Manufacturer of the Vector submachine gun, and parent company to Sphinx System AG, makers of high-end CZ 75 handgun derivative, may be in financial trouble. At the end of 2015, Sphinx System AG was declared bankrupt; now its parent company may be in danger as well due to court-ordered restructuring. From DWJ.de:
After belonging to the Kriss group Sphinx Systems AG, manufacturer of the famous Sphinx pistols, has been declared bankrupt on 30.11.2015, now called the provisional debt restructuring moratorium was for the two other companies of the group, the Kriss International AG and the Kriss Systems AG, ordered by the court. If a Swiss company gets into financial difficulties, it may request to avoid bankruptcy the moratorium in court. The court then appoints a temporary administrator, who clarifies the financial position of the company and the possibilities of rehabilitation. Here, a waiver of a portion of the receivables is also negotiating with the creditors. If no agreement can be reached, the creditor may request the opening of bankruptcy proceedings. The moratorium was imposed by the court on 01.29.2016 and will initially run 5 months, until 29.06.2016.
Kriss was no longer represented in January this year only a small booth at the Shot Show in March at IWA. According to statements by experts Brach has the Vector weapon system that is available as a sub-machine gun, pistol, carbine and kurzläufiges rifle, made any significant sales in Europe and also found the US market even as a lover weapon a niche.
I am not a legal or financial expert by any stretch of the imagination, but to me it seems that for whatever reason Sphinx has fallen into debt, and that court-ordered restructuring could saddle the parent company Kriss with that financial burden, putting the company in danger
Kriss purchased Sphinx System AG in 2010, becoming both the parent company and primary importer for pistols made by the higher-end Swiss manufacturer. This year, Sphinx pistol production began in the United States, as well. Looking at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms manufacturers sales statistics for 2014 – the most recent year for which there is data, we see that Kriss USA sold only 1,021 pistols in 2014 (update: this number excludes the 23,000 pistols exported from the USA in 2014!!!!), that number being comparable to, for example, Boberg Arms Co (919 pistols), or Magnum Research (1,043 pistols), for that year. Whether this is related to their financial problems or not isn’t for me to say, however it does I think firmly place Sphinx in the “boutique” handgun manufacturer category.
Thanks to Gabor for the tip!
KRISS USA has responded and said …
- KRISS Group SA is the parent company of SPHINX Systems AG, KRISS International AG, and KRISS Systems AG, located in Switzerland.
- KRISS Group SA is also the parent company of KRISS USA, Inc., which is located in the United States. KRISS USA, Inc. is financially and operationally independent of its Swiss sister companies. Therefore, KRISS USA, Inc. is not affected by the current situation in Switzerland.
- SPHINX Systems AG, KRISS International AG, and KRISS Systems AG have experienced a progressive market reduction due to export regulation changes and foreign policy restrictions from Switzerland.
- A major contributing factor to the financial difficulties of the Swiss companies was the cancellation of a 60 million dollar foreign government contract. SPHINX Systems AG, KRISS International AG, and KRISS Systems AG were left with an unsustainable business, forcing KRISS Group SA to initiate a Chapter 11 for reorganization.
- All KRISS Group SA brands and products, including KRISS and SPHINX firearms, will continue to be manufactured and fully supported by KRISS USA, Inc. All business activities previously managed by Switzerland will be centralized by KRISS USA, Inc.
- Contrary to what was cited in The Firearm Blog article, KRISS USA Inc. manufactured and exported more than 23,000 pistols in 2014, according to the BATF Firearms Manufacturing and Exporting Report, page 18 and 85. Additionally, KRISS USA, Inc. has experienced a strong and steady growth in the commercial market segment.