A grant-and-loan package valued at $6 million has been approved by the Wyoming Business Council to help gun manufacturer Gunwerks expand in Cody, WY. As part of the agreement, five acres of property purchased by the company will be deeded to an area economic development organization, which will in turn issue a lease for the firearm firm to build/expand its facility.
The state’s total commitment is for $3 million in loans and another $3 million in grants. In return, Gunwerks anticipates not only maintaining its current roster of 58 employees, but adding another 52 jobs in the next five years. According to the Cody Enterprise, the deal is contingent on the company finding financing for its equipment purchases, estimated to be $5.03 million during the same period.
The move will also help the company streamline operations, by consolidating under a single roof. The majority of the company’s manufacturing is currently done in Ohio and Utah.
Nurturing firearm-associated jobs and industry is nothing new for the region. Last year the state approved a $3 million grant to help HIVIZ to build a second, 20,000-square foot facility in Laramie, WY. Efforts by Wyoming officials were also instrumental in attracting Magpul to relocate from Colorado, where legislators had passed restrictive laws that made many of the company’s products illegal for civilian shooters.
Aside from producing firearms and offering a customized lineup, Gunwerks also offers a Long Range University, with courses tailored for various levels of expertise. They also concentrate on several different disciplines in the sport and many of the classes are conducted in Wyoming.
“We’re not just a gun company,” CEO Aaron Davidson and co-founder of Gunwerks told the Cody Enterprise. “We’re not necessarily a manufacturing company. We’re an innovation company.”Wyoming isn’t the only state aggressively courting firearm businesses, either.