The Free Company of Oriente was founded by Xavier Ferrer, a Free Worlds League nobleman, in 3053. As a member of a noble house that was out of favor in court, Ferrer found his military career within the FWLM stymied. After being passed up for promotion to Captain for a third time, Ferrer turned in his commission, liquidated much of his family assets in wine and olive oil production and began to build the infrastructure for a mercenary force.
Impressed by the new force organization being used by the Federated Commonwealth, Ferrer organized his unit from the beginning as a combined arms unit. He started small with only a single mech lance – all members of his former unit in the FWLM – and a mix of armor and infantry elements. Many of the initial recruits were from his own household guard as well as other disenchanted individuals from Oriente.
After a few small time contracts, the Company got its first big break with a contract in the Taurian Concordat in 3054 to hunt down the infamous pirates known as the Jameson Gang. Although the fighting proved fierce, especially after another mercenary unit tried to jump their claim, they were successful in their mission. From the salvage and contract earnings, Ferrer was able to substantially expand the Company.
In 3057, the Company completed a daring raid of Hyner in the Smoke Jaguar occupation zone to extract the family of an important noble. They stood up to a full clan trinary (although mostly solamha units) and made a good showing, breaking the trinary and taking several bonsdman.
The Smoke Jaguar operation put the Company on other people’s lips and helped them secure a lucrative contract with the Capellan Confederation to assault Caph as part of Operation Guerrero. The fighting on Caph was brutal and the Company found themselves in the middle of a mini-civil war between troops loyal to the Federated Commonwealth and Lyran Alliance. They secured and then held the capital city of Aswan against two separate assaults. At the conclusion of their contract in early 3058, they turned down an extension, fearing that the fighting was about to turn even more ugly.
With the salvage from Caph, Colonel Ferrer was able to expand the Free Company into a full combined arms regiment. This re-organization took several months during which the Company enjoyed R&R on Outreach. In late 3058, they took a contract from the New Home provisional government to destroy a group of raiders from Bryant that had been preying repeatedly on New Home’s resources. Although the New Home government could not afford to provide a very lucrative contract, they did give liberal salvage rights and independent command to the Company. The salvage rights turned out to be a great boon when it was discovered that the Bryant Regulars had uncovered a Star League era cache in the storm-wracked ruins of Bryant’s main continent. In addition, the Company was able to take command of two dropships as a legitimate prize.
After a brief and unpleasant stint performing riot duty on Keid for Comstar, the Company signed a very lucrative contract with a joint venture by GM and Johnston Industries to free Acamar from a pirate strongman who had taken it over.
Colonel Ferrer organizes the Company around a combined arms concept. He came of age during the Andurien wars and was impressed by the combined arms approach of the Defenders of Andurien as well as the RCT organization of Hanse Davion. The Company is organized as a battalion each of mechs, conventional armor, and infantry. In actual practice, task force groups often pull elements at the company or lance level from each battalion to create combined arms formations, so the battalion organization is mostly on paper alone.
The logo for the Free Company of Oriente is the insignia is derived from the insignia for House Ferrer and feaures a rearing stallion on a field of navy black and gold. The parade colors for the Company are similarily navy blue with gold highlights.