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targeting innovation

RANGE SYSTEMS

Charlie Baker makes and sells firearms training products. His end users are police officers and military personnel who need to qualify on firearms or learn how to clear a building of bad guys. The company's range products and "shoot houses" protect the lives of U.S. soldiers, police officers and foreign allies. Yet his business has caused more than one banker to frown in misunderstanding.

It's not an easy business to finance. Mr. Baker's banker needs to understand the complexity of long lead government transactions and not flinch at the cash flow swings that are often caused by product being delivered into the United States, Canada, Iraq, Mexico, Japan, Jordan and Great Britain. Mr. Baker joined the family business a decade ago to move it from development to launch. He knew the bankers at Platinum when they were with other banks; he appreciated their no-nonsense advice. Now that these smart bankers are at Platinum, he wouldn't think of banking anywhere else.

"They worked hard to get our business. They toured the plant and even tested our products. They made us an outstanding offer for the credit line we needed. My father-in-law is the majority owner and I've referred him to them for another business deal. They give you the straight scoop: if you're already getting a great deal somewhere else, they won't convince you to switch."

If you need a barometer on firearms training, talk to Mr. Baker. If you need a barometer for banking options, choose Platinum.