B5 Systems

Posts Tagged ‘MSA’

Sneak Peek – New Helmet Line From MSA

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013


MSA’s helmet business, Gallet, is based in France so it’s more than fitting that they would launch a new helmet line during the upcoming Milipol exposition in Paris. The ARCH line will include 4 new models with some very interesting design features. The four variations of this new helmet series are the Gallet TC 800/801/802 and Gallet TC 500, all sporting the proprietary Accessory Rail Combat Helmet (ARCH) system.

Look for full details soon.

Thanks Jack!

Revision Military Announces Purchase of MSA’s North American Helmet Business

Saturday, June 23rd, 2012

Remember way back at the end of March when we told you that MSA was selling their Vermont-based helmet business to someone? Well, we’ve been sitting on our hand for months waiting to tell you that it was Revision all along. Its odd that they announced something this big after 5PM on a Friday. That’s why you’re reading it Saturday. Doesn’t matter who ought it, MSA was smart to unload it. That factory manufactures aramid helmets and both Army and Marine Corps are moving toward polyethylene helmets for the future.

Revision Military has announced the purchase of MSA’s North American ballistic helmet business. The purchase includes the acquisition of MSA’s U.S.-based helmet manufacturing equipment and operations located in Newport, Vermont. The former MSA facility, which specializes in large-scale production of aramid helmets for military and law enforcement, is a complement to Revision’s existing Composite Center of Excellence which outputs highly-specialized, polyethylene composite helmet shells. Having both manufacturing capabilities will enable Revision to meet current aramid helmet program requirements while also aiding customers in their quest for lighter weight, higher performance head protection solutions.

“MSA has proven itself to be a trusted helmet supplier to the U.S. Army with the right people and the right facilities to deliver first-rate, best-value helmet shells,” said Jonathan Blanshay, CEO of Revision. “We are pleased to welcome the approximately 45 Newport-based employees to the Revision family as we expand our offering of leading-edge soldier systems equipment to military customers worldwide.”

Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont commented: “Revision Military has proven they know how to design, manufacture and deliver state-of-the-art soldier protective systems for customers across the globe. I am pleased to see a firm with such skill and experience taking over helmet production for our American soldiers and soldiers across the globe.”

Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin shared in the enthusiasm over Revision’s purchase of the North American helmet manufacturing facility: “This is great news for the city of Newport and the state of Vermont, adding jobs and strengthening the economy. Most importantly, Revision’s announcement is important for our soldiers, who depend on Revision products to keep them safe in the line of duty. We look forward to a continued strong partnership with Jonathan Blanshay and Revision Military.”

Revision has committed orders from the US Army to deliver approximately 100,000 helmets over the 12 months following the acquisition. Additionally, Revision will fulfill the balance of an outstanding contract for 6,000 CG634 helmets to the Canadian DND while continuing to develop current and future helmet business with law enforcement agencies.

This acquisition, coupled with Revision’s extensive international experience is expected to be instrumental in meeting demands for aramid helmets on a global scale. Importantly, being able to manufacture and deliver ACH helmets—the platform upon which Revision’s Batlskin Modular Head Protection System is carried—will allow Revision to deliver completely integrated and fully modular head and face protection packages to its North American and global customers.


Paraclete Closes St Pauls NC Plant

Monday, April 2nd, 2012

Last fall, MSA sold armor and individual equipment producer Paraclete to Protective Products Enterprises, Inc. PPE is owned by Sun Capital Partners, Inc.

Sun Capital also owns Point Blank Solutions Inc which consists of Point Blank Body Armor and PACA Body Armor and we understand that the Paraclete brand will be moved to Florida and incorporated into Point Blank.

Company spokesman Glenn Wiener said in a statement, “The decision to close our St Pauls facility was not an easy one. However, given the growth in our business and our multiple manufacturing facilities, we will be consolidating our manufacturing footprint to better service our global customers.”

With this closure, effective 1 May, 95 employees will lose their jobs.

MSA to Sell Ballistic Helmet Business – Updated

Monday, March 26th, 2012

MSA is selling their American ballistic helmet business unit. MSA purchased Gallet from the French when USSOCOM expressed interest in a predecessor to the helmet that became the Modular Integrated Communications Helmet and then by extension the Army’s Advanced Combat Helmet. This sale only affects their American helmet manufacture and NOT Gallet, their European producer of military and aviation helmets as well as protective helmets for firefighters and construction crews.

This comes as no surprise considering that they recently sold Paraclete, their body armor and load carriage business unit. Additionally, while MSA Gallet was once at the forefront of the the ballistic helmet business, there have been some major shifts in the works over the past two years. First, the Marine Corps and Army are both prepared to transition to a new helmet called the Enhanced Combat Helmet which relies on new production methodologies and new materials (polyethylene rather than the ACH’s aramid construction). Second, new modular designs such as those from Ops-Core are beginning to change the way we look at helmet design. It would take a great deal of investment for MSA to gain the upper hand in either one of these thrust areas. A sale at this point is most likely warranted, especially considering the statement below, from MSA that they want to move in a different direction.

Earlier today MSA announced it has signed a non-binding letter of intent to sell its North America ballistic helmet business. Terms of the deal and the potential purchaser’s name are not being disclosed but MSA expects to complete the transaction within the next 45 days.

The potential sale of this business is something the company has been considering for some time, said Joseph A. Bigler, President of MSA North America. “The decision to move in this direction came down to two factors: alignment with MSA’s long-term business strategy, and pursuing a course of action that provides our associates who work on our North American ballistic helmet line the best opportunity for future success,” Mr. Bigler said.

MSA entered the ballistic helmet market in 2003 following the company’s 2002 acquisition of French helmet manufacturer CFG Gallet, and subsequent contract awards from the U.S. Army to produce Advanced Combat Helmets (ACH), the current standard of issue for the U.S. Army. The company currently manufactures ballistic helmets at its Newport, Vermont manufacturing plant, which employs approximately 40 people.

Over the past five years MSA’s product strategy has increasingly focused on its “core” safety equipment product lines where the company has strong expertise, global R&D resources and vast market presence. MSA’s core product focus emphasizes industrial head protection, respiratory protective equipment, fall protection products, portable gas detection instruments and sensors, and fixed gas- and flame-detection systems.

“The competitive landscape for ballistic helmets has undergone tremendous change over the past several years, with multiple suppliers now intensely competing with MSA for this business,” Mr. Bigler said. “Quite simply, the manufacture of ballistic helmets for North American customers has become an increasingly challenging business for MSA and this drove our decision to explore alternative strategies for the business.”

Some Interesting Connections Surrounding Sale of Paraclete Armor

Monday, December 19th, 2011

In late October MSA announced the sale of Paraclete Armor to PPE. PPE in turn, is owned by Sun Capital Partners, Inc.

What is pretty interesting about the Paraclete sale is that American Recreation Products which includes such brands as Kelty, Sierra Designs, Slumberjack, Ultimate Direction and Royal Robbins, is also owned by Sun Capital. These brands all have an impressive line of military products that we’ve covered in the past here on SSD.

Since ARP’s primarily outdoor focused the vast majority of their products are produced overseas. This can make for rough going if you are interested in military business. Perhaps, thanks to the Sun Capital connection, we will see some production of ARP’s military products by Paraclete. What would be even cooler is if we could see some cross pollination from ARP’s outdoor design expertise to Paraclete’s product offerings.

PPE Purchases Paraclete

Wednesday, October 26th, 2011

Protective Products Enterprises, Inc. (PPE) has completed the purchase of Paraclete from Mine Safety Appliances (MSA). MSA purchased the company from Tim D’Anunzio in 2006. D’Anunzio himself has recently come back to the industry, launching XPX Armor & Equipment last month.

“This sale of our ballistic vest business is something we have seriously considered for some time,” said Joseph A. Bigler, President of MSA North America in a press release. “The decision to move in this direction came down to two factors: alignment with MSA’s long-term business strategy to focus on those products that provide us with the greatest growth opportunities; and pursuing a course of action that we believe provides Paraclete Armor with the best opportunity for future success.”

It is important to note that the sale does not include MSA’s lucrative helmet business purchased from CGF Gallet in 2001.

MSA Finds Buyer for Paraclete

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

Pittsburgh Business Times reports that Mine Safety Appliances has identified a buyer for their Paraclete business unit.

There are a couple of rumors as to who has offered to purchase the company but none have been as of yet substantiated. It will be interesting to see who is buying them and what plans they have for the brand that was at the forefront of releasable armor systems.

BTW, nice pic TR.

New Headset from MSA

Sunday, June 1st, 2008

The Sordin Supreme Pro Neckband is the latest in MSA’s highly successful line of active hearing protection. Just like the Supreme Pro it is still powered by two AAA batteries contained in the same waterproof battery compartment and those two batteries offer around 600 hours of use. There is also an auxiliary jack for 3.5mm plugs and yes it will accommodate an iPod. The low profile head strap is adjustable for both height and tension. The cables are behind the neck so they don’t interfere with helmet wear like more traditional headset designs.

I have been wearing them a lot recently and they do not cause headaches like other systems I have used in the past. They fit well; whether worn alone, with a cap, or under a helmet.
MSA Supreme Pro Neckband HeadsetMSA Supreme Pro Neckband Headset-RearMSA Supreme Pro Neckband Headset with TC2001

These and all MSA products are available from Grey Group Training