Industry & Services >> CEO Interviews >> October 7, 2016
Interview with the CEO: TASER International, Inc. (NASDAQ:TASR)
Patrick Smith is the Chief Executive Officer of TASER International, Inc., a company he founded in a Tucson garage in 1993. Mr. Smith graduated from Harvard in three years with a degree in biology in 1991. He then studied at the University of Chicago and Leuven University in Belgium, earning both an MBA in finance and a Master of International Finance. While living in Europe, two of Mr. Smith’s high school friends were shot and killed in a road-rage incident in Arizona. Dismayed to learn that more than 37,000 people died of bullet wounds in the U.S. in 1991, Mr. Smith set out to develop alternative technologies that would allow people to protect themselves, but without killing. Mr. Smith founded TASER International, Inc., with his brother Tom and a former NASA scientist and TASER-conducted electrical weapon inventor Jack Cover in September of 1993. Looking forward, Mr. Smith is leading an effort to modernize public safety information systems with the first major cloud-computing initiative in the space, Evidence.com. Evidence.com is a SaaS platform built to seamlessly handle the tidal wave of digital data, including video, photos and audio growing exponentially in modern law enforcement. Today, more than 2,000 agencies use Evidence.com. From a community standpoint, Mr. Smith created the TASER Foundation for Fallen Officers in 2004 to help support the families of public safety officers killed in the line of duty. The TASER Foundation distributed more than $3 million to the families of fallen heroes before the foundation was merged into the larger International Association of Chiefs of Police — IACP — Foundation. Mr. Smith serves as a board member for the IACP Foundation. He also serves as a member of the Exponential Advisory Board, XAB, for Singularity University, a nonprofit dedicated to his professional passion: using technology to solve mankind’s greatest challenges. Profile
TWST: TASER has grown significantly and expanded into new areas since we last spoke in 2013. Can you update us on the business and on all these changes?