Back in 2011, the head of the world famous Glock family, Gaston Glock Sr., reportedly cut all ties with his family. Markets never like uncertainty at the top of a company, so firearms industry insiders have kept an eye on the company ever since. Ronn Torossian explainswhere they are today, and what that could mean for one of the world’s most famous gun brands.
The first item of concern is lawsuit Gaston’s ex-wife, Helga, filed against him. The suit claims Gaston has hidden away hundreds of millions of dollars of the family’s cash and is currently cheating her out of a large ownership stake in the company, she says, they built together. Bitter? Definitely … but it is very specific.
That specificity can be a double-edged sword. On one hand, everyone’s PR department understands exactly what they are dealing with. On the other hand, the bullet points offer plenty of room for reporters, bloggers, and industry mouthpieces to speculate, read between the lines, and prognosticate across all forms of media. Suddenly, those very clear and precise battle lines have been spun into countless rabbit trails, rumors, and possibilities—each more outlandish than the last. It’s a worldwide game of telephone.
For the most part, the litigants would be best served by ignoring most of the ancillary nonsense. It doesn’t help—and may compromise—the case. To this point, the jilted wife and her children are keeping it classy. They are conducting controlled and limited press engagements, and offering very little new information. While the lack of salacious details may invite media bottom feeders to glom on, legitimate opinion makers are stuck with limited facts—and limited reasons to give this story top billing.
Torossian believes that strategy will serve the family well in this stage of the dispute. They are presenting themselves as solid, hardworking, and professional. They have a grievance, and, reluctantly, have to pursue that grievance. At the center of Helga’s claim is her story of being a hardworking mother who helped her husband establish an empire while still finding time to raise her kids. That those kids have sided with her speaks volumes … particularly in the world of consumer PR.
That may not help Helga Glock in the courtroom, but there’s precious little better in the world of public relations.