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Mon Mar 31, 2014, 02:10 PM

 

The Man Who Wants to Buy the Biggest U.S. Gun Maker Doesn't Own a Gun

The other day I reported an out-of-the-blue unsolicited $1 billion takeover bid for Freedom Group, the largest gun and ammunition manufacturer in the U.S. The March 11 proposal by a little-known Palm Beach, Fla., company called Global Digital Solutions struck me as dubious, given the would-be buyer’s tiny size and lack of a track record in the insular small-arms business. The needle on my bizarre-o meter twitched when Global Digital (GDSI) couldn’t put me in touch with its founder and chief executive, a serial tech entrepreneur named Richard Sullivan. Finally, there was the vituperative reaction from Freedom, a privately-held conglomeration controlled by the New York-based private equity firm, Cerberus Capital Management. What the heck is going on here?

That Cerberus might unload Freedom Group—whose brands include Remington, Bushmaster, DPMS/Panther Arms, Marlin, Para USA, and Barnes Bullets—isn’t so far-fetched. Bushmaster manufactured the semiautomatic military-style rifle used by the killer in the December 2012 Newtown, Conn., elementary school massacre., and investor outcry following that horrific event put pressure on Cerberus to announce it would seek a buyer for Freedom Group. After shopping the company around for a while, Cerberus said it would recapitalize Freedom in an arrangement allowing antsy investors to step away from the gun business.

Global Digital’s Richard Sullivan, who eventually got back to me, insists that his ardor for Freedom is genuine. Despite the puny financial scale of his current operation, which trades over-the-counter and has a market capitalization of less than $60 million, Sullivan says he has a long history of starting and acquiring companies—and that he has big ideas for consolidating the fragmented U.S. gun business.

An affable guy with a thick Boston accent, Sullivan has some insightful things to say about the strangeness of established small arms manufacturers having so far resisted the integration of digital features into their products. He’s right that from a purely technological standpoint, it’s odd that small arms by and large haven’t progressed beyond mechanisms anchored firmly in the 20th century.

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-03-31/the-man-bidding-to-buy-the-biggest-u-dot-s-dot-gun-maker-doesnt-own-one

10 replies, 1806 views

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Mon Mar 31, 2014, 03:52 PM

1. It's not odd that a mature technology hasn't radically changed.

 

it’s odd that small arms by and large haven’t progressed beyond mechanisms anchored firmly in the 20th century.

50 years ago we traveled by air in jet aircraft with a cruising speed of around 600 mph, and today...

We travel by air in jet aircraft with a cruising speed of around 600 mph (with somewhat greater fuel efficiency).

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Response to Jgarrick (Reply #1)

Mon Mar 31, 2014, 05:51 PM

3. The guy owns a company that is trying to produce a smart gun.

 

He thought what the hell why not throw in a low bid and see just how much Cerberus wants to get rid of freedom group. Or rather just Remington, the article is not very clear.
A smart gun will not get any traction without a seriously big name and an elimination of most other options.

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Response to clffrdjk (Reply #3)

Tue Apr 1, 2014, 12:21 AM

6. I agree regarding smart guns. There simply isn't anything beyond the tiniest of niche markets

 

For such a product, especially given that the chances of police adopting them is essentially nil.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Mon Mar 31, 2014, 03:53 PM

2. That last sentence. Whatever your position on arms...

 

the reality is, the American civilian population has access to the types of arms which pre-date Isadora Duncan. Even a 90-yr-old Tommy gun is beyond the reach of 99%+ of people. I'm happy with that.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Mon Mar 31, 2014, 06:14 PM

4. If he truly wants to get into the gun business he needs to do some serious studying.

 

Sullivan says that he’s had quiet communication with NRA representatives to reassure them that he intends his advances to be purely optional—another choice that would expand the universe of gun owners—not a feature that government could mandate as part of some scheme to monitor or limit the use of firearms.


The above shows one of two things. Either he does not have any idea of the current state of firearms laws, which he needs to fix fast, the ATF does not play nicely with claims of ignorance. Or he has absolutely no problem telling outright lies, not little lies, not half truths, not exaggerations, but blatant and complete lies.

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Mon Mar 31, 2014, 06:32 PM

5. That was the biggest non-story

I have read in a long time.

From the author-
Even after talking with him, I can’t tell whether he’s making a real offer for Freedom engaging in an elaborate publicity stunt, or indulging a flight of fancy. Maybe it’s a combination of all three.


I'm not sure why he even wrote this piece except to fill a quota of words.

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Response to sarisataka (Reply #5)

Sun Apr 6, 2014, 11:24 AM

7. To get page views. (n/t)

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Mon Apr 7, 2014, 03:24 PM

8. What's your opinion on the subject of

male gynecologists?

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun Jun 1, 2014, 02:54 PM

9. "Ex-Sen. Scott Brown Working With Gun Company Tied To Brutal Regime"

 

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023720266

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/muckraker/ex-sen-scott-brown-working-with-gun-company-tied-to-brutal-regime

..."Global Digital Solutions is refocusing its business strategy on positioning itself as a leader in providing small arms manufacturing, complementary security and technology solutions and knowledge-based, culturally attuned social consulting in unsettled areas," the site said. "Pursuant to the new focus, GDSI announced the planned acquisition of Airtronic USA, Inc., a small arms manufacturer headquartered in Elk Grove Village, Illinois."

A list of Airtronic clients on the GDSI website includes Bahrain, a country where the ruling monarchy has been accused of engaging in a brutal two-year crackdown against its political opponents in the country. The Airtronic product catalog notes its international military clients include the "armed forces" and "law enforcement agencies" of Bahrain and at least 13 other countries.

Multiple international human rights groups have condemned the Bahraini government for attacking civilians since widespread and regular anti-government protests broke out in the country in early 2011 as part of the Arab Spring. In a report released in August 2012, Physicians for Human Rights dubbed the Bahraini government the "tear gas regime" and accused it of unleashing an unprecedented "torrent" of tear gas on crowds and even in homes, a tactic the group said amounted to "chemical warfare" and violated international law. In that report, the human rights group concluded tear gas was used by authorities in the majority of neighborhoods in Bahrain "at least once per week" from February 2011 through August 2012.

According to Human Rights Watch, protesters, including children, have been seriously injured when struck by tear gas canisters. Human Rights Watch has also accused the Bahraini government of "routinely detain(ing) children without cause and subject(ing) them to ill-treatment" and "brutally torturing activists" with electro-shocks, beatings, and waterboarding. A U.S. State Department report issued last year said the Bahraini regime was responsible for "significant human rights problems," though the U.S. itself has engaged in arms deals since the crackdown began. Critics both inside and outside the government have accused the Obama administration of not taking a hard enough line on Bahrain, which is a key strategic ally and serves as the headquarters of the United States Fifth Fleet in the Persian Gulf...

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Response to SecularMotion (Original post)

Sun Jun 1, 2014, 03:07 PM

10. "Scott Brown lent his name to a shady company for stock worth 1.3 million at the time"

 

www.democraticunderground.com/10025034398

http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/nation/2014/05/31/scott-brown-senate-candidate-got-big-stock-grant-from-tiny-florida-firm/igw9q08npW9vjJAkHyjg7N/story.html

Scott Brown got big stake in obscure Florida firm
For advisory role, an award with initial worth of $1.3m

By Noah Bierman and Todd Wallack | Globe Staff June 01, 2014


An obscure company in West Palm Beach that markets itself as a firearms manufacturer made a splashy announcement last summer: It was appointing Scott Brown, the former Massachusetts senator, to its advisory board.

Not revealed at the time was what Brown received in exchange for lending his name to the venture. But a report the company made to the Securities and Exchange Commission last month, which has not been previously made public, shows that Brown received stock that was worth $1.3 million at the time. Its value has declined considerably since then, as the stock price has fallen by half.

Global Digital Solutions Inc. does not yet sell or make guns. It has no revenue, no patents, no trademarks, no manufacturing facilities, and no experience developing weapons, according to its most recent corporate filings.

It was founded as a beauty supply company in New Jersey — selling hair spray, conditioners, and shampoos, before reinventing itself as a wireless data firm from California and then again last year as a South Florida-based firearms maker and gun technology innovator.


I'm sure this is all fine and dandy with the OP- after all, the reigning sugar daddy/kingmaker
of the gun control movement endorsed Brown over Elizbeth Warren...

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