Cold Steel, Liemke Thermal Optics Change Hands

posted on December 24, 2020

Renowned knife manufacturer Cold Steel has been acquired by GSM Outdoors, parent company of Birchwood Casey, Walker’s Game Ear, SME, Viking Solutions and other brands familiar to firearm enthusiasts. The company, which was established in 1980 by Lynn Thompson, creates tools for everyday carry with the kind of strength and dependability that make them a popular choice among members of the military, law enforcement, emergency services personnel, self-defense practitioners and others. It also offers fixed blades, swords, sabers, pole-arms and halberds, in addition to hunting gear, spears, blowguns, axes, machetes and tomahawks.

Blaser Group acquired Liemke Thermal Optics this month. The latter firm, headquartered in Bielefeld, Germany, launched in 2008 and began building its own line of night vision in 2014. Today it has grown to become the dominant thermal imaging brand in that country, offering lines of handheld units as well as many designed specifically for gun mounting. Blaser Group is the official U.S. importer of German firearms from Blaser, J.P. Sauer and Mauser, guns from Great Britain’s John Rigby and it also handles Minox products.

“We are excited to add this premium brand of well-priced, high-performance thermal optics to our product portfolio,” said Jason Evans, CEO of Blaser Group. “Liemke is at the forefront of technology, delivering the precision and performance of German engineering, making it a top choice for hunting, game detection and nighttime shooting applications.”

“Cold Steel is an iconic, best-in-class brand that Lynn Thompson has built over the last 40 years by pushing the needle on innovation and new testing standards,” said Eddie Castro, CEO of GSM Outdoors. “His users are some of the most loyal followers I’ve ever seen, and a testament to what he has built. The team and I are highly enthusiastic about bringing this legendary brand into the GSM Family and broadening our current line of cutlery offerings.”


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