Rochester, New York, lost about 200 manufacturing jobs last year when gun maker Thompson/Center Arms was relocated to Massachusetts by its parent company, Smith & Wesson. Now, some former T/C employees have formed a startup business, LHR Sporting Arms, LLC, and plan to manufacturer long-guns for hunters and target shooters.
As Foster's Daily Democrat reported, “four of Thompson Center Arms' former employees-Michael Garland, Mark Laney, Karl Ricker, and Patrick Hanley-are hoping to take advantage of the experienced workforce remaining in [Rochester] to manufacture their own firearms, with a business from scratch who opened in May.”
Hanley, sales and marketing director for LHR Sporting Arms, said a large proportion of former Thompson Center Arms employees were with the company for 30 years or more. When Thompson Center Arms moved out of state, only about seven of its employees transferred to the Springfield, Mass. facility.
“It gives us a great workforce to choose from,” Hanley told Foster's. “The workforce was like a family … We kind of want to see if we can bring it back.”
Plans call for the company's first rifle, “Redemption,” to be unveiled this upcoming winter. By the end of 2013, LHR should have 20 or more employees on board.
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