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„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.