First, don’t panic, all will be explained.
In a strange move, shareholders at Smith & Wesson Holding Corp have voted overwhelmingly to change the company’s name to “American Outdoor Brands Corp”, supposedly to reflect the company’s recent diversification efforts, such as its purchase of laser manufacturer Crimson Trace and knifemaker Taylor Brands.
What’s important to know for our readers who are surely held in suspense at this point is that “Smith & Wesson” will continue to be the brand used for the company’s firearms subsidiary, Smith & Wesson Corp. That is to say, the name change applies only to the holding corporation under which Smith & Wesson, Crimson Trace, Taylor Brands, and other subsidiaries operate.
That doesn’t change the strangeness of the name change, however. At the risk of editorializing a bit, “American Outdoor Brands Corp” has all the brand recognition and flavor of “Company Corp Incorporated, LLC”, and it’s not clear what about Smith & Wesson was so bad that it needed changing in the first place. It certainly wouldn’t be the first time that a gun company lent its name to a larger holding firm, but perhaps that’s the problem. It seems likely that the stockholders felt their company being directly associated with such a well recognized gun company would negatively impact its performance, although the idea that a name change would substantially impact that sounds like wishful thinking to me.
H/T, Broń i Amunicja