By The Numbers: Bianchi Holsters

Bianchi LogoA garage seems like an appropriate setting for the birth of a rock band, not a future multi-million dollar company. Yet, like Mattel and Apple Inc., Bianchi International began in 1958 with John Bianchi, a full-time Southern California police officer, simply constructing affordable quality holsters in his garage.

Follow the quantitative history of what later became an industry leader in holster creation and innovation and is now a part of the Safariland family.

  • 1960 – The year Bianchi’s innovative thumb snap first seen on the Model 5BH/5BHL took the holster market by storm.
  • $36 million – Bianchi International’s sales in 2004.
  • 4 – Years of research that went into its synthetic universal military system holster design, or M12, which was adopted by the U.S. Army in 1984.
  • 1992 – Bianchi introduced its AccuMold holsters, accessories and belts in this year, and these products continue to be its staple in the gun holster industry.
  • 32 – Years the NRA Bianchi Cup Championship pistol tournament has been scouting the best marksmen in the world.
  • 110,000 – Total amount of square feet in Bianchi International headquarters in Temecula, Calif., and its additional manufacturing facility in Imperial Valley, Calif.
  • 20 million – The estimate of how many belts and holsters John Bianchi designed and manufactured during his career.
  • 1 – Number of books authored by John Bianchi. Bluesteel & Gunleather, his one and only book published in 1978, gives an extensive history of gun holsters and its continuing development.
  • 1983 – Year Bianchi acquired Gregory Mountain Products, an external-frame backpack manufacturer.
  • $60 million – Amount Armor Holdings Inc. paid for Bianchi International in 2004.
  • 105 – Miles separating headquarters and Columbia, Mo., the location of Bianchi’s first pistol-shooting tournament.
  • 40 – Percentage of Bianchi’s business that came from Gregory packs in 1993.
  • 1975 – The year that Bianchi produced its one-millionth holster.

And now it’s time to check out a western-inspired Bianchi holster that was first produced in the 1980s.

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