Putin Supports Izhmash & Izhmekh Merger Under Kalashnikov Brand

Putin has publicly given his support to the proposed merger of Izhmash and Izhmekh (known as Baikal outside Russia) into a new company called Kalashnikov. Defense News reports

Putin gave his initial support to an idea of Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin for Izhmash to merge with another Izhveshk arms manufacturer, Izhmekh, under the brand name Kalashnikov.

“As for the merger, this is of course possible,” Putin said in televised remarks. “But the result needs to be an improvement in the situation and in no way a worsening. And always in such cases, there are many social questions. I ask you to pay attention to these.”

This plan makes sense. Both companies are in the same city and are both state-owned businesses. The new company will encompass a wide range of civilian and military pistols, rifles and shotguns and the Kalashnikov name is one of the most widely recognised in the world. I just hope General Kalashnikov will be getting something out of this.

[ Many thanks to Lance for emailing me the link. ]

Steve Johnson

Founder and Dictator-In-Chief of TFB. A passionate gun owner, a shooting enthusiast and totally tacti-uncool. Favorite first date location: any gun range. Steve can be contacted here.


  • bbmg

    Surely they’re not going to adopt the Kalashikov vodka logo?


    • Michael Pham

      Just thinking that. Was the second thought that came to my mind after “tacky”.

    • Partizan1942

      Kalaschnikov Vodka is a German company (they use Mikhail Timofeyevich’s name to sell Vodka) I assume Putin is talking about merging the two Russian companies and giving the new one a new name or forming a third company that would buy up Izhmash and Izhmekh. The how is just a technicality.

    • Máté

      I don’t even know what to say, or think…

  • milo

    if this gets russian rifles and pistols onto the american market im happy.

  • Viking

    The AK is dead. The Robinson XCR is a no brainer: superior controls, superior ergonomics, superior materials, superior furniture/modularity, superior 6.8 and .308 chamberings, superior overall performance. Lol, even the Galil Ace beats the AK!

    • Gumby

      And yet thousands will line up to get a legitimate Russian Kalashnikov. If anything, the XCR is dead on the military market, only ever a popular air soft piece.

      • Viking

        The XCR is by no means dead. The only reason the US military rejected it is because Robinson doesn’t have the same production capability FN or Colt has, although they could contract manufacturing out to FN with Robinson getting royaltiesfor their design. And then again, the US aren’t the only potential military buyer. All that aside, the XCR is in fact the superior platform. AK doesn’t even come close, no other rifle comes close! The Galil Ace also beats the AK, though I still don’t like its AK style magazine change procedure. If only IWI would build in a bolt hold open/close and mag drop free controls along with optional 6.8 chambering…

      • W

        The XCR is dead. I think it had enormous potential, though the FN introduced the SCAR, which is superior in my opinion.

        The AK is anything but dead. Just like the AR15 platform has evolved considerably with more ergonomic accessories to accomodate new optics and tactics, the AK is evolving too.

    • Esh325

      Give me a break man.

      • Gumby

        It is like comparing, say, a Corrola (economy car) to a Ferrari.

    • Tom – UK

      Kalashnikov is obviously just a brand name. Why do you feel the need to make a completely irrelevant comment hating on a 67 year old weapon design? Is it because you happen o have ought one of the most expensive rifles out there and need to let everyone (or really just yourself) that all that money was obviously worth it?

      • Partizan1942

        Tom, Viking smells like a Marketing Manager for Robinson rather than a rifle owner to me. 🙂

  • gunslinger

    when is someone going to make the “in soviet russia….” joke?

  • Eric

    Why do you care what general Kalashnikov gets out of this?

  • Doug

    Of course Kalashnikov would get something out of it. As a matter of both common law and civil law (the latter of which has been Russia’s legal system since 1993), when you use someone’s name in commerce you need to pay them a royalty.

    If I made an AR to sell and called it “The Firearms Blog Edition AR” or I started a company and called it “The Firearms Blog Rifle Company, you’d have every legal right to request and be granted a royalty.

    Aside from this, my understanding is that Kalashnikov already has a substantial equity stake in Izhmash (it is not a completely state-owned company as this blog post implies), so he’d be in on the deal anyway.

  • NightEye

    Some days ago was the approval of Russia’s graduation from the Jackson–Vanik amendment. I think that prices on weapons from Russia in America will reduce. And some banned rifles may be imported.

    So I wish new guns for my fellow American gun-owners!

    Peace from Russia!

  • Lance

    Very good news. Since Russian and CIS armies wil not buy new AK-74s they have a better chance of international markets for both AK-74s and AK-103s. And Mr. Kalashnikov get the royalties LOL.

  • Mike Knox

    Nice to see a President ‘putin’ a gun company back on it’s feet..

    • Partizan1942

      I can almost see how masses of gun loving right wing Americans virtually pat Putin’s back. It is so beautiful! 🙂

      • Mike Knox

        Vladimir Putin used to be KGB, so it’s undertandable on his support for Russian industry and Arms. Can’t say the same about most western leaders though..

  • Gidge

    Is this a merger or a takeover being called a merger because it sounds better?

    Let’s hope that the business side of things is handled by Izhveshk (a.k.a Baikal). Aside from adapting products to suit demand and provide well made sporting guns.

    My club has a couple old Baikal made Margolin pistols which are an absolute joy to shoot. I also recently got to fire the polymer of the Baikal Viking (MP-446, all steel version available). It looks ugly and uncomfortable but it fits the hand beautifully and has by far the best trigger of any polymer service weapon I’ve ever fired. None of this “heavy triggers are safer” crap.