With Colt filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the United States, the future of one of the most storied gun manufacturers is now in question. Although an undeniably sad state of affairs for the brand that practically invented the revolver, and went on to produce everything from finely-made six-shooters to the famous M4 assault rifle, it’s not exactly a huge surprise. Having been slow to adapt to a changing marketplace and being terribly mismanaged by their equity firm overlords, Colt USA missed out almost entirely on the civilian buying craze that followed President Obama’s election, and has adopted an almost H&K-like stance on the civilian market in general.
But given Colt USA has almost entirely ignored the Canadian market for decades now, the bigger question for Canadians is this: How will this news effect Colt Canada’s operations?
Having spoken with sources at both Colt Canada and O’Dell Engineering Ltd., Colt Canada’s civilian distributor for commercial Canadian sales, the word we’re getting is that Colt Canada’s operations will continue with little to no change. Obviously Colt Canada is considered an asset of Colt USA, but in Colt Canada, nee Diemaco’s long history of manufacturing rifles and small arms, they’ve proven both profitable and professional. As a result, while Colt’s Chapter 11 filing could expose Colt’s assets (including Colt Canada) to liquidation, it seems highly unlikely that Colt Canada would ever be shuttered nor parted out and sold off.
Furthermore, Colt Canada holds various contracts with foreign militaries for continued sales and support, and is the Canadian Centre of Excellence for Small Arms; both tasks which have shaped Colt Canada into something of a unique entity in the arms manufacturing world. Financial experts familiar with Colt Canada’s status told Calibre that due to those profitable contracts, even if Colt Canada were to be removed from the Colt Defense family of companies it is unlikely that Colt Canada’s lucrative operations would be altered, due to the longstanding profitable agreements the company is founded on.
For civilians, O’Dell informed us that rifles are still being delivered by Colt Canada, with the latest batch of SA-series rifles having been shipped this morning. Warranty service and parts are also continuing, and are not expected to be effected in any way by Colt’s Chapter 11 filing.