Last week, the Czechoslovak Group (CSG), a large conglomerate based in Prague with defense, aerospace, mobility, ammunition, and business projects segments, announced that it had entered into an agreement to acquire Vista Outdoor’s Sporting Products division, which includes American ammunition brands CCI, Federal Premium, Hevi-Shot, Remington, and Speer, for $1.91 billion.
If approved by shareholders and regulators, the deal is expected to close in 2024, and it will mark CSG’s largest acquisition to date. In 2022, the holding company, which is 100-percent owned by 30-year-old Czech billionaire Michael Strnad, purchased Italian ammunition manufacturer Fiocchi Munizioni.
According to Vista Outdoor, Jason Vanderbrink will remain the CEO of the Sporting Products division, which will maintain its headquarters in Anoka, Minnesota, as well as its 4,000 employees spread across four U.S. factories.
The Sporting Products division will become a wholly owned — and privately held — subsidiary of CSG. The proposed sale came as a surprise to shareholders, as Vista Outdoor had previously announced that it would spin off its Sporting and Outdoor Products divisions into two separate, publicly traded companies. Shares of Vista Outdoor plummeted nearly 24 percent after the announcement of the sale to CSG. Before inking the proposed sale, Vista had planned to rename its Sporting Products side “The Kinetic Group.” The company’s Outdoor Products side, with brands such as CamelBak, Bell helmets, and Fox Racing, will be renamed “Revelyst.”