Military Wiki
Type Private company
Industry Firearms
Genre GmbH
Founded Germany
Headquarters Eckernförde, Germany
Area served Worldwide
Products Handguns, rifles
Services Gunsmithing, training
Owner(s) Lüke & Ortmeier Gruppe
Employees >280
Parent Swiss Arms
Subsidiaries SIG Sauer Inc
Website SIG SAUER Homepage

SIG Sauer GmbH is the German subsidiary of German-based manufacturing firm L&O Holding (HQ: Emsdetten, Germany), which also owns Swiss Arms AG. It was founded in 1751 as J. P. Sauer und Sohn GmbH. Initially SIG Sauer Inc was established in 1985 with the name SIGARMS (until October 2007) to import and distribute SIG firearms into the United States. Since 2000 SIG Sauer Inc is organizationally separate from manufacturer SIG Sauer GmbH.


The origins of the original SIG company lies in the Swiss Wagon Factory created in 1853 by Friedrich Peyer im Hof, Heinrich Moser and Conrad Neher.[1] After winning a competition put on by Switzerland's Federal Ministry of Defense, a contract to produce 30,000 muskets was awarded. They changed their name to Schweizerische Industriegesellschaft (SIG), German for "Swiss Industrial Company"(in French regions of Switzerland was known as Société Industrielle Suisse).[1]

Sauer & Sohn

In the 1970s, SIG began work on designing a handgun that would balance price with quality. Swiss law limits the ability of Swiss companies to manufacture firearms and Swiss companies who wish to do this have to do so by using a foreign partner. In the case of SIG they chose the German firm of Sauer & Sohn. The SIG Sauer line of handguns began in 1975 with the SIG Sauer SIG P220. Prior to World War II, Sauer had been primarily a maker of shotguns and hunting rifles. During the war, they produced a handgun, the Sauer 38H, but afterwards had withdrawn from this market. With SIG as their partner/owner, Sauer returned to the business of manufacturing handguns.

SIG also produced a machine gun, the MG 710 which was a general-purpose machine gun chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO and based on the German MG42. It also used roller-delayed blowback as used in the CETME/G3/SIG 510 rifles and sometimes had a muzzle capable of launching rifle grenades. However, the MG 710 had a high price so the weapon was only exported to Bolivia.[2]

SIG Sauer Inc.

In 1985, Sigarms Inc. was created as the American branch of SIG in Tysons Corner, Virginia to import the P220 and P230. In 1987 Sigarms moved to Herndon, Virginia, and in 1990 moved to Exeter, New Hampshire to accommodate new manufacturing.[1]

Sigarms, and its European sister companies, Sauer & Sohn, Blaser, Mauser Jagdwaffen GmbH and Swiss Arms were bought by Michael Lüke and Thomas Ortmeier in October 2000. On October 1, 2007, Sigarms officially changed their name to SIG Sauer Inc.

Ron Cohen, SIG Sauer's president and chief executive officer joined the privately held firm in 2004. Born in 1963 and of Israeli ancestry, Ron Cohen studied at Technion – Israel Institute of Technology and served in the Israeli Defense Forces. Cohen was a commander of a combat unit between 1979 and 1984.[3]

Today, SIG Sauer is the largest of the five companies and one of the largest firearms manufacturing entities in the world.[1] It is also the fastest growing firearms maker in the United States, expanding its operations and increasing sales nearly 50% since 2005.[citation needed] SIG Sauer has recently tripled its work force and invested eighteen million dollars into state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities and equipment.[1]

According to SIG Sauer, one-third of U.S. police use SIG firearms.[4]

SIG Sauer operates a firearms training school in the U.S. led by German specialists, the SIG Sauer Academy, in Epping, New Hampshire.[5]




Machine guns

See also


External links

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