Massachusetts-based armor company BulletBlocker has seen at least a 300 to 400 percent rise in sales since the massacre. Parents began buying the backpacks last Friday in such a frenzy that BulletBlocker Vice President Elmar Uy didn’t believe the numbers at first.
“Part of my daily activity is to monitor the numbers. I was seeing numbers I’d never seen before, and I thought it was a glitch. Our Web traffic was 10 times more than normal.”
Curious, Uy then turned on CNN and found out about what had transpired earlier in the day.
The company’s backpacks start at $199.99. They also offer $175 shields that can slide in to backpacks, laptop bags, and purses, weighing 20 oz.
Uy says he’s also received multiple calls from police officers since Friday, looking to protect their children.
Amendment II, a Utah-based combat apparel company, says their sales have jumped 500 percent since the tragedy. A majority of the orders were for the backpacks or bulletproof shields.
“When we’re selling a few a week, it doesn’t take many to increase your sales,” Amendment II co-owner and sales director Derek Williams said. “But yesterday we had over 200 requests for products.”
Watch an AP report about bulletproof backpacks here:
The company uses a material called RynoHide. Similar to Kevlar, RynoHide is a lighter and more flexible version. While Amendment II mainly sells their products to law enforcement and the military, they began releasing them to civilians after seeing an increased interest at trade shows.
“Parents were saying, ‘Hey, I want one of these for my kid. Can you get me this?” Williams said.
“Even after the Aurora shooting, we didn’t see this. We did see some increase, but nothing even close to what we’re seeing now.”
To better appeal to kids, Amendment offers Disney princess and Avengers models. Customers can also send in their backpacks to make them bulletproof.
On Twitter, people have expressed great sadness that there’s a market for the armor.
They are now selling bulletproof backpacks for children. What is this world coming to?” wrote Ohio pastor Courtney C. Jenkins.