PALM BEACH, Fla., Feb. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Global Digital Solutions (PINKSHEETS: GDSI), a company that is positioning itself as a leader in providing knowledge-based and culturally attuned social consulting and security-related solutions in unsettled areas, announced today that its majority shareholder, Richard J. Sullivan, provided $300,000 in collateralized assets to secure a $750,000 bridge loan that will facilitate the planned merger with Airtronic USA ("Airtronic").
Sullivan described his $300,000 infusion as "a vote of confidence" in Airtronic and the company's President and CEO, Dr. Merriellyn Kett.
Because Airtronic is currently a "debtor in possession" under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code, the $750,000 bridge loan from GDSI to Airtronic was subject to approval from the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Approval for the bridge loan was granted on October 18, 2012.
On August 20, 2012, the GDSI and Airtronic announced that they had signed a letter of intent to enter into good faith discussions involving a potential strategic combination in which Airtronic would be acquired by GDSI. Having completed those good faith discussions, the companies signed a merger agreement and reorganization plan on October 16, 2012. The agreement, which is also subject to Bankruptcy Court approval, calls for Airtronic to continue to operate as a subsidiary of GDSI.
"We're very excited that we have completed this critical phase of the merger process between GDSI and Airtronic and we're looking forward to completing the process as quickly as possible," said Sullivan, who will become chairman and CEO of GDSI after the acquisition is completed.
"It's important to note," Sullivan added, "that Airtronic instituted a policy twelve years ago never to sell weapons to the domestic U.S. commercial and/or retail market. And I applaud Dr. Kett and her team for having the vision to embrace that policy. Airtronic only supplies these weapons to the U.S. military and designated militaries abroad. That's an important distinction that will continue to be a vital part of Airtronic's business model going forward."
Dr. Kett, Airtronic's CEO and President, also commented on the bridge loan: "I'm very grateful to Dick Sullivan for his vote of confidence and I'm delighted that we have taken this important step in the merger process, which we believe will be very beneficial to both companies and to our shareholders and customers."
Once the merger is finalized, Dr. Kett is expected to continue serving as CEO of Airtronic.
More About Richard J. Sullivan
Dick Sullivan is an entrepreneurial pioneer. He served as Chairman and CEO of Applied Digital Solutions, where he executed a technology rollup involving 42 acquisitions that succeeded in increasing the company's share price from $2.50 to a peak of $18 per share. During Sullivan's decade-long tenure as Chairman and CEO, Applied Digital was one of the highest volume traded stocks on NASDAQ. Sullivan also served as Chairman and CEO of Digital Angel Corporation and led the effort to spin off VeriChip Corporation. In 1970, he was a founding member of the management team of Manufacturing Data Systems, Inc., which listed at $7.50 per share and was sold to Schlumberger N.V. in 1980 at $65 per share.
More About Merriellyn Kett, PhD
Airtronic's CEO and President joined the company in 2003 as a partner and helped to refocus the business on several essential battlefield weapons, including the M203 40mm Grenade Launcher – one of the most widely used grenade launchers in the world – the .50 cal. Machine Gun, the MK 19 Grenade Machine Gun, and most recently the MK 777, a shoulder-fired recoilless rifle that is light, lethal, and affordable. Dr. Kett received her doctorate in analytic philosophy from DePaul University in Chicago, IL, and spent a year studying at the Sorbonne in Paris, France. Before joining Airtronic in 2003, she worked in infrastructure development in China, building a metallurgical coking plant in Shanxi Province.
About Global Digital Solutions, Inc.
Global Digital Solutions is refocusing its business strategy on providing knowledge-based and culturally attuned societal consulting and security-related solutions in unsettled areas. For more information please visit http://www.gdsi.co.
About Airtronic USA, Inc.
Airtronic is an electro-mechanical engineering design and manufacturing company. It provides small arms and small arms spare parts to the U.S. Department of Defense, foreign militaries, and the law enforcement market. The company also manufactures medical, avionics, and telecommunications original equipment. The company's products include grenade launchers, rocket propelled grenade launchers, grenade launcher guns, flex machine guns, grenade machine guns, rifles, and magazines. Founded in 1990, the company is based in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. On May 16, 2012, the voluntary petition of Airtronic, Inc. for liquidation under Chapter 7 was converted to Chapter 11 reorganization. The company had filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy on March 13, 2012. For more information, please visit www.Airtronic.net.
Statements about the company's expectations, including revenue and earnings and all other statements in this press release, other than historical facts, are "forward looking" statements and are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward looking statements involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time. The company's actual results could differ materially from expected results. In reflecting subsequent events or circumstances, the company undertakes no obligation to update forward looking statements.
Richard J. Sullivan
SOURCE Global Digital Solutions, Inc.