Australian defence contractor NIOA has expanded its global reach with the 100 per cent acquisition of the industry-leading rifle design and manufacturing company, Barrett Firearms.
In announcing the deal, NIOA Group CEO Robert Nioa (photo) said the two family-owned companies came together out of a shared commitment to quality, innovation, loyalty, and mission.
“NIOA’s association with Barrett dates back to 2008. We have been inspired by the story of Barrett and admire what Ronnie, Chris and the family have built over more than four decades,” Mr. Nioa said.
“It’s been a story of hard work, perseverance, and purpose culminating in the delivery of critical capability for the men and women of the US military and its allies around the world as well as exceptional products to law enforcement agencies and civilian markets.”
“Together we share the same mission - combining our expertise and family business values will ensure Barrett carries on building the finest products in the world,” he added.
Mr. Nioa confirmed the company would continue to operate under the Barrett brand as a separate division within the NIOA Group alongside NIOA Australia, NIOA New Zealand, the Australian Missile Corporation and the group’s investment in joint venture company Rheinmetall NIOA Munitions.
All management and staff at the Murfreesboro manufacturing facility in Tennessee have been retained and production will continue as normal. Over time it is expected that manufacturing activities in Murfreesboro will be further expanded.
Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Mr. Nioa also announced two key leadership appointments: current Barrett President Sam Shallenberger has been promoted to the role of Chief Executive Officer while long-serving Barrett Chief Operating Officer Bryan James becomes President.
Ronnie and Chris Barrett will provide ongoing support as executive advisers to Barrett and the NIOA Group.
Barrett founder Ronnie Barrett said: “Today marks the beginning of a new chapter in the Barrett story. Rob and the NIOA team have great respect for the legacy Barrett has created as the leader in long range precision rifles. It’s reassuring to know Barrett will be in good hands with a family-owned company that is focused on manufacturing and delivering world-class firearms and munitions to a global network.”
The Barrett acquisition marks an exciting next chapter for NIOA as the company’s entry to the US market where it has long-standing trusted relationships with American companies such as Vista Outdoors, Leupold, General Dynamics, Northrup Grumman, and the Winchester-operated Lake City ammunition plant.
Established in 1973, NIOA is the largest Australian-owned supplier of firearms, weapons and ammunition to the Australian and New Zealand defence forces, law enforcement agencies and commercial markets.
NIOA is a major tenant at the Australian government owned, contractor operated (GOCO) munitions facility at Benalla in Victoria where it is currently manufacturing 120mm munitions for the Abrams tank along with 30mm and 35mm cannon ammunition.
The company is contracted to deliver major weapons programs for the Australian and New Zealand militaries and has recently established an artillery shell forging factory in Maryborough, Queensland in a joint venture with Rheinmetall of Germany.
Founded in 1982, Barrett is a family-owned and operated company and the world leader in long-range, large-calibre, precision rifle design and manufacturing.
Barrett products are used by civilians, sport shooters, law enforcement agencies, the United States military and more than 75 US Department of State approved countries around the world.
The Barrett Quality Management System (QMS) has received the prestigious ISO 9001:2015 certification for the design and manufacture of firearms, ammunition, and accessories, and to provide training for those systems.