Sitanin Uusushi had worked for a large armaments firm within Zen Armaments as a low-rung designer for about eight years. During that time, the lanky Yamataian was responsible for no major designs and no breakthroughs in technology. His only creation, the Folding Light Carbine (FLC), was considered useless for both civilian and military use. “We have REAL sub-machineguns!” his superiors said. “We don't need your pistol-rifle.” One of the mid-sized companies of Zen Armaments saw some interest in the strange weapon, but held back support.
However, after Uusushi threatened to leave Zen Arms, the owner of the interested company, also one of the collective's governing members, brokered an agreement that loaned out some more-dated machining equipment to Uusushi. The catch was simple – all designs and weapons produced by him were the property of Zen Arms for the next 10 years. Zen Arms' governing board agreed to the terms, as did Uusushi.
Yuko Langrova, Uusushi's fiancee, ran a small dry-cleaning business on one of the lower levels in eastern Democratic Imperium of Nepleslia. In order to house the machining tools, she drained her savings and bought the two levels above her store. With the help of the governing member who brokered the agreement, Uusushi was given enough starting material to produce a trial run of 200 FLCs under the Zen Arms brand. They were sold for 357 KS, a price Uusushi, with Langrova advising him, haggled from Zen Arms.
As it was only Uusushi in the beginning, he finished the production run in 280 days. The weapons, distributed to various gun shops in the area, were sold out within two weeks, thanks in part to Langrova's clever advertising through her connections. No single entity bought more than 20, according to data she collected from the various shops selling them. Apparently, most of the sales were to citizens looking for an effective (and concealable) means of protection from gangs.
The broker was impressed enough. Uusushi was given the option of becoming a full member of Zen Arms, and the benefits such an option came with, but he rejected the idea. With the help of Langrova, now his wife, Uusushi asked to be made a partial member of Zen Arms and be allowed to sell under his own name. “Affiliate” status hadn't been granted in some time. But with profits starting to sink due to Ketsurui Zaibatsu's Type 28 MPP being released on Nepleslia, Zen Arms hastily agreed to a 60/40 profit split with Zen Arms as the majority, and allowed Uusushi to produce on his own. In return, Zen Arms paid a sum far below market value for the license to copy any of Uusushi's models and needed only to provide hard-to-find material for the FLC (essentially the tritium for the nightsights).
Because many of his weapons would be sold in the poor Slav district they lived in, he designated his new firearms company “Zbrojovka” to attract the local residents.
Sitanin Zbrojovka Unlimited was created in YE 19. Five men were hired to help run the machining tools. Uusushi still worked them from time to time, but he mostly acted as supervisor and designer. Langrova left her dry-cleaning business to a friend and became the business manager. In the beginning, only the FLC was produced, at a rate of three units a day.
However, in YE 23, five years after the introduction of the FLC, SiZi (now a company of 20 employees and a larger manufacturing site) designed and produced a pistol that, while barely a moderate commercial success, was popular among citizens for its accuracy, ergonomics and smooth action.
Designated “SiZi Model 79,” it was the only pistol Uusushi ever designed without relying on a previous weapon for inspiration. Instead, he drew from several successful designs and created a “mash-up” that wasn't entirely recognizable. He also used simplier materials (steel, for example), making the SiZi 79 heavier than even Zen Arms' .45-caliber pistol.
As the pistol didn't sell very well, and was very harsh to the machining tools, Langrova convinced her husband to work on more marketable weapons, such as an update to the FLC. The pistol had three production runs until YE 28; Zen Arms had made enough off of a lesser-quality copy of the Model 79 to spur SiZi to make more. Designated "SiZi Model 79P3," it uses a poorer quality of steel.
With the help of the FLC and other, cheaper pistol designs, SiZi has diminished KZ's future in Nepleslia's eastern sectors. Across nine years, SiZi effectively reduced KZ's market share by as little as 10 percent in some districts (SiZi's home district holds the record, having reduced KZ's share by about 60 percent). With gross revenue reaching into the 900,000 KS range, SiZi has stabilized itself as a quirky but successful arms dealer. They have no military contracts, but a few local “police forces” have ordered several hundred FLCs.
The new decade brought about a new weapon that was well outside the normal expertise of SiZi's designers. Then again, it wasn't technically designed by SiZi's people — the Condensed Plasma Revolver, Model 30, was designed by Fiolina Jilad, an expatriate gunsmith from Yamatai. This weapon, along with the original, good-steel versions of the Model 79P and 79C, were sold on Yamatai through independent dealers.