Defensive, target, and hunting ammunition manufacturer Fiocchi has selected a 281-acre site in the Port of Little Rock, AR for a new ammunition primer manufacturing facility. Representing a $41.5 million investment and a 120-person workforce expansion, the new production operation will pave the way for future growth in Arkansas and provide much-needed primer supply relief for the broader ammunition manufacturing segment.
One of only six primer manufacturing operations in the U.S., the new facility will be the only dedicated lead-free primer plant in the world. Missouri-based Fiocchi evaluated five locations across three states for the expansion. Little Rock was selected as the preferred location after a thorough site selection search that evaluated real estate compatibility, logistical infrastructure, workforce capability, and support from state and local leadership.
The project comes on the heels of three major acquisitions by Fiocchi over the last two years, including premium shotshell manufacturers Baschieri & Pellagri and Lyalvale Express, plus a division of Grandeur Fasteners of Little Rock, AR, which paved the way for the new primer manufacturing facility.
“This groundbreaking represents another significant milestone in Fiocchi’s long-term plan to strengthen and expand our manufacturing capabilities and to bolster primer supplies not only for Fiocchi products but also to increase supplies for the ammunition manufacturing industry at large,” said Maurizio Negro, Fiocchi Group CEO. “We sincerely appreciate the support of Governor Hutchinson, Secretary of Commerce Mike Preston, Jack Thomas of the Little Rock Chamber of Commerce, Bryan Day of the Port of Little Rock, and all partners involved who helped make this possible.”
Part of Fiocchi’s ongoing vertical integration strategy, the new primer facility will allow the company to meet internal primer supply needs, focus on its low environmental impact initiatives, and present second-sourcing opportunities for industry contracts. Fiocchi is a leader in lead- and heavy-metal-free primers and is the only manufacturer of lead-free primers to receive NATO qualification. The new facility compliments Fiocchi’s major commitments to the sustainable technology segment, which includes lead-free projectiles, non-toxic shot, and biodegradable components under the company’s EnviroShield initiative.
“Our focus on Little Rock for this major expansion comes from an ideal alignment of several considerations,” said Fiocchi of America President and CEO Anthony Acitelli. “Aside from our strong ties with the state and local governments, Arkansas has a highly experienced and energetic labor force to call upon. Furthermore, streamlined logistics with other plant operations combined with management and supply chain efficiencies make Little Rock a logical choice. We will also benefit from logistical synergies with our ammo manufacturing industry partners.”
Fiocchi will begin construction next year, and expects to begin the first stage of operations at the new Little Rock primer manufacturing facility in early 2025.
“Today I am pleased to celebrate Fiocchi’s growth, which is also a demonstration of the continued expansion of the firearms and ammunition industry in our state,” said Governor Asa Hutchinson. “Over the past several years, my team and I have had opportunity to build a relationship with Fiocchi—meeting with Fiocchi leadership during our visits to the SHOT Show, which is the industry’s leading trade show, and even during my most recent trade mission to Europe. Fiocchi’s decision to grow in Arkansas speaks to the significance of maintaining the business-friendly climate that Arkansas is becoming so well known for.”
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“For the past eight years, Governor Hutchinson has made firearms and ammunition a priority industry to grow and diversify our state’s economy,” said Arkansas Department of Commerce Secretary Mike Preston. “Governor Hutchinson was the first Arkansas governor to attend the SHOT Show, and he has led an Arkansas delegation to the show every year since then in an effort to actively pursue and welcome premier companies like Fiocchi to Arkansas. For more than a century, Fiocchi has been a leader in its industry, and we have witnessed firsthand their commitment and excellence in business. This expansion will help Fiocchi reach more customers as they continue to strengthen their brand throughout the region, and we are excited to celebrate alongside them today.”