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'"Everyone needs a weapon. Be it for Self-defense, meteor dissuasion, law enforcement, sport, or simply trading with the Unathi. We will give you whatever you desire, all with no questions asked! Just as long as you have the Thalers, of course.
Now before any of you pro-peace groups speak up, remember it is OUR weapons that police officer in the corner over there is carrying. The soldiers that fight for your freedom? Our guns and vehicles. The point defense system that shot up that meteor before it turned the ship you rode here on into a mangled chunk of space debris? Ours. Be it for protection or otherwise, just remember our motto:
Everyone needs a weapon. That's why we exist."
Hesphaistos Industries is the biggest and most notorious arms manufacturer of human space. Half of human weaponry is produced by Hesphaistos Industries or one of their sub contractors.
During the later half of the 21st century, the leading weapon manufacturers of Germany, Rheinmetall, Thyssen-Krupp, Walther and Heckler and Koch banded together into Hesphaistos Industries to combat dwindling exports and profits. The combination of their knowledge and assets went to an advent of weapon technology in the heart of Europe and before long several other corporations that also focused in heavy industries and arms manufacturing were bought out and integrated. It was this perhaps that helped them weather the great economic collapse of Earth and allowed them to supply virtually every warring faction of Earth with arms and vehicles to form their own military. The vast amount of funds earned during the disputes earned Hesphaistos Industries enough funds to become the first interplanetary corporation after the formation of Sol Central, and later led their expansion to become humanity's first trans-stellar corporation.
When phoron was discovered at the end of the 25th century, Hesphaistos Industries looked into the potential of the new found element but backed down when Nanotrasen formed and fought tooth and nail for all known deposits. Among the trans-stellars, Hesphaistos Industries shares the most amiable relations with humanity's allies, in particular the Unathi.
Hesphaistos Industries is the leading market share in small arms, planetary armed vehicles and defense/security systems. They are also the least scrupulous of corporations, well known for selling weapons to both sides of a dispute, or even their own competitors, as long as the weapons are not used on them and one has the Thalers, they will sell you whatever you wish. These and other factors help them become the largest, strongest and most profitable trans-stellar corporation in Human space.
Alien technology has a rather significant research branch in Hesphaistos Industries, in particular ancient Unathi weaponry and whatever gets funneled to them by the Skrell. Meanwhile their phoron research branch is practically non-existant, rumour has it they are letting their competitors, in particular the 'new kid' NanoTrasen, take the risks and costs of phoron accidents and do the basic grunt work before stepping back in. This is purely rumour and all incidents of corporate spies that claimed to be on HI's payroll have been denied by Hesphaistos Industries.
Due to their unscrupulous nature, and and the necessary evil of being a major arms industry, Hesphaistos Industries are the under constant scrutiny and are generally disliked by more peaceful systems. However they are also considered one of the best trans-stellar corporations to work for, with the highest pay rates, best benefits that last well past retirement. A job at Hesphaistos Industries is one of the hardest, but most sought after, positions, and those who make it in and are loyal are often considered set for life.