Finland became independent in 1917, and the state owned cartridge factory was founded and built in Lapua in 1923. In 1927 the name State Cartridge Factory was taken into use. In the beginning the operations were modest, but since the political situation in the world changed before the World War II, the ammunition production quantities multiplied.
The Cartridge Factory was incorporated with the Governmental Metal Factory, Valmet. The first rimfire cartridges were manufactured in 1947. The cartridge factory went under the Ministry of Defense in 1955.
Decades of growth.
In 1976 an explosion accident resulted in the decision to build a new factory, further away from the city center. Next step was to further expand by building a new case and bullet factory, which was taken into use in 1984.
In the 1980´s Lapua concentrated strongly in product development, which resulted in fast growth in the civilian product sales. As marketing and product development got stronger, Lapua became an even more competitive manufacturer in sport shooting, hunting and special purpose cartridge markets.
In 1991 Lapua became an independent limited liability company under the new name Cartridge Factory Lapua Ltd. In 1992, Lapua acquired the German cartridge factory SK Jagd- und Sportmunitions GmbH. The product line fulfills and supports the ammunition selection of the main factory.
Towards international markets.
Finnish military manufacturers formed a state owned company Patria Industries including Patria Finavitec, Patria Lapua, Vihtavuori Oy, Patria Vammas and Patria Vehicles.
In August 1998 Patria Industries Oyj from Finland, Celsius AB from Sweden and Raufoss ASA from Norway signed an agreement to affiliate the companies into a Nordic Nammo Group, which started its operations in the summer of 1998. In Finland Nammo Lapua Oy became part of the Nammo Group.
Nammo AS ownership changed: 50% owned by Patria Oyj and 50% by the Norwegian government