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Reply #50


Response to Junkdrawer (Original post)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 07:42 PM

50. Brought to you courtesy of Cerberus Capital Management

It seems like the version of the story quoted in the OP isn't exactly accurate. Dyke sold Bushmaster to Cerberus in 2006, and the DC sniper incident was no impediment. Cerberus has since been buying up other small arms manufacturers for its "Freedom Group" like there's no tomorrow.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/27/business/how-freedom-group-became-the-gun-industrys-giant.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Cerberus representatives who arrived here in 2005 clearly saw potential. Inside, several dozen gunsmiths, working by hand, were fitting together 6,000 to 7,000 weapons a month. At the time, Bushmaster was thriving, though it had been stung by bad publicity stemming from the Beltway sniper shootings. (In a 2004 settlement with victims of the shootings and their families, Bullís Eye Shooter Supply, the store where the gun was acquired, agreed to pay $2 million, and Bushmaster agreed to pay $568,000, but they did not admit liability.)

Richard Dyke, then the principal owner and chairman of Bushmaster, welcomed the visitors from New York. A blunt-spoken Korean War veteran and Republican fund-raiser, he had made a fortune himself by buying companies in trouble, including one that made poker chips. In 1976, he bought a bankrupt gun maker in Bangor, Me., for $241,000, moved it to Windham and later changed its name to Bushmaster.

The company that Mr. Dyke bought had patents on semiautomatic weapons designed for the military and police. But he was drawn to the nascent market in military-style firearms for civilians. He saw as his customers precision target shooters, including current and former military personnel, police officers and, well, military wannabes, he says. . . .

Bushmaster was among the first to sell ordinary people on weapons that look and feel like the ones carried by soldiers. Today many gun makers have embraced military-style weapons, a major but controversial source of growth for the commercial gun market, says Tom Diaz, a senior policy analyst at the Violence Policy Center, a research group that backs gun control.

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