ICYMI: Industry News
From June 7–11, 2021

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FN To Supply U.S. Army With M240 Machine Guns, Spare Receivers

FN America has been awarded a firm-fixed-price contract to supply the U.S. Army with M240 series machine gun variants and spare receivers. The contract, awarded through 2026, is multi-faceted and will support both the U.S. Army and other Department of Defense (DoD) programs.

“The U.S. Army contract for the M240 machine gun was the first military contract FN was awarded and the first to be produced from our production facility in South Carolina,” said Mark Cherpes, FN American president and CEO. “We’re incredibly honored to continue our relationship with the Army, supporting them with high quality and reliable weapon systems for our servicemen and women.”

The M240 general purpose machine gun, derived from the FN MAG 58, was adopted by the U.S. military in the late 1970s, and has been in continual service since being introduced. This contract provides a procurement vehicle for the US Army to purchase multiple variants of the M240 machine gun, including the M240 coaxial, the M240B, M240L, M240D and M240H models.

In addition to the M240 and its variants, FN currently holds contracts for the FN M249 lightweight machine gun; the FN MK 46, MK 48, MK 17, and MK 20 SSR for USSOCOM and various other contracts.

For more info: fnamerica.com.

Nightforce Announces ATACR USSOCOM Contract

Nightforce Optics announces another variant of the ATACR product line has been selected to fill the Ranging – Variable Power Scope (R-VPS) component of the Miniature Aiming Systems – Day Optic (MAS-D) Program.

The MIL-SPEC ATACR 4-20×50 F1 will be integrated as the Mid-Range and the Designated Marksman solutions for U.S. Special Operations Command’s current and future anticipated Semi-Automatic Sniper Weapon Systems. The R-VPS will round out a complete family of Variable Power Scopes awarded to Nightforce Optics within the MAS-D Program.

“We’re both proud and humbled to realize another Nightforce ATACR model selection within the VPS family of scopes for USSOCOM. While a new benchmark for us, the real benefit is the continuity it brings to the end user. Now, regardless of weapon system, they’ll have commonality in adjustment features and ancillary components,” said Tod Litt, Nightforce’s MIL-GOV-LE business development manager.

The Nightforce MIL-SPEC ATACR 4-20 feature Nightforce’s ED glass, 0.1 Mil-Radian adjustment value for both windage and elevation, the Horus Vision TREMOR3 reticle, and a tan, hardcoat anodized finish.

The new optics are to augment multiple systems in the SOCOM inventory and are intended to support the MRGG (Mid-Range Gas Gun) once it is fielded.

For more info: nightforceoptics.com.

Celerant Launches Integrated SMS Text Message Marketing Capabilities

Celerant Technology announced new SMS text message marketing functionality. Through Celerant’s FFL point of sale, dynamic, trigger-based text messages can be created and sent to individual shoppers — helping firearm dealers build and nurture customer relationships, and increase sales.

“As retail evolves, the demand for digital communications to stay in contact with consumers is increasing drastically,” stated Ian Goldman, president and CEO of Celerant Technology. “To provide our firearm dealers with new digital methods of communication, Celerant incorporated SMS text messaging into its retail platform. Not only does this allow dealers to engage with customers more effectively, it allows them to communicate using channels customers are already comfortable and familiar with.”

With Celerant’s FFL point of sale software, text messages can either be automated or sent manually, when needed. Within a customer transaction, cashiers have the ability to select the appropriate message to send to a customer to notify them of status updates in real-time. Messages can also be sent automatically based on triggers and account activity that occurs in the retail system, such as earned membership rewards, repair updates, and reminders for shooting range reservations; triggers will be expanded in a future release to include upcoming sales, delayed orders, rental returns, and more.

Celerant includes several ‘out-of-the-box’ text messages, and additional messages can be easily created from within Celerant’s back office suite. Messages can be personalized using parameters that automatically pull and display data from Celerant’s retail database, such as ‘First Name’, ‘Coupon Code’, ‘Club Name’, ‘Reward Points’, ‘Work Order Number’, and more.

In an upcoming version, Celerant’s SMS text messaging can be used by dealers to communicate with internal staff. Leveraging transaction and workforce data, store managers can be automatically informed about store transfers, loss prevention, voids, large orders, changes in employee shifts and more. Text messages can also be sent to staff when a firearms instructor is needed, or assistance is needed in an aisle or at a register.

For more info: celerant.com/sms-text-messaging.

Brownells Offers Limited Edition Henry Rifle

Brownells will offer a limited number of the special commemorative Henry Golden Boy lever action .22 LR rifles made to honor Iowa’s own Harold “Pie” Keller.

A U.S. Marine during World War II, Keller participated in the iconic American flag raising on Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima. But his involvement in the important historical event was accidentally overlooked until very recently.

The commemorative rifles are exclusively distributed by Crow Shooting Supply with Brownells receiving 10 for sale on Brownells.com and an additional 10 for sale in the Brownells Retail Store in Grinnell, Iowa — only 17 miles from Keller’s hometown of Brooklyn, Iowa.

The rifle is #100-042-669 at Brownells.com and retails for $699.99.

Each Harold “Pie” Keller commemorative Henry lever action has a walnut stock engraved with an image of Keller atop Mount Suribachi with the famous flag raising in the background. The date “February 23, 1945” appears above the design with Keller’s name in a flowing scroll banner beneath the image.

Henry Repeating Arms will contribute $50 of every rifle sold to the Brooklyn Community Foundation 501(c)(3), a local organization raising money to pay for a monument to honor Keller.

In addition, Henry Repeating Arms will auction the “Pie” Keller commemorative rifle with serial number 001 on Gunbroker.com starting at 9:30 a.m. EST on June 14, 2021, which is also Flag Day. Proceeds of that auction will also be used to support erecting the monument to Keller.

“The fact that ‘Pie’ was misidentified for over 76 years is a testament to the man’s humility,” said Anthony Imperato, president and owner of Henry Repeating Arms. “He never came forward as one of the flag raisers, not even to his kids, and I look forward to visiting the memorial to pay my respects to this incredible man in person.”

“We’re honored to recognize a true hometown hero who made history by raising the American flag on the island of Iwo Jima more than 75 years ago,” said Pete Brownell, chairman of Brownells. “The image of the flag-raising has become a symbol of valor and unity in the United States. It’s fitting to have ‘Pie’ Keller’s heroics memorialized on another American icon, the Henry rifle, as it benefits a new memorial to Brooklyn, Iowa’s hometown hero.”

For more info: brownells.com.

Blackhawk’s Carry Positions Guide Offers Tips for Concealed Carry

Blackhawk is once again helping to educate new and experienced gun owners alike on the various carrying positions and products needed to conceal carry in casual, athletic and business environments. As part of the brand’s Your Right 2 Protect (YR2P) initiative, Blackhawk has released three new videos and a downloadable carry positions guide which explains common terminology, holster options and tips.

Available for viewing on its website or on the Blackhawk’s YouTube page, the three newly released videos are designed to assist gun owners with carrying on the go. Hosted by Blackhawk product manager Justin Hoffman, the videos provide instruction and product suggestions for three of the most common carrying situations — casual, athletic and business.

“With over 8 million new gun owners entering the market, the need for continuing education has never been greater,” said Jamie Kistner, senior director of marketing for Blackhawk. “Consistent feedback from our partners and retail channels confirms our suspicion that many of these new guns owners are overwhelmed with industry terms and acronyms when it comes to selecting a new holster. To help overcome this, we’ve shared numerous resources as part of our YR2P program, each one designed to welcome new gun owners into our community while also making them feel safer and more confident.”

For more info: blackhawk.com/your-right-2-protect.