Skip to comments.Mystery Company Is Rapidly Acquiring U.S. Gun and Ammo Manufacturers
Posted on 01/01/2012 9:31:54 AM PST by qaz123
Reports that a mysterious company has been buying up U.S. gun manufacturers have been popping up on the internet for several months. When we first learned of the possibility that a single company was rapidly acquiring companies like Bushmaster, Remington, and Marlin Firearms we immediately suspected that something was amiss. Apparently, we were not alone, because others were thinking the same thing.
One rumor that popped up was that global financier George Soros, historically an anti-gun advocate, was behind the moves, and that he was positioning the gun industry to reduce pro-gun lobbying efforts. This prompted the National Rifle Association to step in to assure American gun owners that this wasnt a behind the scenes coup. The owners and investors involved are strong supporters of the Second Amendment and are avid hunters and shooters, the NRA said in a statement.
While Soros may not be involved, the New York Times identified the company making the acquisitions as an obscure organization known as The Freedom Group, which is managed by multi-billion dollar investment firm Cerberus Capital Management:
In recent years, many top-selling brands including the 195-year-old Remington Arms, as well as Bushmaster Firearms and DPMS, leading makers of military-style semiautomatics have quietly passed into the hands of a single private company. It is called the Freedom Group and it is the most powerful and mysterious force in the U.S. commercial gun industry today.
Never heard of it?
Youre not alone. Even within gun circles, the Freedom Group is something of an enigma. Its rise has been so swift that it has become the subject of wild speculation and grassy-knoll conspiracy theories. In the realm of consumer rifles and shotguns long guns, in the trade it is unrivaled in its size and reach. By its own count, the Freedom Group sold 1.2 million long guns and 2.6 billion rounds of ammunition in the 12 months ended March 2010, the most recent year for which figures are publicly available.
Behind this giant is Cerberus Capital Management, the private investment company that first came to widespread attention when it acquired Chrysler in 2007. (Chrysler later had to be rescued by taxpayers). With far less fanfare, Cerberus, through the Freedom Group, has been buying big names in guns and ammo.
From its headquarters in Manhattan, Cerberus has assembled a remarkable arsenal. It began with Bushmaster
After Bushmaster, the Freedom Group moved in on Remington, which traces its history to the days of flintlocks and today is supplying M24 sniper rifles to the government of Afghanistan and making handguns for the first time in decades. The group has also acquired Marlin Firearms, which turned out a special model for Annie Oakley, as well as Dakota Arms, a maker of high-end big-game rifles. It has bought DPMS Firearms, another maker of semiautomatic, military-style rifles, as well as manufacturers of ammunition and tactical clothing.
We believe our scale and product breadth are unmatched within the industry, the Freedom Group said in a filing last year with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Why Cerberus went after gun companies isnt clear. Many private investment firms shy away from such industries to avoid scaring off big investors like pension funds.
Whatever the reason, Cerberus, through the Freedom Group, is now a major player.
Source: San Francisco Chronicle via The New York Times
While Cerberus may be acting purely from a business perspective in acquiring some of the largest and oldest gun manufacturers in America and they may have the best of intentions, we remain cautious about the New York Times interpretation of events (especially when we see the same news report republished in their sister magazine in San Francisco). It is, after all, the New York Times, a left leaning media organization that has long advocated, either directly or indirectly, restrictive gun legislation that runs counter to the Second Amendment.
Anytime a single company acquires most of the major players in an industry and the most liberal leaning media outlet in the world plays it off as no big deal it should be cause for contemplation. For all we know, the Freedom Group is intent on centralizing gun lobbying efforts into one organization. Weve seen this kind of double speak before, and while the Freedom Group leaves a positive feel, so too does the Patriot Act until you get past the cover. If it turns out to be the gun industry equivalent of a Trojan Horse, and Freedom Group management is embedded with anti-Second Amendment leadership, then the risk becomes that Congressional lobbying efforts to expand gun freedoms could be muted and restrictive legislation enacted as a result. There would, in essence, be no one left in American industry to fend off an attack on the second amendment.
We are, of course, speculating about the motivations of the Freedom Groups parent company Cerberus Capital Management, but for conspiracys sake well note that Cerberus is a mythical creature employed as Hades loyal watchdog to guard the gates to the underworld. This begs the question: Is the Freedom Group guarding and preserving the peoples right to bear arms (which seems to be the case), or are they the watchdogs for someone else, simply positioning the chess pieces for when the time is right?
Hat tip BJ
So, who is Cerberus Capital Management? Name names.
Is this the outfit that Dan Quayle has an interest?
There is a fairly long article on Cerberus at Wikipedia. No telling how much it has been slanted, but presumably the names are correct.
Cerberus Capital Management, L.P. is one of the largest private equity investment firms in the United States. The firm is based in New York City, and run by 51-year-old financier Steve Feinberg. Former U.S. Vice President Dan Quayle has been a prominent Cerberus spokesperson and runs one of its international units.
The firm’s headquarters are located at 299 Park Avenue in New York City.
Founded in 1992, Cerberus is named for the mythological three-headed dog that guarded the gates of Hades. Feinberg has stated to his employees that while the Cerberus name seemed like a good idea at the time, he later regretted naming the company after the mythological dog.
The company has been a very active acquirer of businesses over the past several years and now has sizable investments in automotive, sportswear, paper products, military services, real estate, energy, retail, glassmaking, transportation, and building products. In 2006, its holdings amounted to $24 billion.
On October 19, 2006, John W. Snow, President George W. Bush’s second Treasury Secretary, was named chairman of Cerberus.
J. Ezra Merkin is a partner in Cerberus. Merkin invested his funds into Cerberus and its portfolio companies. His Gabriel fund invested $79 million in Chrysler, $66 million in GMAC and $67 million in Cerberus partnerships, according to year-end statements. The Gabriel Fund was a feeder fund for Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC.
Go to wiki
Can’t find any Soros connection. FactCheck and Snopes deny the rumor that he is involved. Of course, neither source is reliable on such matters, and possibly the search engines have scrubbed the connection.
But it looks like it’s run by Establishment Republican types.
This has been psted a few times on FR. Soros has nothing to do with The Freedom Group or Cerberus Capital Management.
Someone ought to invent Anti-Trust laws...Oh wait, they got sold too...
Sounds very scary to have this one Mega player buying up weapon manufactures. Nothing good can come from this IMO.
I have noticed that it seems Beretta has some connection to just about every gun manufacturer in Europe.
If Soros really thinks he could buy all the gun manufacturers and shut them down, then he’s nuts. Of course, he IS nuts, but that’s beside the point.
There are a lot of people who know how to make guns. As long as the biggies are doing it, the small operators will remain small. But if Soros shuts down the biggies, the small operators will suddenly become big operators.
Nothin much good comes from monopolies.
Beretta is an Italian company, so it doesn’t surprise me.
With the so called “Arab Spring” and Iran messing stuff up in the ME, it makes sense to be in the arms business.
There will be chaos and violent confrontations in the coming years and American companies sell more arms and resupply than any other country.
Especially if they manufacture the primers. That is the weak link as I found out during the primer shortage of a few years ago.
Sorry but you’re first post of 2012 is totall Bulls#it. There is nothing sinsiter at work here, and in fact the Freedom Group is made up of 2nd amendment supporters who are doing the industry a service by maintaining the viability of this companies.
Search would have told you this.
The NRA came out recently and said that this just isnt true, which in my books is all the more reason to suspect that it is true given NRA’s stance lately on various matters.
I would have to see a lot of evidence showing that it is a good deal before I’d buy into it.