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Gun producer Smith & Wesson is the latest big business to flee the obstructive liberal overreach of a blue state in favor of the friendlier business environment of the South.
Citing an undesirable business climate, the billion-dollar firearms brand will move from Springfield, MA to Maryville, TN, a suburb of Knoxville, in 2023. It will be leaving behind over 170 years of doing business in Massachusetts.
“After an exhaustive and thorough analysis, for the continued health and strength of our iconic company, we feel that we have been left with no other alternative,” Smith & Wesson CEO Mark Smith explained in a statement.
He continued: “[New MA laws] would prevent Smith & Wesson from manufacturing firearms that are legal in almost every state in America and that are safely used by tens of millions of law-abiding citizens every day exercising their Constitutional 2nd Amendment rights, protecting themselves and their families, and enjoying the shooting sports.
“While we are hopeful that this arbitrary and damaging legislation will be defeated in this session, these products made up over 60% of our revenue last year, and the unfortunate likelihood that such restrictions would be raised again led to a review of the best path forward for Smith & Wesson.”
The company also cited quality of life for employees, cost of living, distribution location, and availability of qualified labor as other reasons for pulling the trigger on a move. Smith & Wesson plan to invest around $120 million into their new facilities by 2023.
In 2020, Americans purchased nearly 40 million firearms, a 40 percent rise from the previous year. In the first half of 2021, an estimated 3.2 million American consumers purchased their first firearm, half of which were buyers under 40 years old.