Dumb Idea of the Week: Bloomberg Should Buy Remington
Jon Stokes 05.15.18
Here is an idea that Andrew Ross Sorkin, famous writer on all things finance, has seriously floated in the NY Times: Bloomberg or some coalition of “social responsible” financiers should buy Remington and turn it into a smart gun and pro-gun-control gun company.
A reimagined Remington with a new management and mandate could develop smart-gun technology. It could back fingerprint technology meant to prevent anyone who is not the gun’s owner from shooting it, a measure that could greatly reduce suicides and the potential for guns to be stolen. It could add an identity stamp to ammunition fired from any of its guns. It could also establish and standardize responsible sales policies for retailers to sell its firearms.
What would happen, for instance, if a consortium were to come together so that the banks offered the buyer a below-market loan, giving a socially responsible investor the advantage of a lower cost of capital? What would happen if one of the big retail chains like Walmart and Dick’s — both of which have already established that they only want to sell guns in a responsible way — were to guarantee distribution, sales and marketing support?
I actually hope somebody is dumb enough to try this. “Let’s take a gun company that Wall Street has already wrecked by saddling it with debt and reputational problems, and ‘turn it around’ by remaking it as the world’s first anti-gun gun company.”
Of course, banks aren’t totally insane, nor are they in the habit of lighting money on fire. So it won’t happen. But a man can dream.