„Pistol is not just a weapon. It is also a toy for big children“
If you visit GRAND POWER in Banská Bystrica - Šalková and Slovenská Ľupča today, you will find out that it is a well-equipped and prosperous company employing over hundered people. However, none of this would be true if its founder and owner, Mr. Jaroslav Kuracina, was not smart and stubborn.
He got the passion for weapons from his grandfather who was a partisan during the WWII. His grandpa was also a hunter; he had a lot of weapons and he used to take his grandchild to a shooting range.
So, the weapons became Jaro´s hobby. He drew his first weapon as a teenager. He continued with his drawing while studying at the Military School. His colleagues used to call him “Piccaso”. One day, he told his superior people would use his guns. Instead of encouragement, he only heard sarcastic comment: “Hell will freeze over first before they do so”. However, the young soldier was not put off by this. His first serious sketches date back to 1994. Just three years later and the first functional prototype, marked Q200 with the serial number E001, was made in Kinex Grand – a subsidiary of Kinex Bytča.
Unfortunately, Považské strojárne went bankrupt, and Kinex Grand did not do better. Therefore, he visited the western neighbours to present them with his ideas. Zbrojovka Uherský Brod demonstrated traditional approach – what is not ours, is not good. Even though, he had important patent in his hands, he lacked money.
Therefore, he addressed the banks. He wanted to borrow USD 10 mil.. And failed. Mostly, he was laughed at or he was put off “If you have the patent and idea, it´s not enough. You are not interested for us.” At the end, private investors – friends helped, and the company grew. It was 2012. The K1 changed into K100 – it got its name after its inventor and constructer. “K” as the first letter in the surname and “100” as the actual weight of Jaroslav Kuracina. However, own production capacities were insufficient; therefore the weapon was made by Kops Detva according to drawings of Jaroslav Kuracina.
At the beginning, he was the only one in his company. Gradually, the company developed, new people came… new ideas… A new production hall was obtained. The K100 Pistol acquired it reputation also among the shooting community. Also, reviews in professional journals did positive advertising for the K100. The company started approaching foreign distributors. Initially, they were very careful, but when they tried the quality of K100, the cooperation started. Negotiations with the company STI International started in 2007. Following the visit of the owner of the company and auditing of our products, the BATF approval was implemented at the US markets, and in 2008, the first weapons were transported to the USA. Those were K 100 Mk6, under the commercial name GP6. The offer was extended to other models, such as STI GP 6C, GP5 and calibre.22 LR called STI GP2.
When Jaroslav Kuracina filed for his patent, they thought he was crazy. However, 12 years passed and it is only Jaroslav Kuracina having a reason to laugh.
Timetable from Development until Mass Production of K100
1994 First drawings of weapon construction were made
1996 Patent application followed by international patent protection
1997 The first functional model gun made in Považské strojárne in Považská Bystrica, labelled Q2000, serial number: E001
1998 First K1 Prototypes made in Kinex Grand – a subsidiary of Kinex Bytča
2000 K1 introduced at the IWA Norimberg Exhibition for the first time
2002 Modification of K1 and change in the name to K100; due to lack of production capacities, the production is taken over by the company Kops s.r.o in Detva for GRAND POWER
2003 A test series of 370 pcs produced by the company GRAND POWER. Second series modified based on testing the test series
2004 The portfolio of the company Grand Power is extended to new starting systems in DAO and QA models. The K100 Economy model, labelled GPC9 and 102R and 105R special automatic models for power compounds
2005 Series 3, the assortment of the new K100 Whisper model and announced advanced study of K100 model Compact (reduced by 15 mm) based on the new finish with plastic handles with emphasis on efficiency
2006 Introduction of the first K100 Mk6 models intended for certification in the U.S.A. followed by completing the certificationIntroduction of P1 semi compact model
2010 Production of the models given planned also in 40S&W and 45ACP.
2011 Introduction of Mk7 handle with interchangeable beck straps
2012 Moving to new premises, factory expands. Launching of new models in calibre .45ACP and 40S&W
2013 Introduction of Mk12 handle wit inovation disassemby system