold to date. The story started with such promise, but as the rosy marketing hype gave way to the terrible reality of the finished product there was one question we kept asking ourselves: how did this thing ever get made? According to our sources, it looks like production may have started over the fervent objections of the people who designed the gun . . .
Were you as excited by the original announcement of the R51 as we were? Were you then equally as horrified that a company with the history and tradition of Remington would release a QC-free POS like that upon the gun-buying public? If you were an early adopter (or just missed Nick’s review) and laid down some cold hard cash for one, Remington’s finally acknowledging the debacle and they’re trying to make things right. Friday afternoons are when everyone releases bad news so Big Green’s just let it be known that they’re offering to replace your R51 (with one that, you know, works, we presume) and will throw in two new mags and a custom Pelican case for your trouble. Their announcement after the jump . . .