(privatized in 2005)
|Headquarters||Ramat HaSharon, Israel|
Number of employees
|Over 500 in Israel|
It was founded in 1933. Formerly owned by the State of Israel, in 2005, the Small Arms Division of IMI was privatized and renamed IWI.
IWI is one of the world's most famous and bestselling military arms manufacturers. The Magen division rose to international prominence in the 1950s, as the creator of the Uzi, of which over 10 million would be produced, netting billions of dollars for the company. Subsequent well known military exports have included the Negev light machine gun, Galil assault rifle, Tavor assault rifle, and the DAN .338 sniper rifle.
IWI develops and manufactures guns used by armies and law enforcement agencies around the world.
For many decades, IWI and the Magen division of Israeli Military Industries before it, has manufactured its weapons in Ramat HaSharon. The factory has for many years been regarded an important component of the manufacturing sector in Ramat HaSharon. In 2017, IWI announced it is planning to construct a new factory in Kiryat Gat, to which its manufacturing will re-locate when completed in 2020. The new Kiryat Gat factory, whose construction will cost NIS 180 million, will employ 560 full-time production workers and engineers on its assembly lines.
IWI owns several factories overseas, for the manufacture of weapons for local markets. In India, IWI is establishing a joint-manufacturing center with Punj Lloyd (with IWI owning 49% of the plant, and Punj Lloyd owning 51% of the plant), which will be India's first privately-owned small-arms manufacturing plant. The factory will manufacture firearms for the Indian army. IWI said in 2017, that it expects tenders with the Indian army in the region of $200-300 million.
IWI's weapon systems include the Uzi submachine gun, Jericho and Barak handguns, the Negev light machine gun, Galil and Tavor assault rifle lines. The Galil is a compact assault rifle. The Negev is IWI's main light machine gun. The Jericho 941 is a semi-automatic pistol. The Tavor is a bullpup assault rifle.
In the 1980s an American firearms designer, Magnum Research, contracted IWI to re-design and manufacture a Magnum caliber (.44 Magnum, .357 Magnum and .50 AE), semi-automatic pistol. The result was the Desert Eagle.
In 2014, IWI launched the IWI DAN .338 sniper rifle. The rifle is designed for light weight and compact carry. The chassis is made of aluminum alloy, the heavy fluted free floating barrel is 737 mm (29?) long. The new rifle weighs 6.9 Kg (15.2 pounds) without magazine, ammo, telescope and mount. The IWI DAN is a bolt action sniper rifle chambered in the 0.338 Lapua Magnum, with effective range of 1200 meters and sub-MOA accuracy.
In 2014, IWI's DAN .338 sniper rifle was selected as the new sniper rifle of the British Army's SAS special forces unit. The DAN sniper rifle has been used by the SAS against ISIS commanders in Syria and Iraq.
IWI offers anti-terrorism training to Israeli citizens and contracts its services to outside countries requiring security training and anti-terror training to protect assets and high-ranking officials. IWI collaborates with the Metropolitan College of New York (MCNY) in New York City, which offers a classroom-based MA degree in Public Administration, Emergency Management and Homeland Security.