Taser finds UK electrifying with $4m deal for distributor TSR

Lynsey Barber
Follow Lynsey
The market for Tasers is growing in the UK (Source: Getty)

Taser, the US firm which makes the namesake devices used by law enforcement, has bought a British distributor of the non-lethal weapon.

The Nasdaq-listed company has acquired Daventry-based Tactical Safety Responses (TSR) which distributes the Taser as well as body cameras in the UK, for a reported $4m (£2.5m).

Staff and services will remain the same, but it will be renamed Axon Public Safety and its sales team will be moved to London. Taser chief Rick Smith said the deal means a more direct relationship between Taser and customers, effectively removing the middleman by owning the distributor outright.

Read more: Gun makers targeted by short sellers

"Having worked for more than 15 years to introduce Taser technologies to British police forces, we are excited to now become a part of this international organisation," said TSR boss Glenn Cameron.

And there's plenty of opportunity for Taser in the UK.

Earlier this year the chair of the Police Federation called for every police officer to be armed with a Taser because of the rising threat of terrorism. The group, which represents police officers in Britain later voted in favour of a policy that would let any officer carry a Taser if they wish.

Use of Tasers by police has risen by 50 per cent in the last five years according to Home Office data, with the highest use in London

Read more: Police Federation calls for all UK officers to have tasers to defend against terrorists

Thousands of London police officers will be fitted with body cameras, which Taser also makes, in a bid to reduce crime by 10 per cent. It follows high-profile policing disputes such as the shooting of Mark Duggan which triggered riots in 2011 and "Plebgate", in which MP Andrew Mitchell was accused of calling a police officer at the gates of 10 Downing Street a pleb.

Related articles