Smith & Wesson moves into perimeter security market

Published 27 June 2009

Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation to acquire Universal Safety Response, Inc. (USR); USR is the creator of the GRAB vehicle safety barrier; the move expands S&W’s revenue base into commercial, non-firearms categories

Springfield, Massachusetts-based Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation (NASDAQ: SWHC), parent company of the 157-year old Smith & Wesson Corp., has entered into an agreement to acquire Universal Safety Response, Inc. (USR), a privately held security systems solutions provider, for up to 9.7 million shares of common stock and up to $26.2 million in cash. S&W also announced preliminary financial information from its fourth quarter of fiscal 2009, including year-over-year increases in revenue, gross margins, product backlog, and cash balances. The company will report its fourth quarter and full fiscal 2009 performance today.

USR, founded in 1994 and headquartered in Franklin, Tennessee, is a full-service provider of integrated perimeter security solutions. USR is the creator of the GRAB vehicle safety barrier, which, the company says, is the only active barrier product that meets the Federal Highway Administration’s TL-2 safety test, the Department of State’s K12 L3 security test, and the Department of Defense ASTM M50 Shallow Mount security test. USR has exploited the success of its GRAB barrier systems to become a turnkey perimeter security provider with a large portfolio of products and services. USR serves different clients in the defense, transportation, and petro-chemical industries, as well as airports, Fortune 500 companies and national laboratories.

Acquiring USR provides Smith & Wesson entry into the rapidly growing perimeter security market, a move aligned with the company’s growth and diversification strategy, and one that expands its revenue base into commercial, non-firearms categories.

Michael Golden, president and CEO of Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation, said, “We are excited about the opportunities that this acquisition creates for both Smith & Wesson and for USR. USR has built a solid reputation in the perimeter security market based on its differentiated GRAB product and its unique ability to deliver integrated security systems solutions to an impressive list of government agencies and blue-chip customers. USR has assembled a strong group of professionals in the perimeter security industry. In addition, USR’s broad product and service portfolio, combined with its management’s expertise in perimeter security, gives us a strong platform for future growth. Growing demand for enhanced security measures at government, military and corporate facilities presents USR with numerous opportunities. In addition, there are opportunities in areas of transportation, railroad crossings, work zone safety, ballistics, law enforcement, energy producing facilities and international markets yet to be addressed.”

USR operates primarily in two facilities in Franklin, Tennessee, with an expanding workforce of approximately 110 employees.