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Two days ago, TTAG reported that the increasingly diversified holding company known as Smith & Wesson is hell bent on destroying the Thompson/Center Arms brand. They’re spending millions shutting down the company’s Rochester, New Hampshire manufacturing and administrative base, bringing the black powder brand “in house.” While Thompson/Center will still exist as a Smith & Wesson “nameplate,” it’s only a matter of time before the corporate culture destroys its heart and soul. Today, after the stock markets closed for the weekend, the firearms Borg known as the Freedom Group announced that they’re performing the same brandicide on Bushmaster . . .

The Freedom Group, led by Home Depot non-hero and Chrysler bankruptcy steward Bob Nardelli, is shutting down the gunmaker’s Windham, Maine factory. The facility is scheduled to close on March 31. The Freedom Group will terminate 73 Bushmaster employees in the Pine Tree State.

Once again the pencil pushers have won the day, exchanging long term vitality for balance sheet beautification. “Given increasing costs and pricing pressures affecting the entire firearms industry, this action is clearly necessary and responsible.” BOD Chairman John B. Blystone asserted in the presser. “The move will have no impact on customers or the existing supply base.”

Wanna bet?

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    • Surprised someone hasn’t bought Bushmaster?!? You mean someone like Cerberus’ Freedom Group, the same people who own Remington, Bushmaster, DPMS/Panther Arms, Marlin, H&R, NEF, LC Smith, Parker, EOTAC, AAC, Dakota, Barnes Bullets, and INTC? Bushmaster is one of if not the best-selling brands of AR-15 rifles on the market. Why would the ownership shut the brand down entirely? Are you sure this isn’t simply a move to another locality?

      • After looking at some of the news stories about the closing, I wonder if the panty-wetting crowd in Windham didn’t play a role in costing the community these jobs. According to one story, “Bushmaster made news in August, when R.J. Grondin & Sons proposed building an enclosed firing range at its quarry in Windham for weapons testing by Bushmaster. The proposal followed months of complaints by residents about noise from high-power weapons testing at the quarry.” Maybe the holding company decided to leave for somewhere that the locals are happier to have the jobs.


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