GMK

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by GMK's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from GMK is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

www.gmk.co.uk

BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
18 | BURNLEY FC IN THE COMMUNITY
May in April
The centre was officially opened
in April 2019 by the then prime
minister, Rt Hon Theresa May MP.
She said: “This is a fantastic facility
and it’s a great credit to Burnley FC
in the Community for what they have
done in working with others and
supportingthis.
“I don’t know of any other football
club who has developed a facility
like this and provided sporting
opportunities for local children that
they wouldn’t have elsewhere.
“It’s hugely important to have such a
regeneration project in the heart of the
community, and Burnley Football Club
can be proud in proving that football
and sport can be a force for good”.
One club for all
With our HQ at the Turf Moor stadium,
we now deliver work that touches the
lives of a wide range of people. In the
last season alone, we have utilised the
unique reach of the Burnley FC brand –
the most loved in our community – to
help integrate Syrian refugee families,
teach young carers how to cook, lift
young people out of unemployment,
encourage women to play football
every week, offer a welcoming space
for up to 60 socially isolated senior
citizens each week and support
hundreds of schoolchildren with their
mental wellbeing.
In our five years of operations, we have
now invested over £10 million into
our community with a significant £3.5
million of that coming directly from the
Premier League – a figure that goes
some way to showcasing the scale of
the club’s reach into its community.
We are now a crucial part of the
Burnley FC family. We are part of a
culture that is defined by the concept
that the football club is for everyone
– “One Club for All” – from the first
team and academy players through to
staff, community participants and fans.
Football is so much more that the 90
minutes on a Saturday afternoon.
For us, it is about wielding the
responsibility of our standing as a top-
flight club and using that as a force
for good on the ground, every day, to
help make our community a happier,
healthier and more equal place for all.
We are part of
a culture that is
defined by the
concept that
the football
club is for
everyone –
“One Club for
All” – from the
first team and
academy
players through
to staff,
community
participants
andfans
Club captain Ben Mee
launches the Schools
Mental Wellbeing Project
19GMK |
LEISURE & TOURISM
Managing Director Karl Waktare
enjoying some sporting clay
shooting
Beretta’s stunning SL3
Premium shotgun
With almost 50 years’ experience, GMK is the UK’s
distributor of Beretta firearms, as well as the country’s
number-one importer and distributor of shotguns,
rifles, ammunition and accessories for shooting. Director Karl
Waktare tells
The Parliamentary Review
that its services don’t
stop there: under the GMK Tactical division, the company also
supplies firearms and ammunition to UK law enforcement
bodies and the Ministry of Defence.
Gun making is an ancient industry and the Beretta company is part of that history.
Founded in 1526, it is still owned by the Beretta family, which makes it one of the
oldest privately owned businesses in the world. Its guns have stood the test of time
too – in the first five James Bond novels, 007 carries with him his trusty Beretta
handgun. Until recent times, the Beretta M9 was the chosen sidearm for the USarmy.
The Beretta group has a turnover approaching three quarters of a billion euros and
owns multiple brands which manufacture shotguns, rifles, ammunition, binoculars,
rifle scopes and clothing. Here in the UK, GMK Ltd are 60 per cent owned by
Beretta and act as sole distributors.
GMK
As a company, we operate through three sales divisions. The largest and most
important by far is the wholesale distribution to our network of around 250
independent retailers. This was how the business was established back in 1971
by Swedish immigrant Bjorn Waktare. The Waktare family still retain 40 per cent
FACTS ABOUT
GMK
»Directors: Karl Waktare, Oskar
Waktare, Franco Beretta,
Nicola Perniola, Joerg Prediger
»Founded in 1971
»Headquarters in Fareham,
Hampshire
»Services: Distribution of
shooting sports products
»No. of employees: 64
GMK
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
20 | GMK
ownership, with Bjorn’s two sons at
the helm of day-to-day management.
In order to raise the profile of our
brands, we opened a flagship store in
London in 2005. The Beretta Gallery
sells shotguns and specialist shooting
apparel, as well as luxury clothing and
accessories befitting the premium St
James location. The gallery also has a
concession in Harrods.
GMK has a third sales division
specialising in selling to government
bodies, often through tenders. It began
selling Federal ammunition to the UK
police’s firearms departments in 2004.
This division has grown steadily and
has supplied Benelli semi-automatic
shotguns and Steiner binoculars to the
British army. We now offer a large and
varied product range to our contract
customers beyond specialist firearm
products. For example, we offer ASP
batons and handcuffs not only to the
police but also to Border Force.
Shooting for sport
Following the Dunblane tragedy in
the late 1990s, private ownership of
handguns was banned in the UK and
as such is not part of our business.
The shotgun has long been popular
in the UK due to the variety of small
game, such as rabbits, grouse and
the native grey partridge. Indeed, an
entire gun-making industry grew up
in London and Birmingham, although
only a few high-end brands remain
today. Beretta occupies the middle
ground in the UK shotgun market.
Prices for a basic model start at just
over £1,000, while top-end hand-
engraved deluxe models can cost in
excess of £70,000.
While game-shooting is often
considered a pursuit of the rich, the
majority of those who pursue the sport
enjoy it on a far smaller scale. Local
communities and gamekeepers co-
operate with one another, and these
same people often help to protect
farmers’ crops by controlling our vast
pigeon population.
Clay pigeon shooting began as a way
of “getting your eye in” in preparation
for the shooting season but has
grown steadily in popularity since the
1960s and is now a sport in its own
right. The UK has a proud Olympic
shooting record, as does Beretta,
whose shotguns collected ten of the
possible 15 shotgun medals at the
Rio Olympics. There are currently over
600,000 registered shotgun certificate
holders in the UK.
Target rifle shooting, another Olympic
sport, is also popular in the UK. Long-
range shooting is particularly popular
and challenges the marksman to
calculate bullet drop and wind effect
over 400 metres. We also sell the
German Steiner binoculars and scopes
to this market and offer the world’s
largest ammunition brand, Federal,
which we import from the US.
Above: Beretta Gallery,
St James, London
Below: Amber Hill,
British Olympic hopeful
for Tokyo, sponsored by
Beretta
The UK has a
proud Olympic
shooting
record, as
does Beretta,
whose
shotguns
collected ten
of the possible
15 shotgun
medals at the
Rio Olympics
BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
20 | GMK
ownership, with Bjorn’s two sons at
the helm of day-to-day management.
In order to raise the profile of our
brands, we opened a flagship store in
London in 2005. The Beretta Gallery
sells shotguns and specialist shooting
apparel, as well as luxury clothing and
accessories befitting the premium St
James location. The gallery also has a
concession in Harrods.
GMK has a third sales division
specialising in selling to government
bodies, often through tenders. It began
selling Federal ammunition to the UK
police’s firearms departments in 2004.
This division has grown steadily and
has supplied Benelli semi-automatic
shotguns and Steiner binoculars to the
British army. We now offer a large and
varied product range to our contract
customers beyond specialist firearm
products. For example, we offer ASP
batons and handcuffs not only to the
police but also to Border Force.
Shooting for sport
Following the Dunblane tragedy in
the late 1990s, private ownership of
handguns was banned in the UK and
as such is not part of our business.
The shotgun has long been popular
in the UK due to the variety of small
game, such as rabbits, grouse and
the native grey partridge. Indeed, an
entire gun-making industry grew up
in London and Birmingham, although
only a few high-end brands remain
today. Beretta occupies the middle
ground in the UK shotgun market.
Prices for a basic model start at just
over £1,000, while top-end hand-
engraved deluxe models can cost in
excess of £70,000.
While game-shooting is often
considered a pursuit of the rich, the
majority of those who pursue the sport
enjoy it on a far smaller scale. Local
communities and gamekeepers co-
operate with one another, and these
same people often help to protect
farmers’ crops by controlling our vast
pigeon population.
Clay pigeon shooting began as a way
of “getting your eye in” in preparation
for the shooting season but has
grown steadily in popularity since the
1960s and is now a sport in its own
right. The UK has a proud Olympic
shooting record, as does Beretta,
whose shotguns collected ten of the
possible 15 shotgun medals at the
Rio Olympics. There are currently over
600,000 registered shotgun certificate
holders in the UK.
Target rifle shooting, another Olympic
sport, is also popular in the UK. Long-
range shooting is particularly popular
and challenges the marksman to
calculate bullet drop and wind effect
over 400 metres. We also sell the
German Steiner binoculars and scopes
to this market and offer the world’s
largest ammunition brand, Federal,
which we import from the US.
Above: Beretta Gallery,
St James, London
Below: Amber Hill,
British Olympic hopeful
for Tokyo, sponsored by
Beretta
The UK has a
proud Olympic
shooting
record, as
does Beretta,
whose
shotguns
collected ten
of the possible
15 shotgun
medals at the
Rio Olympics
21GMK |
LEISURE & TOURISM
Countryside pursuit
Most of the countryside is farmed,
and the relationship between various
shooting activities and farming is
mutually beneficial. Effective pest
control and diversification makes farms
more viable businesses.
Shooting is more than just a hobby;
it is a passion embedded in a love of
the countryside. In short, those who
shoot in the countryside are committed
to preserving it. The various shooting
disciplines are enjoyed by a wide
spectrum of people.
Current estimates suggest that there
are between one and a half and two
million deer in the UK. It is believed that
without culling, this population would
double every three years, which would
be especially difficult for the vulnerable
small trees that are a popular food
source for them. There is also a healthy
fox population feasting on game birds
and lambs, among other prey.
GMK markets the Beretta-owned,
Finnish-manufactured Sako and
Tikka rifles to the UK’s 180,000
firearms owners, many of whom help
to manage the country’s deer and
foxpopulation.
Best shot
As a business, we are subject to the
strength of the economy. As we
import into the UK from abroad,
the strength of the pound has a
big impact on our margin. New
laws are another factor which can
hugely affect our business. Sudden
reactionary legislation can create a
great deal of uncertainty among our
customer base.
For understandable reasons, our
products are subject to much
regulation, and we accept that many
of our products are hard to understand
unless you have an interest in them.
We therefore urge government to
work closely with our trade bodies
when looking at legislation.
We understand that we operate
within a niche market and that, as a
result, our work is not always easy.
Maintaining a strong position in the
market is therefore essential to our
survival. We hope that the future
will bring us continued success and
allow us to continue to work with
our suppliers as we pursue future
productopportunities.
Shooting is
more than just
a hobby; it is a
passion
embedded in
a love of the
countryside
The Beretta headquarters in
the Gardone val Trompia, Italy
Detailed hand engraving of the finest
Berettas can take over 200 hours

www.gmk.co.uk

This article was sponsored by GMK. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss.

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss

Even by the standards of the day –this has been one of the most exciting and unpredictable years in British politics.

The leadership election we’ve just seen marks a huge moment in our country’s history. This government is taking a decisive new direction, embracing the opportunities of Brexit and preparing our country to flourish outside the EU.

As international trade secretary, I’ll be driving forward work on the free trade agreements that are going to be a priority for the government. Free trade isn’t just an abstract concept bandied around by technocrats. It is crucial for a strong economy and for the ability of families to make ends meet. Free trade benefits people in every part of our country, as British firms export to new markets and people doing the weekly shop have access to a wider choice of goods at lower prices.

The essence of free trade is in the title: freedom. It’s about giving people the power to exchange their goods without heavy government taxation or interference. Commerce and free exchange are the engine room of prosperity and social mobility. I’m determined to tackle the forces who want to hold that back.

One of my priorities is agreeing an exciting new free trade deal with the US, building on the great relationship between our two countries and the Prime Minister and US President. But I’ll also be talking to other partners including New Zealand, Australia and fast-growing Asian markets.

And with the EU too, we want a friendly and constructive relationship, as constitutional equals, and as friends and partners in facing the challenges that lie ahead – a relationship based on a deep free trade agreement. Our country produces some of the world’s most successful exports, and the opportunity to bring these to the rest of the world should make us all excited about the future. It is this excitement, optimism and ambition which I believe will come to define this government.

For too long now, we have been told Britain isn’t big or important enough to survive outside the EU – that we have to accept a deal that reflects our reduced circumstances. I say that’s rubbish. With the right policies in place, we can be the most competitive, free-thinking, prosperous nation on Earth exporting to the world and leading in new developments like AI. To do that, we’ll give the brilliant next generation of entrepreneurs the tools they need to succeed. Since 2015, there has been a staggering 85 per cent rise in the number of businesses set up by 18 to 24 year olds – twice the level set up by the same age group in France and Germany. We’ll help them flourish by championing enterprise, cutting taxes and making regulation flexible and responsive to their needs.

As we do that, we’ll level up and unite all parts of the UK with great transport links, fibre broadband in every home and proper school funding, so everyone shares in our country’s success.

2019 has been the year of brewing economic and political revolution. 2020 will be the year when a revitalised Conservative government turbo charges the economy, boosts prospects for people across the country, and catapults Britain back to the forefront of the world stage.



Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss
Secretary of State for International Development