ABC News’ Kirit Radia reports:
MOSCOW – Looking to update your summer wardrobe? The makers of the AK-47 assault rifle may soon have something in your size.
The company which produces one of the world’s most popular automatic weapons is in talks with the family of the gun’s namesake, Mikhail Kalashnikov, to obtain the rights to the Kalashnikov brand. According to Russian news reports the company says that brand may be worth $10 billion, which they say is on par with Apple, and could grow.
The company hopes that the AK-47′s reputation as a reliable, precise product will help it sell high end products under the same name and perhaps even high end clothing. There is already a Kalashnikov brand vodka and in 2006 AutoVAZ, the Russian carmaker, attempted to produce a Kalashnikov branded SUV.
A company spokesman compared the brand to that of Baretta, another gunmaker, which has successfully marketed its own line of hunting and recreation sportswear.
Analysts cited in one report say Kalashnikov branded clothing may have a hard time selling to a broad spectrum of shoppers, but may have some appeal for outdoorsmen.
The Kalashnikov is the world’s most common small arms. Over 70 million have been produced with various modifications since it was first introduced in 1947. It is a standard issue weapon in dozens of armies, but is more famous as the cheap and readily available weapon of choice for terror and rebel groups around the world.