TASER International Inc.
TASER INTERNATIONAL INC (Form: DEF 14A, Received: 04/15/2016 14:28:17)


 
UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
 
 
 
SCHEDULE 14A
(Rule 14a-101)
INFORMATION REQUIRED IN PROXY STATEMENT
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TASER INTERNATIONAL, INC.
17800 North 85 th Street
Scottsdale, Arizona 85255
  
 
NOTICE OF ANNUAL MEETING OF STOCKHOLDERS
May 26, 2016
  
 
To Our Stockholders:
The 2016 Annual Meeting of Stockholders (the “Annual Meeting”) of TASER International, Inc. (the “Company”) will be held at 10:00 a.m. (local time) on Thursday , May 26, 2016 , at the Company's headquarters located at 17800 North 85th Street, Scottsdale, AZ 85255 for the following purposes:
 
1.
Electing the two Class A directors of the Company named in this proxy statement for a term of three years, and until their successors are elected and qualified;
2.
To amend the Company's Certificate of Incorporation to remove the super-majority vote requirement to approve amendments to the Company's Charter and Bylaws, and to replace with a simple majority vote requirement.
3.
Advisory approval of the Company’s executive compensation;
4.
Ratifying the appointment of Grant Thornton LLP as the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm for fiscal year 2016 ;
5.
To approve the TASER International, Inc. 2016 Stock Incentive Plan; and
6.
Transacting such other business as may properly come before the Annual Meeting or any continuation, postponement or adjournment thereof.
Only holders of the Company’s common stock at the close of business on March 28, 2016 are entitled to notice of, and to vote at, the Annual Meeting and any adjournments or postponements thereof. Stockholders may vote in person or by proxy. A list of stockholders entitled to vote at the Annual Meeting will be available for examination by stockholders at the time and place of the Annual Meeting and during ordinary business hours, for a period of ten days prior to the Annual Meeting, at the principal executive offices of the Company at the address listed above.
By Order of the Board of Directors,
 
/s/ DOUGLAS E. KLINT
Douglas E. Klint
General Counsel and Corporate Secretary
Scottsdale, Arizona
April 15, 2016

YOUR VOTE IS IMPORTANT. WHETHER OR NOT YOU EXPECT TO ATTEND THE ANNUAL MEETING IN PERSON, PLEASE VOTE ON THE INTERNET, BY TELEPHONE, OR MARK, SIGN, DATE AND PROMPTLY RETURN YOUR PROXY IN THE ENCLOSED ENVELOPE.


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TASER INTERNATIONAL, INC.
17800 North 85 th Street
Scottsdale, Arizona 85255
   
 
PROXY STATEMENT FOR 2016 ANNUAL MEETING OF STOCKHOLDERS
   
 
GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT THE ANNUAL MEETING AND VOTING
Why am I receiving these proxy materials?
Our Board of Directors (the “Board”) has made these materials available to you on the Internet or has delivered printed versions of these materials to you by mail in connection with the Board of Directors’ solicitation of proxies for use at our Annual Meeting of Stockholders, which will take place at 10:00 a.m.  local time on Thursday , May 26, 2016 at the Company's headquarters located at 17800 North 85th Street, Scottsdale, AZ 85255 . This Proxy Statement describes matters on which you, as a stockholder, are entitled to vote. It also gives you information on these matters so that you can make an informed decision. This proxy statement is first being made available or sent to stockholders on or about April 15, 2016 .
What is included in these materials?
These materials include:
 
This Proxy Statement for the Annual Meeting; and
The Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2015 (the “Annual Report”).
If you received printed versions of these materials by mail, these materials also include the proxy card or vote instruction form for the Annual Meeting.
Why did I receive a one-page notice in the mail regarding the Internet availability of proxy materials instead of printed proxy materials?
In accordance with the rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), instead of mailing a printed copy of our proxy materials to all of our stockholders, we have elected to furnish such materials to stockholders by providing access to these documents over the Internet. Accordingly, on April 15, 2016 we sent a Notice of Internet Availability of Proxy Materials (the “Notice”) to stockholders of record and beneficial owners. Stockholders have the ability to access the proxy materials on a website referred to in the Notice or request to receive a printed set of the proxy materials by calling the toll-free number found in the Notice. The Company encourages you to take advantage of the availability of the proxy materials on the Internet in order to help reduce the cost and environmental impact of the Annual Meeting.
How can I get electronic access to the proxy materials?
The Notice provides you with instructions regarding how to: (1) view our proxy materials for the Annual Meeting on the Internet; (2) vote your shares after you have viewed our proxy materials; (3) request a printed copy of the proxy materials; and (4) instruct us to send our future proxy materials to you electronically by email. Copies of the proxy materials are also available for viewing at the investor relations page of the Company’s website at http://investor.taser.com.

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What proposals will be voted on at the Annual Meeting and how does the Board of Directors recommend I vote?
Stockholders will vote on the following items at the Annual Meeting:
Proposal
Description
Board Recommendation
No. 1
The election of the two Class A directors of the Company named in this proxy statement for a term of three years, and until their successors are elected and qualified
FOR
(all nominees)
No. 2
Amend the Company's Certificate of Incorporation to remove the super-majority vote requirement to approve amendments to the Company's Charter and Bylaws, and to replace with a simple majority vote requirement
FOR
No. 3
Advisory resolution approving Company’s executive compensation
FOR
No. 4
Ratification of the appointment of Grant Thornton LLP as the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm for fiscal year 2016
FOR
No. 5
Approval of the TASER International, Inc. 2016 Stock Incentive Plan
FOR
Stockholders will also vote on the transaction of any other business as may properly come before the Annual Meeting or any continuation, postponement or adjournment thereof. To the maximum extent allowed by the SEC’s proxy rules, the proxy holders will vote your shares in such other matters as they determine in their discretion.
Where are the Company’s principal executive offices located and what is the Company’s main telephone number?
The Company’s principal executive offices are located at 17800 North 85 th Street, Scottsdale, Arizona 85255. The Company’s main telephone number is (800) 978-2737.
Who may vote at the Annual Meeting?
As of March 28, 2016 (the “Record Date”), there were 53,445,945 shares of the Company’s common stock outstanding and entitled to one vote each at the Annual Meeting. The presence in person or by proxy of persons holding a majority of these shares, or 26,722,973 shares, will constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. Each share of common stock entitles the holder to one vote on each matter that may properly come before the Annual Meeting. Stockholders are not entitled to cumulative voting in the election of directors. Only stockholders of record as of the close of business on the Record Date are entitled to receive notice of, to attend, and to vote at the Annual Meeting.
What is the difference between a stockholder of record and a beneficial owner of shares held in street name?
Stockholder of Record
If your shares are registered directly in your name with the Company’s transfer agent, Computershare, you are considered the stockholder of record with respect to those shares, and the Notice or printed materials were sent directly to you by the Company. If you request printed copies of the proxy materials by mail, you will also receive a printed proxy card.
Beneficial Owner of Shares Held in Street Name
If your shares are held in an account at a brokerage firm, bank, broker-dealer, or other similar organization, then you are the beneficial owner of shares held in “street name,” and the Notice or the printed proxy materials were forwarded to you by that organization. The organization holding your account is considered the stockholder of record for purposes of voting at the Annual Meeting. As a beneficial owner, you have the right to direct that organization how to vote the shares held in your account. If you request printed copies of the proxy materials by mail, you will also receive a printed vote instruction form.
If I am a stockholder of record of the Company’s shares, how do I vote?
There are four ways to vote:
I In person. If you are a stockholder of record, you may vote in person at the Annual Meeting. Bring your printed proxy card if you received one by mail. Otherwise, the Company will provide stockholders of record a ballot at the Annual Meeting.
: Via the Internet. If you received a Notice, you may vote via the Internet by visiting http.//www.proxyvote.com and entering the control number found in the Notice.

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( By telephone. If you received or requested printed copies of the proxy materials by mail, you may vote by calling the toll free number found on the proxy card.
, By mail. If you received or requested printed copies of the proxy materials by mail, you may vote by filling out the proxy card and returning it in the envelope provided.
If I am a beneficial owner of shares held in street name, how do I vote?
Your bank or broker will send you instructions on how to vote. There are four ways to vote:
I In person. If you are a beneficial owner of shares held in street name and you wish to vote in person at the Annual Meeting, you must obtain a legal proxy from the organization that holds your shares.
: Via the Internet. If you received a Notice, you may vote via the Internet by visiting http.//www.proxyvote.com and entering the control number found in the Notice.
( By telephone. If you received or requested printed copies of the proxy materials by mail, you may vote by calling the toll free number found on the vote instruction form.
, By mail. If you received or requested printed copies of the proxy materials by mail, you may vote by filling out the vote instruction form and returning it in the envelope provided.
What constitutes a quorum in order to hold and transact business at the Annual Meeting?
Under Delaware law and the Company’s bylaws, the presence in person or by proxy of the holders of record of a majority of the votes entitled to be cast at a meeting constitutes a quorum. Abstentions and broker non-votes will all be counted as present to determine whether a quorum has been established. Once a share of the Company’s common stock is represented for any purpose at a meeting, it is deemed present for quorum purposes for the remainder of the meeting and any adjournments or postponements. If a quorum is not present, the Annual Meeting may be adjourned until a quorum is obtained.
How are proxies voted?
All valid proxies received prior to the Annual Meeting will be voted. All shares represented by a proxy will be voted and, where a stockholder specifies by means of the proxy a choice with respect to any matter to be acted upon, the shares will be voted in accordance with the stockholder’s instructions.
What happens if I do not give specific voting instructions?
Stockholders of Record If you are a stockholder of record and you indicate when voting on the Internet or by telephone that you wish to vote as recommended by the Board, or sign and return a proxy card without giving specific voting instructions, then the proxy holders will vote your shares in the manner recommended by the Board on all matters presented in this proxy statement and as the proxy holders may determine in their discretion with respect to any other matters properly presented for a vote at the Annual Meeting.
Beneficial Owners of Shares Held in Street Name If you are a beneficial owner of shares held in street name and do not provide the organization that holds your shares with specific voting instructions, the organization that holds your shares may vote on routine matters but cannot vote on non-routine matters. If the organization that holds your shares does not receive instructions from you on how to vote your shares on a non-routine matter, the organization that holds your shares will inform the inspector of election that it does not have the authority to vote on such matters with respect to your shares. This is generally referred to as a “broker non-vote.”
Which ballot measures are considered “routine” or “non-routine”?
Proposal No. 4 (ratification of the appointment of the independent registered public accountants) is considered “routine.” A broker or other nominee may generally vote on routine matters, and therefore no broker non-votes are expected in connection with this proposal.
Each of the other proposals, including the election of directors (Proposal No. 1), the request to amend the Company's Certificate of Incorporation (Proposal No. 2), the advisory resolution approving the Company's executive compensation (No. 3) and the proposal to approve the adoption of the Company's 2016 Stock Incentive Plan (No. 5) are considered “non-routine" under applicable

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rules. A broker or other nominee cannot vote without specific instructions from the beneficial owner on non-routine matters, and therefore we anticipate there will be broker non-votes in connection with Proposals No. 1, No. 2, No. 3 and No. 5.
Can I change my vote after I have voted?
You may revoke your proxy and change your vote at any time before the final vote at the Annual Meeting by voting again via the Internet or by telephone (only your latest Internet or telephone proxy submitted prior to the Annual Meeting will be counted), by signing and returning a new proxy card or vote instruction form with a later date, or by attending the Annual Meeting and voting in person. However, your attendance at the Annual Meeting will not automatically revoke your proxy unless you vote again at the Annual Meeting or specifically request that your prior proxy be revoked by delivering to the Company’s Corporate Secretary at 17800 North 85 th Street, Scottsdale, Arizona 85255, a written notice of revocation prior to the Annual Meeting.
Is my vote confidential?
Proxy instructions, ballots and voting tabulations that identify individual stockholders are handled in a manner that protects your voting privacy. Your vote will not be disclosed either within the Company or to third parties, except as necessary to meet applicable legal requirements; to allow for the tabulation and certification of votes; and to facilitate a successful proxy solicitation.
What is the voting requirement to approve each of the proposals?
Election of Directors
For Proposal No. 1, under our bylaws, assuming the existence of a quorum at the Annual Meeting, the two nominees for director who receive the affirmative vote of a plurality of all of the votes cast will be elected to the Board of Directors. This means that the two director nominees with the most votes will be elected. Shares that are marked “withhold authority” will be counted toward a quorum, but will not affect the outcome of the vote on the election of such director. Broker non-votes will have no effect on the outcome of this proposal if a quorum is present.
Amendment of Certification of Incorporation
For Proposal No. 2, assuming the existence of a quorum at the Annual Meeting, the amendment to our Certificate of Incorporation will be approved if 75% of the outstanding shares of common stock vote in favor of approval. Abstentions and broker non-votes will have the same effect as a vote against the proposal.
Advisory approval of the Company’s executive compensation (“Say on Pay”)
For Proposal No. 3, assuming the existence of a quorum at the Annual Meeting, the compensation of our executive officers will be approved if a majority of common stock present in person or by proxy at the Annual Meeting vote in favor of approval. Broker non-votes will have no effect on the outcome of this proposal if a quorum is present. Abstentions will have the same effect as a vote against the proposal.
Ratification of Independent Registered Public Accountants
For Proposal No. 4, assuming the existence of a quorum at the Annual Meeting, ratification of the appointment of the independent registered public accountants will be approved if a majority of Common Stock present in person or by proxy at the Annual Meeting vote in favor of ratification. Broker non-votes will have no impact on this proposal if a quorum is present. Abstentions will have the same effect as a vote against the proposal.
Approving the Adoption of the Company's 2016 Stock Incentive Plan
For Proposal No. 5, assuming the existence of a quorum at the Annual Meeting, the affirmative vote of the holders of a majority of the common stock present in person or represented by proxy at the meeting and entitled to vote on this proposal is required for approval. Broker non-votes will have no impact on this proposal if a quorum is present. Abstentions will have the same effect as a vote against the proposal.
Who will serve as the inspector of election?
A member of the Company’s internal legal department will serve as the inspector of election.


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Where can I find the voting results of the Annual Meeting?
The final voting results will be tallied by the inspector of election and, within four business days after the Annual Meeting, the Company expects to report the final results on Form 8-K with the SEC.
Who is paying for the cost of this proxy solicitation?
The Company will bear all expenses incurred in connection with the solicitation of proxies. The Company has retained Morrow & Co., LLC to assist in the distribution of proxy materials and the solicitation of proxies from brokerage firms, banks, broker-dealers and other similar organizations representing beneficial owners of shares for the Annual Meeting. The Company will, upon request, reimburse brokerage firms and other nominee holders for their reasonable expenses incurred in forwarding the proxy solicitation materials to the beneficial owners of our shares. The Company’s officers and directors and employees may solicit proxies by mail, personal contact, letter, telephone, telegram, facsimile or other electronic means. They will not receive any additional compensation for those activities, but they may be reimbursed for their out-of-pocket expenses. 

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GOVERNANCE
THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Director Nominations
The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee is responsible for identifying and evaluating nominees for Director and for recommending to the Board a slate of nominees for election at each Annual Meeting of Stockholders. Nominees may be suggested by directors, members of management, stockholders, or, in some cases, by a third-party firm.
Stockholders who wish the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee (the “NCG Committee”) to consider their recommendations for nominees for the position of director should submit their recommendations in writing by mail to the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, c/o TASER International, Inc., 17800 North 85 th Street, Scottsdale, AZ 85255. Recommendations by stockholders that are made in accordance with these procedures will receive the same consideration by the NCG Committee as other suggested nominees.
Qualifications for All Directors
In its assessment of each potential candidate, including those recommended by stockholders, the NCG Committee considers the potential nominee’s demonstrated character, judgment, relevant business, functional and industry experience, and whether they possess a high degree of business, technological, medical or law enforcement acumen, independence, and other such factors the NCG Committee determines are pertinent in light of the current needs of the Board. The NCG Committee also takes into account the ability of a potential nominee to devote the time and effort necessary to fulfill his or her responsibilities to the Company. While the NCG Committee does not have a formal diversity policy, it strives to achieve a well-rounded balance of varying skill sets and backgrounds in the composition of the Board.
The NCG Committee’s process for identifying and evaluating nominees typically involves a series of internal discussions, review of information concerning candidates and interviews with selected candidates. There are no differences in the manner in which the nominees for director are evaluated based on whether the nominee is recommended by a stockholder. The Company has not historically paid third parties to identify or assist in identifying or evaluating potential nominees but reserves the right to do so in the future.
Specific Qualifications, Education, Skills and Experience to be Represented on the Board
The Board has identified particular qualifications, skills and experience that are important to be represented on the Board as a whole in order to advise and contribute to the execution of the Company’s strategic objectives. Each Board member was selected in accordance with the process for the selection and nomination of directors described above. Accordingly, the Board believes that each of the Company’s Board members brings a myriad of attributes that combined benefit the Company and its stockholders. The following table summarizes certain key characteristics of the Company’s business and the associated attributes that have been identified as important to be represented on the Board.
Business Characteristics
 
Qualifications, Attributes, Skills & Experience
The Company’s business is multifaceted and involves complex financial transactions.
 
•     High level of financial literacy
•     Relevant CEO, CFO, treasury experience
•     Certified Public Accountant,
      Certified Financial Analyst
The Company’s business requires compliance with a variety of regulatory requirements across a number of countries and relationships with various entities and non-governmental organizations.
 
•     Governmental, legal or political
      experience
The Company’s TASER Weapons product lines utilize Neuro-Muscular Incapacitation from electrical currents as the method to disable a resisting suspect, which inherently involves medical and scientific testing.
 
•     Medical and/or scientific experience
The Company’s primary markets are law enforcement, military and corrections agencies.
 
•     Law enforcement experience
•     Military experience
The Company’s business is expanding into the innovative field of cloud computing and wearable technology which involves different point of views and perspectives from its traditional weapons background.
 
•     Emerging technologies experience
The Board’s responsibilities include understanding and overseeing the various risks facing the Company and ensuring that appropriate policies and procedures are in place to effectively manage risk.
 
•     Risk oversight
•     Management expertise


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Director Nominees in 2016
Michael Garnreiter, Chairman
Director since 2006
Class A
Age: 64
Board Committees: Audit Committee (Chair), Compensation Committee, Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, Litigation Committee
Other Public Company Boards: Banner Health, GlobalTranz, Pacific Alternative Asset Management Company, Knight Transportation, Amtech Systems
Mr. Garnreiter most recently served as Vice President of Finance and Treasurer of Shamrock Foods, a privately-held manufacturer and distributor of foods and food-related products. He retired from this position in December 2015. From January 2010 until August 2012, Mr. Garnreiter was a managing director of Fenix Financial Forensics, a Phoenix-based litigation and financial consulting firm. From April 2002 through June 2006, Mr. Garnreiter was Executive Vice President, Treasurer, and Chief Financial Officer of the Main Street Restaurant Group. Mr. Garnreiter previously served with the international accounting firm, Arthur Andersen, from 1974 through March 2002 with increasing levels of responsibility, culminating as a partner. Mr. Garnreiter holds a B.S. degree in accounting from California State University at Long Beach and is a Certified Public Accountant.
Specific Qualifications, Attributes, Skills and Experience:
High Level of Financial 
Literacy
Certified Public Accountant and former partner at Arthur Andersen. Served on the audit committee for each board he has served in the past.
Risk Oversight & Management
Board Experience for Knight Transportation, Amtech Systems, IA Global Inc., and Fenix Financial Forensics gives ample experience relating to public company corporate governance matters.
Hadi Partovi
Director since 2010
Class A
Age: 43
Board Committees: Compensation Committee
Other Public Company Boards: None
Mr. Partovi is the President and co-founder of the non-profit education organization Code.org. Mr. Partovi is a past or present strategic advisor or early investor at numerous technology companies, including Facebook, Dropbox, OPOWER, airbnb, Zappos, and Bluekai. From 2009 through 2010, Mr. Partovi was Senior Vice President of Technology for MySpace (via acquisition) and from 2006 through 2009 he was President and Co-Founder of ILIKE, Inc. which was acquired by MySpace in 2009. From 2002 through 2005, Mr. Partovi was General Manager, Microsoft MSN Entertainment and MSN.com and from 1999 through 2001, he was Co-Founder and VP of Product and Professional Services for TELLME Networks, Inc. From 1994 through 1999, he was Program Manager for Microsoft Internet Explorer. Mr. Partovi holds B.A. and M.S. degrees in Computer Science, summa cum laude , from Harvard University.

Specific Qualifications, Attributes, Skills and Experience:
Technology Expertise
Experience as an investor in technology companies provides Mr. Partovi with invaluable insight into software and Internet-related business development initiatives.
Risk Oversight & Management
Experience as an advisor to multiple start-up companies provides Mr. Partovi experience in the unique challenges facing new technology companies.



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Incumbent Directors in 2016
Patrick W. Smith, Chief Executive Officer
Director since 1993
Class B
Age: 45
Other Public Company Boards: None
Mr. Smith has served as CEO and as a director of the Company since 1993. He is also co-founder of the Company. After graduating from Harvard, cum laude , in just three years (class of 1991), Mr. Smith entered directly into the Master of Business Administration program at the University of Chicago. In two years, he completed both a master’s degree in international finance from the University of Leuven in Leuven, Belgium and an M.B.A. degree with honors at the University of Chicago, graduating in the top 5% of his class. After completing graduate school in the summer of 1993, he co-founded TASER International, Inc., in September 1993 with his brother, Thomas P. Smith.
Mark Kroll
Director since 2003
Class B
Age: 63
Board Committees: Litigation Committee
Other Public Company Boards: Haemonetics Corporation
Dr. Kroll retired in July 2005 from St. Jude Medical, Inc., where he held various executive level positions since 1995, most recently as Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Cardiac Rhythm Management Division. Dr. Kroll holds a B.S. degree in Mathematics and a M.S. degree and a Ph.D. degree from the Electrical Engineering department of the University of Minnesota and an M.B.A. degree from the University of St. Thomas. Dr. Kroll is also the named inventor of over 350 issued U.S. patents and is a Fellow of the: American College of Cardiology, Heart Rhythm Society, Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineering, and the American Institute for Medicine and Biology in Engineering.

Specific Qualifications, Attributes, Skills and Experience:
Technology Expertise
Advanced mathematical and scientific education and technology and scientific accomplishments as recognized by “Fellow” designations from IEEE and AIMBE provide a strong scientific background that is beneficial to the Company.
Bio-Medical and Scientific
Expertise
Scientific accomplishments as recognized by “Fellow” designations from the American College of Cardiology and the Heart Rhythm Society provide invaluable skills and experience to the TASER Weapons business.
Risk Oversight & Management
Service on Haemonetic’s board of directors as well as leadership positions at St. Jude’s Medical, Inc. provides beneficial experience in management and oversight.
Judy Martz
Director since 2005
Class B
Age: 72
Board Committees: Audit Committee, Compensation Committee, Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, Litigation Committee (Chair)
Other Public Company Boards: None
From January 2001 through January 2004, Ms. Martz was Governor of the State of Montana and was Lieutenant Governor of the State of Montana from January 1996 through January 2000. From 1989 through 1995, Ms. Martz served as state representative for U.S. Senator Conrad Burns. As Governor of the State of Montana, Ms. Martz managed a more than $6.0 billion budget for the state.


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Specific Qualifications, Attributes, Skills and Experience:
Relevant Political Background
As former Governor of the State of Montana, Ms. Martz brings a wealth of political insight and leadership to the Board, particularly with respect to matters relating to federal and government contracting.
Risk Oversight & Management
As former Governor, Ms. Martz is equipped with knowledge and experience in oversight and leadership issues.
Vice Admiral (Retired) Richard H. Carmona M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.S.
Director since 2007
Class C
Age: 66
Board Committees: Audit Committee, Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee (Chair), Litigation Committee
Other Public Company Boards: The Clorox Company, The Herbalife Company

Dr. Carmona was sworn in as the 17th Surgeon General of the United States on August 5, 2002 and served the statutory four year term. Prior to being named United States Surgeon General, Dr. Carmona was the chairman of the State of Arizona Southern Regional Emergency Medical System, a professor of surgery, public health and family and community medicine at the University of Arizona, and the Pima County Sheriff's Department surgeon and deputy sheriff. He is currently employed as Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Canyon Ranch Health in Tucson, Arizona and has held that position since October 1, 2006. Dr. Carmona attended Bronx Community College of the City University of New York where he earned his associate of arts degree. Dr. Carmona holds a B.S. degree and medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco. He has also earned a Master’s Degree in Public Health from the University of Arizona.

Specific Qualifications, Attributes, Skills and Experience:
High Level of Financial 
Literacy
As Vice Chairman of Canyon Ranch, CEO of Canyon Ranch Health, and as a member of other public company boards, Dr. Carmona is able to contribute to the oversight of the Company's financial matters.
Risk Oversight & Management
Service on the Clorox Company and the Herbalife Company boards of directors provides valuable insight into public company corporate governance matters.
Relevant Political Background
Service as the former Surgeon General of the U.S. provides a unique insight into political matters.
Medical Expertise
As the Surgeon General of the U.S. as well as his extensive career in emergency medical services, provides him a deep understanding of health, safety and medicine.
Law Enforcement/Military Experience
Dr. Carmona is a combat decorated and disabled U.S. Army Special Forces Veteran and a highly decorated police officer, giving him unusual insight into our diverse customer base.
Bret Taylor
Director since 2014
Class C
Age: 36
Board Committees: None.
Other Public Company Boards: None.

Bret Taylor served as Group Product Manager at Google Inc. until June 2007, where he co-created Google Maps and the Google Maps API. He then joined venture capital firm Benchmark Capital as an entrepreneur-in-residence where he founded the social network Friendfeed, Inc. with former Google employee, Jim Norris. Mr. Taylor was the CEO of FriendFeed until August 2009, when Facebook acquired the company, and he was named Taylor Chief Technology Officer of Facebook. He was the Chief Technology Officer of Facebook until the summer of 2012, and supervised some of Facebook's newest and most important products, including the creation of the Open Graph, the App Center, and its integration with the Apple App Store. Mr. Taylor is now CEO and co-founder of Quip. Mr. Taylor attended Stanford University, where he earned his bachelor's degree and a master's degree in computer science.

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Specific Qualifications, Attributes, Skills and Experience:
Technology Expertise
Executive experience in established technology organizations such as Google and Facebook, as well as experiences founding new technology companies, through Friendfeed and Quip, provides Mr. Taylor insight into software and Internet-related business development initiatives.
Risk Oversight & Management
Experience as CEO of Quip provides Mr. Taylor experience in the unique challenges facing growing technology companies.
Current Director Not Standing for Re-election:
Lt. General (USA, Retired) John S. Caldwell
Director since 2006
Class A
Age: 71
Board Committees: Audit Committee, Compensation Committee
Other Public Company Boards: Puradyn Filter Technologies
General Caldwell is currently employed as a consultant affiliated with The Spectrum Group and Wesley K. Clark Associates. General Caldwell was Senior Vice President, Defense Information Technology Solutions of QSS Group, Inc. from July 2004 through February 2008 at which time QSS Group Inc. was merged into Perot Systems Government Services. From February 2008 to June 2008 he was Executive Vice President, Defense Solutions, Perot Government Services. From November 2001 through January 2004, General Caldwell was a Lieutenant General in the United States Army and Military Deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology. General Caldwell holds a B.S. degree from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York and a M.S. degree in mechanical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.



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BOARD AND COMMITTEE GOVERNANCE
Role of the Board of Directors
The principal duties of the Board of Directors is to oversee management and evaluate strategy. The fundamental responsibility of the directors is to exercise their business judgment to act in what they reasonably believe to be the best interest of TASER International, Inc. and its stockholders. Our governance structure is designed to foster disciplined actions, effective decision-making, and appropriate monitoring of both compliance and performance.

TASER’s key governance documents, including our Corporate Governance Guidelines, are available at 
http://investor.taser.com/documents.cfm.

Board Leadership Structure
The Company’s governance documents provide the Board with flexibility to select the appropriate leadership structure for the Company. In making leadership structure determinations, the Board considers many factors, including the specific needs of the business and what is in the best interests of the Company’s stockholders. The current leadership structure is anchored by a non-management director as Chair of the Board. The Board believes this structure provides a very well-functioning and effective balance between strong Company leadership and appropriate safeguards and oversight by independent directors.

Chairman of the Board: Michael Garnreiter
Chief Executive Officer: Patrick W. Smith
Lead Independent Director: Judy Martz

The principal role of the Chairman of the Board is to manage and to provide leadership to the Board of Directors of the Company. The Chairman is accountable to the Board and acts as a direct liaison between the Board and the management of the Company, through the CEO. The Chairman acts as the communicator for Board decisions where appropriate. The separation of the role of the Chairman from that of the CEO is based on the Board's view that the Chairman should be free from any interest and any business or other relationship that could interfere with the Chairman’s judgment, other than interests resulting from Company shareholdings and remuneration.

In addition, the Company considers it to be useful and appropriate to designate a non-management independent director to serve in a lead capacity to coordinate the activities of the other non-management directors. Among other things, the Lead Independent Director is responsible, along with the Chairman, for setting the agenda for Board meetings with Board and management input, facilitating communication among Directors and between the Board and the CEO, and working with the CEO to provide an appropriate information flow to the Board. The Lead Independent Director is responsible for calling and chairing executive sessions of the independent Directors. The Lead Independent Director and the Chairman are expected to foster a cohesive Board that cooperates with the CEO towards the ultimate goal of creating shareholder value
The Board conducts an annual evaluation of the performance of the Board and each of its standing committees, including peer assessments of each individual director.
Meetings of the Board of Directors
During the year ended December 31, 2015 , the Board held 11 meetings. During 2015 , each director attended at least 75% of all regular Board and applicable committee meetings.
Committees of the Board of Directors
The Board of Directors maintains a standing Audit Committee, Compensation Committee, Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee and Litigation Committee.

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The following table summarizes the current membership of our standing non-management Board committees, and identifies the chair of each committee and the number of committee meetings held in fiscal 2015 :
 
Audit
Committee
 
Compensation
Committee
 
Nominating and
Corporate
Governance
Committee
 
Litigation
Committee
Number of Meetings
4
 
3
 
1
 
Director
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
John S. Caldwell
X
 
X
 
 
 
 
Michael Garnreiter
*
 
X
 
X
 
X
Hadi Partovi
 
 
*
 
 
 
 
Mark Kroll
 
 
 
 
 
 
X
Judy Martz
X
 
X
 
X
 
*
Richard Carmona
X
 
 
 
*
 
X
Bret Taylor
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  X = Member
* = Chair
The Audit Committee, established in accordance with Section 3(a)(58)(A) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 exercises sole authority with respect to the selection of the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm and the terms of their engagement; reviews the policies and procedures of the Company and management with respect to maintaining the Company’s books and records; reviews with the independent registered public accounting firm, upon the completion of their audit, the results of the auditing engagement and any other recommendations the independent registered public accounting firm may have with respect to the Company’s financial, accounting or auditing systems; and reviews with the independent registered public accounting firm, upon the completion of their quarterly review of the Company’s financial statements, the results of the quarterly review and any other recommendations the independent registered public accounting firm may have in connection with such quarterly reviews. The Report of the Audit Committee for the year ended December 31, 2015 is included in this Proxy Statement.
The Compensation Committee determines salaries, stock and bonus awards and considers employment agreements for appointed officers of the Company, and prepares reports on these matters; considers and reviews grants of options and restricted stock units under the Company’s compensations plans and administers such plans; and considers matters of director compensation, benefits and other forms of remuneration. The Compensation Committee Report for the year ended December 31, 2015 is included in this Proxy Statement. See “Compensation Discussion and Analysis” for more information regarding the Compensation Committee.

The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee is charged with identifying qualified candidates for nomination for election to the Board and nominating such candidates for election; and reviewing and making recommendation to the Board concerning the composition and size of the Board and its committees. The Committee also monitors the process to assess the Board’s effectiveness and is primarily responsible for oversight of corporate governance, and to develop and update our corporate governance principles.
The Litigation Committee is responsible for reviewing and approving the settlement of certain litigation matters against the Company or its offers and directors to ensure the settlement is fair, reasonable and in the best interests of the Company’s stockholders. No member of the Litigation Committee was a named party in any pending litigation involving the Company.
The Audit Committee, Compensation Committee and the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee have each adopted charters that govern their respective authority, responsibilities and operation. The charters of these committees are available on our website at http://investor.taser.com/documents.cfm.
Audit Committee Financial Experts
The Board of Directors has determined that Mr. Garnreiter, an independent director of the Company, is an audit committee financial expert within the meaning of that term under applicable rules promulgated by the Securities and Exchange Commission. Information about the past business and educational experience of Mr. Garnreiter is included in this Proxy Statement under the heading “Governance--The Board of Directors--Director Nominees in 2016.” The Board has also determined that each current member of the Audit Committee is financially literate under the current listing standards of NASDAQ.

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Director Independence
As of the date of this Proxy Statement, based upon the information submitted by each of its directors, the Board has made a determination that a majority of our current Board is independent as that term is defined by NASDAQ listing standards and that all of the members of our Board committees also meet any additional specific independence standards applicable to any committee on which such director serves, including the more stringent audit committee and compensation committee independence committee criteria. The following directors are currently deemed independent by the Board: Michael Garnreiter, Judy Martz, Richard Carmona, Hadi Partovi, John S. Caldwell and Bret Taylor. Each of these directors is also a “non-employee director” (within the meaning of Rule 16b-3 under the Exchange Act) and all are “outside directors” within the meaning of Section 162(m) of the Internal Revenue Code and related Treasury Regulations.
Patrick W. Smith is not independent because he is an executive officer of the Company, and Mark Kroll is not independent because he provides services to the Company (see “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions – Consulting Services”).
Board of Directors' Role in Risk Oversight
The Company’s risk management process is intended to ensure that risks are taken knowingly and purposefully. As such, the Company’s executive management keeps the Board apprised by presenting results of the process to identify, assess, prioritize and address strategic, financial, operating, business, compliance, litigation, regulatory, safety, reputational and other risks to the Company. Executive management meets with the Board on a quarterly basis to address high priority risks and on an as-needed basis to evaluate and monitor emerging risks.
Code of Ethics
The Company has adopted a Code of Ethics which is applicable to all employees, directors and consultants of the Company. A copy of the Company’s Code of Ethics is published and available on the investors portion of Company’s website at http://investor.taser.com/documents.cfm. The Company intends to disclose any future amendments or waivers to the Code of Ethics on the Company’s website within four business days following the date of such amendment or waiver, unless required by NASDAQ rules to disclose such event on Form 8-K.
Director Attendance at Annual Meetings of Stockholders
Directors are encouraged by the Company to attend each annual meeting of stockholders if their schedules permit. Seven of our directors attended the 2015 Annual Meeting of Stockholders, and a majority of the directors are expected to be in attendance at the 2016 Annual Meeting of Stockholders.
Stockholder Communications with Directors
Stockholders may communicate with members of the Board by mail addressed to the Chair, or any other individual member of the Board, to the full Board, or to a particular committee of the Board. In each case, such correspondence should be sent to the Company’s headquarters at 17800 North 85 th Street, Scottsdale, AZ 85255. All stockholder communications will be forwarded to each individual member of the Board.

DIRECTOR COMPENSATION
Members of the Board who are employees of the Company are not separately compensated for serving on the Board. Board compensation is reviewed periodically. Non-employee directors of the Company are paid $8,750 per quarter and are eligible to receive grants of restricted stock units (“RSUs”) of the Company’s stock with a grant date fair value equal to $80,000 vesting in equal annual installments over three years. New Board members are eligible to receive an initial grant of the Company's stock with a grant date fair value equal to $100,000 in their first year of service vesting in equal annual installments over three years. The Chair of the Board receives an additional $3,750 per quarter. Board members that provide any special Board advisory consultations in their official capacity as a Board member (other than Board and committee meetings) are paid compensation at the rate of $2,500 per day or $1,250 per half day, with no pay for travel days. All directors are reimbursed for reasonable expense incurred in connection with their attendance at meetings.

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In addition, board members serving on committees in either the chair or member capacity earn extra fees as summarized in the following table:
Committee
 
Quarterly Chair Fee
 
Quarterly Member Fee
Audit
 
$
3,750

 
$
1,875

Compensation
 
2,500

 
1,250

Nominating and Governance
 
1,500

 
750

Litigation
 
1,500

 
750

The annual RSU awards typically are granted on the date of the Company’s annual stockholder’s meeting. Directors have the option of deferring all or a portion of their cash compensation into a non-qualified deferred compensation plan.
The following table summarizes the compensation paid to non-employee directors for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2015 .
Name
 
Fees Earned or
Paid in Cash 
($)
 
Stock Awards 
($) (1)
 
All Other
Compensation ($) (2)
 
Total ($)
Michael Garnreiter
 
$
76,000

 
$
80,000

 
$

 
$
156,000

John S. Caldwell
 
47,500

 
80,000

 

 
127,500

Hadi Partovi
 
42,500

 
80,000

 

 
122,500

Mark W. Kroll
 
38,000

 
80,000

 
167,188

 
285,188

Judy Martz
 
56,500

 
80,000

 

 
136,500

Richard H. Carmona
 
51,500

 
80,000

 

 
131,500

Bret Taylor
 
35,000

 
80,000

 

 
115,000

(1)  
Amounts in this column represent the aggregate grant date fair value of RSUs, computed in accordance with stock-based compensation accounting rules (ASC Topic 718). The fair value of each RSU is the closing price of our common stock on the date of grant. Each non-employee director received an award of 2,467 RSUs on May 18, 2015. The awards vest in three equal installments on May 31, 2016, 2017 and 2018. Pursuant to SEC regulations, the amounts shown exclude the impact of estimated forfeitures related to service-based vesting conditions.
The following table shows equity-based awards granted in 2015 , as well as the aggregate number of outstanding RSU and options outstanding. Prior to 2012, when the Company transitioned to the use of restricted stock units, non-employee directors received grants of options to acquire common stock under certain of the Company’s stock compensation plans.
 
 
2015 Stock-based Awards
 
As of December 31, 2015
Name
 
Restricted Stock
Units Granted
 
Grant Date
 
Grant Date Fair
Value ($)
 
Aggregate
Restricted Stock
Units Outstanding
 
Aggregate
Options
Outstanding
Michael Garnreiter
 
2,467

 
5/18/2015
 
$
80,000

 
8,508

 

John S. Caldwell
 
2,467

 
5/18/2015
 
80,000

 
8,508

 
45,067

Hadi Partovi
 
2,467

 
5/18/2015
 
80,000

 
8,508

 
58,171

Mark W. Kroll
 
2,467

 
5/18/2015
 
80,000

 
8,508

 

Judy Martz
 
2,467

 
5/18/2015
 
80,000

 
8,508

 
40,894

Richard H. Carmona
 
2,467

 
5/18/2015
 
80,000

 
8,508

 
106,124

Bret Taylor
 
2,467

 
5/18/2015
 
80,000

 
8,011

 

(2)  
Other compensation for Dr. Kroll represents fees for consulting services provided. See “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions – Consulting Services” below.
(3)  
Non-employee directors have the option of participating in the non-qualified deferred compensation plan through which participants may elect to postpone the receipt and taxation of a portion of their compensation. All gains or losses are allocated fully to plan participants and the Company does not guarantee a rate of return on deferred balances. The Company does not make discretionary payments to the plan, but does make restorative 401(k) match contributions. There were no above-market returns for participants in the plan. Dr. Kroll participates in the Company's deferred compensation plan, and elected to defer $47,500 of earned compensation into the plan during the year ended December 31, 2015 .

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CERTAIN RELATIONSHIPS AND RELATED TRANSACTIONS
The Company currently maintains a written related party transaction policy, but will be voting on an enhanced related party transaction policy at its next regularly scheduled Board of Directors meeting in May 2016. It is the Company’s current policy, however, that all related party transactions will be reviewed by its Board and the Audit Committee. The Company’s policies are evidenced by the respective meetings’ minutes that document such reviews. Further, it is the policy of the Board that all proposed transactions by the Company with its directors, officers, five-percent stockholders and their affiliates be entered into or approved only if such transactions are on terms no less favorable to the Company than it could obtain from unaffiliated parties, are reasonably expected to benefit the Company and are approved by the Audit Committee. The Audit Committee is authorized to consult with independent legal counsel at the Company’s expense in determining whether to approve any such transaction.
Consulting Services
The Company engages Mark Kroll, a member of the Board of Directors, to provide consulting services. The expenses related to these services were $0.2 million for each of the years ended December 31, 2015, 2014 and 2013. At December 31, 2015 and 2014, the Company had accrued liabilities of approximately $31,000 and $8,000, respectively, related to these services.
Software Services
The Company subscribes to a mobile collaboration software suite offered by Quip, a company co-founded and managed by Bret Taylor, a member of the Board of Directors. The Company licenses the software for approximately $80,000 per year. As of December 31, 2015 and 2014 the Company had prepaid subscription costs of approximately $36,000 and $20,000, respectively.


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SHARE OWNERSHIP
The following table sets forth information, as of March 28, 2016 , with respect to beneficial ownership of the Company’s common stock by each current director or nominee for director, by each NEO currently employed by the Company, by all directors and executive officers as a group, and by each person who is known to the Company to be the beneficial owner of more than five percent of the Company’s outstanding common stock. The Company believes that, except as otherwise described below, each named beneficial owner has sole voting and investment power with respect to the shares listed.
Name and Address Of Beneficial Owner (1)
 
Shares Owned
 
Shares
Acquirable
Within 60
Days (2)
 
Total
Beneficial
Ownership
 
Percent of
Class (3)
BlackRock, Inc. (4)
 
5,432,624

 

 
5,432,624

 
10.2
%
St. Denis J. Villere & Company, LLC (5)
 
4,490,981

 

 
4,490,981

 
8.4

The Vanguard Group (6)
 
3,188,252

 

 
3,188,252

 
6.0

Artisan Partners Holdings LP (7)
 
2,985,136

 

 
2,985,136

 
5.6

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Patrick W. Smith
 
539,437

 
665,894

 
1,205,331

 
2.3

Mark W. Kroll
 
36,084

 
4,819

 
40,903

 
*

Judy Martz
 
15,251

 
45,713

 
60,964

 
*

John S. Caldwell
 
19,251

 
49,886

 
69,137

 
*

Richard H. Carmona
 
15,251

 
110,943

 
126,194

 
*

Michael Garnreiter
 
15,251

 
4,819

 
20,070

 
*

Hadi Partovi
 
258,898

 
62,990

 
321,888

 
*

Bret Taylor
 
1,847

 
822

 
2,669

 
*

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Luke S. Larson
 
3,754

 

 
3,754

 
*

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
39,880

 

 
39,880

 
*

Douglas E. Klint
 
44,375

 

 
44,375

 
*

Marcus W.L. Womack
 
21,276

 
12,271

 
33,547

 
*

Joshua M. Isner
 

 

 

 
*

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
All directors and named executive officers as a group (13 persons)
 
1,010,555

 
958,157

 
1,968,712

 
3.7
%
* Less than 1%
(1)  
Except as noted in Notes 4, 5, 6 below, the address of each of the persons listed is c/o TASER International, Inc., 17800 North 85th Street, Scottsdale, AZ 85255.
(2)  
Reflects the number of shares that could be purchased by exercise of options exercisable at March 28, 2016 , or restricted stock or options vesting within 60 days thereafter under the Company’s stock option plans. As of March 28, 2016 there were no shares currently pledged by any NEO or director.
(3)  
For purposes of computing the percentage of outstanding shares held by each person or group of persons named above, any security which such person or group has the right to acquire within 60 days of March 28, 2016 , is deemed to be outstanding for the purpose of computing the percentage ownership of such person or group, but is not deemed to be outstanding for the purpose of computing the percentage ownership of any other person or group.
(4)  
The address of BlackRock, Inc. is 55 East 52nd Street, New York, New York 10022.
(5)  
The address of St. Denis J. Villere & Company, LLC is 601 Poydras St., Suite 1808, New Orleans, Louisiana 70130.
(6)  
The address of The Vanguard Group is 100 Vanguard Blvd., Malvern, PA 19355.
(7)  
The address of Artisan Partners Holdings LP is 875 East Wisconsin Avenue, Suite 800, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202.

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SECTION 16(a) BENEFICIAL OWNERSHIP REPORTING COMPLIANCE
Section 16(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 requires the Company’s executive officers and directors, and persons who own more than 10 percent of a registered class of the Company’s equity securities, to file reports of ownership and changes in ownership with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Executive officers, directors and greater than 10 percent beneficial owners are required by SEC regulations to furnish the Company with copies of all forms they file pursuant to Section 16(a). Based solely on a review of the copies of such reports furnished to the Company and written representations from reporting persons that no other reports were required, to the Company’s knowledge, such persons complied with all of the Section 16(a) filing requirements applicable to them in 2015 , except for two Form 4s, covering two transactions, filed by Luke Larson on May 26, 2015 and August 6, 2015, two Form 4s, covering two transactions, for Joshua Isner on May 18, 2015 and August 6, 2015, and one Form 4, covering one transaction, filed by Marcus Womack on November 10, 2015.


EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION
EXECUTIVE OFFICERS
See “Governance--The Board of Directors--Incumbent Directors in 2016” for biographical information for Patrick W. Smith, who is also a named executive officer of the Company.

Luke S. Larson
Title: President
Joined TASER in 2008
Age: 35

Mr. Larson serves as TASER’s President. He is responsible for all domestic and international marketing and communications, and also oversees TASER’s Leadership Development Program. Mr. Larson joined TASER in June 2008 and has served in a variety of management roles including Chief Marketing Officer, Executive Vice President of Marketing, director of video products, product manager, product development manager and senior associate. Prior to joining TASER, Mr. Larson served as a Marine Corps infantry officer and saw action in two tours to Ar Ramadi, Iraq. He was awarded the Bronze Star with V for valor on his first tour. Mr. Larson graduated from the University of Arizona with honors where he was an NROTC Scholarship recipient. He also received an MBA in International Business from Thunderbird School of Global Management.

Daniel M. Behrendt
Title: Chief Financial Officer
Joined TASER in 2004
Age: 51
Mr. Behrendt joined the Company in May 2004 from Imperial Home Décor, after serving in a number of financial management positions for the Imperial Home Décor Group, a Blackstone Group Portfolio Company, from 1998—2004, including Director of Financial Planning and Analysis, Vice President and Corporate Controller and finally, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. From 1995 to 1998, he served as the Manager of Business Planning and Analysis for Teledyne Fluid Systems, a division of Allegheny Teledyne. From 1991 to 1995, he served as Manager, Business Planning and Analysis for PCC Airfoils, Inc. From 1988 to 1991, Mr. Behrendt was a Financial Analyst for the Power Generation Group of Babcock and Wilcox, and from 1986 to 1988, he worked as an auditor for Arthur Andersen in their Cleveland, Ohio office. Mr. Behrendt holds a B.S. degree in Accounting, cum laude, from Mount Union College, a Masters of Business Administration degree from The Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University and is a Certified Public Accountant.

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Douglas E. Klint
Title: General Counsel
Joined TASER in 2002
Age: 64
Mr. Klint joined the Company in December 2002 as Vice President, General Counsel and held that position through February 2010 at which time he was promoted to President and General Counsel. On December 4, 2014, Mr. Klint resigned as President of TASER effective April 6, 2015 while resuming the role of General Counsel. Mr. Klint previously served as Vice President and General Counsel of Zycad Corporation, a publicly traded high technology company located in St. Paul, MN and Menlo Park, CA from 1984 to 1998, and Vice President and General Counsel of Aspec Technology, a publicly traded semi-conductor IP company located in Sunnyvale, CA, from 1998 to 1999 at which time he was promoted to President and CEO and continued in that role through 2001. Mr. Klint has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics and Business Administration from Gustavus Adolphus College, and a Juris Doctor Degree from William Mitchell College of Law, cum laude. He is admitted to the Minnesota State Bar and the Arizona State Bar.

Marcus W. L. Womack
Title: General Manager of Axon Business Segment
Joined TASER in 2013
Age: 39
Mr. Womack previously served as Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Familiar, Inc. from 2011 through its purchase by TASER in October 2013. Prior to that, Mr. Womack was VP and General Manager at iLike Events & Ticketing from 2009 to 2011. From 2007 to 2009 Mr. Womack was Director of Product Management at iLike and from 2005 to 2007, Mr. Womack was the Lead Program Manager for Microsoft Xbox Live. Mr. Womack holds a B.A. degree from Pacific Lutheran University.

Joshua M. Isner
Title: Executive Vice President of Global Sales
Joined TASER in 2009
Age: 30

Mr. Isner came to TASER in 2009 as a member of our Leadership Development Program. After rotating through several departments in the company, he eventually helmed our domestic video and cloud sales team, which he led to a record year in 2014. Mr. Isner now oversees our entire sales organization. Mr. Isner was previously the Director of Leadership Development, Northeast Regional Sales Executive, and VP of Video and Cloud Sales at TASER. Mr. Isner has a BS in Government & Political Science from Harvard University.
Each executive officer serves at the discretion of our Board of Directors and no officer is subject to an agreement that requires the officer to serve the Company for a specified number of years. We have entered into employment-related agreements with each of the executive officers listed above. These agreements require notice of termination by the Company in certain situations that are described in further detail in this proxy statement under the heading “Compensation Discussion and Analysis--Employment Agreements and Other Arrangements.”




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COMPENSATION DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS
The purpose of this Compensation Discussion and Analysis is to provide material information about our compensation objectives and policies and to explain and provide context for the material elements of the disclosure which follows in this proxy statement with respect to the compensation of our named executive officers (“NEOs”).
Processes and Procedures for Considering and Determining Executive Compensation
The Compensation Committee (in this section, the “Committee”) assists the Board of Directors (“Board”) in addressing matters relating to the fair and competitive compensation of our NEOs and non-employee directors, together with matters relating to our other benefit plans. The Committee is currently composed of four independent directors: Hadi Partovi, Judy Martz, John S. Caldwell, and Michael Garnreiter. Mr. Partovi was appointed to Committee Chair during 2015. The Committee makes the sole decision regarding compensation for the Chief Executive Officer and each NEO.
The Committee met three times in 2015 . All Committee members were present for each meeting. To finalize the 2016 compensation structure, the Committee held two additional meetings in the first quarter of 2016 .
Two members of management, Patrick W. Smith, Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”) and Daniel M. Behrendt, Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”), attended portions of the meetings. The agendas for these meetings were determined by the Committee members prior to the meetings. The Committee generally receives and reviews materials in advance of each meeting. Depending on the agenda for the particular meeting, materials may include:
Financial reports;
Reports on levels of achievement of corporate performance objectives;
Schedules setting forth the total compensation of the NEOs, including base salary, cash incentives, equity awards, perquisites and other compensation and any potential amounts payable to the NEOs pursuant to employment, severance and change of control agreements;
Summaries which show the NEOs’ total accumulated stock awards and stock option holdings;
Information regarding compensation paid by comparable companies identified in executive compensation surveys; and
Reports from Compensation Committee consultants.
The Committee’s primarily responsibilities are to:
Review and approve corporate goals and objectives relevant to the compensation of NEOs, evaluate the performance of the NEOs in light of these goals and objectives and determine and approve the compensation level of NEOs based on that evaluation;
Evaluate and establish the incentive components of the CEO’s compensation and related bonus awards, taking into account the Company’s performance and relative stockholder return, the value of similar incentive awards to CEOs at comparable companies, the services rendered by the CEO and the awards given to the CEO in past years;
Review and approve the design of the compensation and benefit plans that pertain to the CEO and other NEOs who report directly to the CEO;
Administer equity-based plans, including stock incentive plans;
Approve the material terms of all employment, severance and change of control agreements for NEOs;
Retain compensation consultants and firms as necessary, or appropriate, on an advisory basis to establish comparator groups, benchmarking and targets for compensation related matters;
Recommend to the Board the compensation for Board members, such as retainers, committee fees, chair fees, stock awards and other similar items;
Provide oversight regarding the Company’s benefit and other welfare plans, policies and arrangements;
Prepare the Compensation Committee report to be included in the Company’s annual proxy statement and Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC.
The Committee’s charter reflects these responsibilities, and the Committee and the Board periodically review and revise the charter. The full text of the Compensation Committee charter is available on our website at http://investor.taser.com/documents.cfm.

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Role of Management and Consultants in Determining Executive Compensation
Our executive management supports the Committee in carrying out its responsibilities by preliminarily outlining compensation levels for NEOs, administering our benefit and other welfare plans and providing data to the Committee for analysis. Annually, compensation is initially proposed by the CEO for each executive (excluding the CEO), consisting of base salary, annual and long-term performance-based compensation and long-term equity compensation, which is then provided to the Committee for review and approval.
Our Committee has sole authority to engage the services of outside consultants and advisors, as it deems necessary or appropriate in the discharge of its duties and responsibilities. The Committee has budgetary authority to authorize and pay for the services of outside consultants, and the consultants report directly to the Committee. In connection with the design of the 2014 compensation structure, the Committee retained compensation consulting firm, Aon Hewitt, who provided research, data analyses, benchmarking and design expertise in developing and structuring compensation programs for executives. The Company utilized information provided in 2014 in its design of the 2015 and 2016 compensation structures, which do not differ significantly to that of the 2014 structure. Additionally, the Company utilized current publicly available compensation data for its peers in determining the 2016 structure.
Peer Comparator Group
The scope of Aon Hewitt’s review included determining an appropriate comparator group to compare the Company’s executive compensation to, based primarily on the following criteria: Industry and Global Industry Classification (“GICS”) code, revenue, EBITDA, market capitalization, and number of employees. Aon Hewitt selected companies in both manufacturing and technology to match the evolving nature of TASER’s business. Companies selected typically had annual sales between $60 million and $230 million, with market capitalization of $450 million to $2.5 billion. Total employees of the comparator companies were targeted at between 300 and 700. In addition to the comparator group, Aon Hewitt gathered benchmark data for the Committee’s review from the manufacturing and technology industries with similar revenue.

The Committee has selected the following comparator group when reviewing executive compensation:
AeroVironment, Inc.
  
IntraLinks Holdings, Inc.
  
SIFCO Industries Inc.
Astronics Corp.
  
Limelight Networks, Inc.
  
Smith Micro Software Inc.
CalAmp Corp.
  
LogMein, Inc.
  
Sparton Corp.
Carbonite, Inc.
  
Numerex Corp.
  
The KEYW Holding Corp.
CPI Aerostructures Inc.
  
Proofpoint, Inc.
  
VASCO Data Security International, Inc.
Guidance Software, Inc.
  
Qumu Corp.
  
 
Our Compensation Philosophy
The Committee is in place to address matters relating to the fair and competitive compensation of our NEOs and non-employee directors, together with matters relating to our other benefit plans. The Committee believes that executive compensation should be aligned with the values, objectives and financial performance of the Company.
Objectives of NEO compensation include:
 
Attract and retain highly qualified individuals who are capable of making significant contributions critical to our long-term success;
Promote a performance-oriented environment that encourages Company and individual achievement;
Reward NEOs for long-term strategic management and the enhancement of stockholder value;
Strengthen the relationship between pay and performance by emphasizing variable, at-risk compensation that is dependent upon the achievement of specified corporate and personal performance goals; and
Align long-term management interests with those of stockholders, including long-term at-risk pay.

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Our Compensation Programs
We utilize various non-cash compensation programs, in addition to traditional cash-based compensation methods. Specifically, we have utilized stock-based awards.
The principal components of compensation in 2015 and 2016 for our NEOs consist of the following:
Annual salary;
Annual performance-based incentive plans, comprised of:
Commissions on sales growth and bookings; and
Payouts under the annual cash incentive plan based on target levels of Axon bookings, total revenue, international revenue, TASER Weapon segment profit, agency adoption, active users of the Company's Axon software platform, and sales related to new products expected to launch in 2016;
Long-term incentive equity compensation in the form of performance-based restricted stock units ("PSUs"); and
Long-term equity compensation in the form of service-based restricted stock units (“RSUs”).
Any decision to materially increase compensation is based upon the objectives listed above, taking into account all forms of compensation, as well as based upon individual achievement of performance goals. These goals include revenue and pretax earnings targets as well as specific management tasks. Decisions regarding the CEO’s compensation are made by the Committee and reflect the same considerations used for the other NEOs. The Board has not adopted any claw-back policies, nor does it have any executive stock ownership requirements.
Benchmarking
It is the Committee’s intent that the total compensation for our NEOs be targeted between the 50 th and the 75 th percentile in relation to our established comparator group and the Committee intends that over time our compensation becomes more consistent with this goal. The Committee believes that targeting this range will reflect competitive market pay practices and our current compensation philosophy, which balances our “pay for performance” strategy with our desire to offer competitive compensation with respect to our comparator group, thus allowing us to attract and retain management talent.
The table below compares the Company’s NEOs’ target total direct compensation to our comparator group:
Named Executive
 
2015 Total
Target Direct
Compensation
 
Comparator
Group 50th
Percentile (1) (2)
 
Comparator
Group 75th
Percentile (1) (2)
 
2016 Total
Target Direct
Compensation
Patrick W. Smith
 
$
1,350,000

 
$
1,958,000

 
$
3,694,000

 
$
1,529,000

Luke S. Larson
 
1,000,000

 
1,129,000

 
1,540,000

 
812,000

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
1,050,000

 
891,000

 
1,145,077

 
950,000

Douglas E. Klint
 
820,000

 
729,000

 
900,000

 
758,000

Marcus W. L. Womack
 
760,000

 
1,016,000

 
1,584,000

 
600,000

Joshua M. Isner
 
750,000

 
1,184,000

 
1,558,400

 
700,000

(1)  
Amounts reported by comparator group companies was primarily derived from annual proxy statements for the year ended December 31, 2014.
(2)  
Positions and responsibilities reported for NEOs of comparator group companies varied, with not all companies reporting data for positions similar in nature and scope to those of TASER NEOs (other than CEO and CFO). Judgment was used in calculating comparator group information by role, using blends of reported positions and excluding certain comparator group companies from comparisons when appropriate.


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The following tables show the composition of each NEO’s total target direct compensation for 2015 and 2016:
2015
 
Annual Salary
 
Annual Target Incentive Compensation
(1)
 
Long-term Target Incentive Compensation--PSUs (2)
 
Long-term Equity Compensation--RSUs
(2)
 
Target Total Direct Compensation
Name
 
$
 
% of Total
 
$
 
% of Total
 
$
 
% of Total
 
$
 
% of Total
 
$
Patrick W. Smith
 
$
350,000

 
25.9
%
 
$
250,000

 
18.5
%
 
$
450,000

 
33.3
%
 
$
300,000

 
22.2
%
 
$
1,350,000

Luke S. Larson
 
250,000

 
25.0

 
100,000

 
10.0

 
150,000

 
15.0

 
500,000

 
50.0

 
1,000,000

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
300,000

 
28.6

 
150,000

 
14.3

 
150,000

 
14.3

 
450,000

 
42.9

 
1,050,000

Douglas E. Klint
 
300,000

 
36.6

 
350,000

 
42.7

 

 

 
170,000

 
20.7

 
820,000

Marcus W. L. Womack
 
235,000

 
30.9

 
100,000

 
13.2

 
175,000

 
23.0

 
250,000

 
32.9

 
760,000

Joshua M. Isner (3)
 
200,000

 
26.7

 
350,000

 
46.7

 

 

 
200,000

 
26.7

 
750,000

(1)  
Presented at target levels. Actual results for 2015 exceeded targets, resulting in payouts under the annual cash incentive plan for Messrs. Smith, Larson, Behrendt, Klint, and Womack and in the amounts of $263,500, $105,400, $158,100, $52,700 and $54,808, respectively. Messrs. Womack and Isner earned commissions in 2015 of $82,083 and $502,276, respectively. Mr. Klint's total annual target incentive compensation included $300,000 of commissions, none of which was earned during fiscal 2015. See further discussion following under “Performance-based Incentive Plans.”
(2)  
Approximate value; actual value of the PSUs and RSUs is based on the grant-date fair value.
(3)  
Effective May 18, 2015, upon promotion to Executive Vice President of Global Sales, Mr. Isner's annual salary was increased to $200,000 from $175,000. Additionally, Mr. Isner's annual target incentive compensation was adjusted to include $50,000 of additional performance based bonuses. Mr. Isner's annual target incentive compensation for 2015 also included $300,000 of sales commissions.
2016
 
Annual Salary
(1)
 
Annual Target Incentive Compensation
 
Long-term Target Incentive Compensation--PSUs (2)
 
Long-term Equity Compensation--RSUs
(2)
 
Target Total Direct Compensation
Name
 
$
 
% of Total
 
$
 
% of Total
 
$
 
% of Total
 
$
 
% of Total
 
$
Patrick W. Smith (3)
 
$
350,000

 
22.9
%
 
$

 
%
 
$
475,000

 
31.1
%
 
$
704,000

 
46.0
%
 
$
1,529,000

Luke S. Larson (4)
 
275,000

 
33.9

 
100,000

 
12.3

 
250,000

 
30.8

 
187,000

 
23.0

 
812,000

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
325,000

 
34.2

 
165,000

 
17.4

 
275,000

 
28.9

 
185,000

 
19.5

 
950,000

Douglas E. Klint (4)
 
300,000

 
39.6

 
300,000

 
39.6

 

 

 
158,000

 
20.8

 
758,000

Marcus W. L. Womack
 
260,000

 
43.3

 
115,000

 
19.2

 
125,000

 
20.8

 
100,000

 
16.7

 
600,000

Joshua M. Isner
 
225,000

 
32.1

 
375,000

 
53.6

 
100,000

 
14.3

 

 

 
700,000

(1)  
Annual salary effective February 1, 2016 .
(2)  
Approximate value; actual value of the PSUs and RSUs is based on the grant-date fair value.
(3)  
Mr. Smith elected to forgo receiving any target incentive compensation in 2016 in exchange for 125% of the targeted amount for RSUs having a grant date fair value of approximately $344,000 which will vest in equal annual installments over three years. The Company implemented this election to improve retention of executive employees while converting short-term cash compensation into longer term stock compensation. Additionally, the ultimate consideration received upon the vesting of time-based RSUs would be dependent upon the future stock price of the Company's common stock, and would align with the goal of increasing total shareholder returns.
(4)  
Messrs. Larson and Klint each elected to forgo receiving $50,000 of their target incentive compensation in exchange for 125% and 116%, respectively, of the targeted amount for RSUs having grant date fair values of $62,500 and $58,000, respectively, which will vest in equal annual installments over three years and two years, respectively. The Company implemented this election to improve retention of executive employees while converting short-term cash compensation into longer term stock compensation. Additionally, the ultimate consideration received upon the vesting of time-based RSUs would be dependent upon the future stock price of the Company's common stock, and would align with the goal of increasing total shareholder returns.
Annual Salary
Salaries for NEOs are reviewed annually, as well as at the time of a promotion or other changes in responsibilities. Consistent with our goal for overall compensation, annual salary is targeted in the 50 th to 75 th percentile of compensation paid to executives with similar levels of responsibility within our comparator group. Individual executives may be paid higher or lower than this target pay at the discretion of the Committee depending on facts; such as, tenure with the Company, results of personal, department and corporate performance, complexity of the business unit managed, and the perceived detrimental effects to the Company that may result from such executive’s departure. The base salaries of our NEOs, other than the CEO, were proposed by the CEO,

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established by the Committee and approved by the independent directors after considering compensation salary trends, overall level of responsibilities, total performance and compensation levels for comparable positions in the market for executive talent based on salary surveys and compensation data from comparator group companies.
After considering the above, effective February 1, 2016 , the Committee increased the base salaries of our NEOs as follows:
Named Executive
 
2015 Salary
($)
 
2016 Salary
($)
Patrick W. Smith
 
$
350,000

 
$
350,000

Luke S. Larson
 
250,000

 
275,000

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
300,000

 
325,000

Douglas E. Klint
 
300,000

 
300,000

Marcus W. L. Womack
 
235,000

 
260,000

Joshua M. Isner
 
200,000

 
225,000

Performance-based Incentive Plans
The objective of the annual incentive payment plan and the use of equity-based awards in the form of PSUs have been to provide executives with a competitive total compensation opportunity, as well as to align executive rewards with results.
2015 Structure
The 2015 executive compensation structure included: payments under the annual cash incentive plan; PSUs that cliff vest based on three-year revenue goals; and, for Mr. Klint, Mr. Womack and Mr. Isner, sales-based commissions, paid quarterly. Each component was designed to incentivize specific Company goals.
Payouts under the 2015 annual cash incentive plan were based on the achievement of annual financial goals, including goals related to: consolidated revenue, Axon bookings (as defined in SEC filings), operating income for the TASER Weapons segment, international revenue, the number of active users on the Company's Axon platform, and revenue related to the Company's consumer products. The Committee believed the criteria for the annual cash incentive plan were challenging, but achievable. Sales commissions were earned based upon specific sales targets for each eligible NEO. Because the sales commissions are tied to metrics such as sales growth and other operating results, the Committee did not set a maximum amount that could be paid under the plans for the NEOs.
2015 Performance - Based Cash Incentive Plans Metrics
Metric
 
Threshold
 
Target
 
Maximum
 
Actual
 
Weight
 
Weighted Payout
Revenue (millions)
 
$
175.0

 
$
185.0

 
$
200.0

 
$
197.9

 
25
%
 
36
%
Axon Bookings (millions)
 
$
70.0

 
$
100.0

 
$
120.0

 
$
135.1

 
30

 
45

International Sales (millions)
 
$
40.0

 
$
50.0

 
$
60.0

 
$
36.1

 
20

 

Weapons Segment operating income
 
35.0
%
 
37.0
%
 
39.0
%
 
37.8
%
 
15

 
17

Active users (linear payout from 0)
 
n/a

 
85,000

 
n/a

 
70,258

 
5

 
4

Consumer product revenue (millions) (linear payout from $0)
 
n/a

 
$
6.0

 
n/a

 
4.6

 
5

 
4
%
Actual attainment/plan payout
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
100
%
 
105
%
 

The 2015 performance-based cash incentive plan metrics were measured and paid quarterly after the Company releases its quarterly earnings. The first three fiscal quarters are weighted at 15% of the annual total with the fourth quarter equaling the remaining 55%. Each metric has a threshold, target and maximum goal with corresponding base payouts of 50%, 100% and 150% of target, respectively. The Company exceeded the highest target for the Axon bookings, which resulted in the maximum payout of 150% of target with a corresponding weighted payout of 45%. The total Revenue and Weapons Segment operating income metrics each met their target levels for fiscal 2015 , which resulted in a base payout of 100% of target plus the calculated incremental amount that the actual results exceeded their specified target levels, and this resulted in a weighted payout of 36% and 17%, respectively. The weighted average payout achieved under the 2014 performance-based cash incentive plan was 134%.


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The amount of PSUs that will ultimately vest, if any, is based upon the compounded annual revenue growth rates for the total Company and the Axon segment (excluding TASER Cam) compared to target for the three-year period ending December 31, 2017. Earned PSUs cliff vest at the end of that period. Should actual performance metrics exceed targeted metrics, executives will receive additional PSUs, for a total of up to 200% of target. The Committee decided to introduce sales targets related to three-year growth rates to promote and reward the achievement of long term objectives and long-term strategic planning by our NEOs. The 2015 consolidated revenue and Axon segment revenue metrics have threshold, target and maximum goals, based on compound annual growth rates, with payouts for each of these goals having payouts of 50%, 100% and 200%, respectively. If the threshold levels are not achieved, no amounts will be considered earned.
2016 Structure
In 2016 , each component of incentive compensation is designed to incentivize specific Company goals.
Payouts under the 2016 annual cash incentive plan will be based on the achievement of annual financial goals, including goals related to: consolidated revenue, Axon bookings (as defined in SEC filings), operating income for the TASER Weapons segment, agency adoption, active booked seats, international revenue and early release of future product offerings. The Committee believes the criteria for the annual cash incentive plan are challenging, but achievable. Sales commissions are earned based upon specific sales targets for each eligible NEO. Because sales commissions are tied to metrics such as sales growth, the Committee has not set a maximum amount that can be paid under the plans for the NEOs. In 2016 , the metrics tied to the annual cash incentive plan are typically capped at a 150% payout. However, agency adoption and active booked seats are calculated on a linear payout and therefore have no maximum payout.
Terms and conditions of the Performance-based Incentive Plans for NEOs are established by the Committee early in the fiscal year. The following table sets forth the target Performance-based incentive compensation for the years ended December 31, 2015 and 2016 .
 
 
Performance-based Incentive Plans - 2015 Target
Named Executive
 
Annual
Cash Incentive
 
Sales
Commissions
 
PSUs (#) (1)
 
Grant Date
Fair Value
 
Total 2015
Patrick W. Smith
 
$
250,000

 
$

 
16,667

 
$
452,676

 
$
702,676

Luke S. Larson
 
100,000

 

 
5,556

 
150,901

 
250,901

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
150,000

 

 
5,556

 
150,901

 
300,901

Douglas E. Klint
 
50,000

 
300,000

 

 

 
350,000

Marcus W. L. Womack
 
52,000

 
48,000

 
6,481

 
176,024

 
276,024

Joshua M. Isner
 
50,000

 
300,000

 

 

 
350,000

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Performance-based Incentive Plans - 2016 Target
Named Executive
 
Annual
Cash Incentive
 
Sales
Commissions
 
PSUs (#) (1)
 
Grant Date
Fair Value
 
Total 2016
Patrick W. Smith
 
$

 
$

 
30,685

 
$
475,000

 
$
475,000

Luke S. Larson
 
100,000

 

 
16,150

 
250,000

 
350,000

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
165,000

 

 
17,765

 
275,000

 
440,000

Douglas E. Klint
 

 
300,000

 

 

 
300,000

Marcus W. L. Womack
 
115,000

 

 
8,075

 
125,000

 
240,000

Joshua M. Isner
 

 
375,000

 
6,460

 
100,000

 
475,000

(1)  
50% of performance RSUs granted during 2015 cliff vest based on fiscal year 2017 consolidated GAAP revenues, and 50% cliff vest based on 2017 GAAP revenues related to the Axon segment. 50% of performance RSUs granted during 2016 cliff vest based on fiscal year 2018 consolidated GAAP revenues, and 50% cliff vest based on 2018 GAAP revenues related to the Axon segment. The 2016 consolidated revenue and Axon segment revenue metrics have threshold, target and maximum goals, based on compound annual growth rates, with payouts for each of these goals having payouts of 50%, 100% and 200%, respectively. If the threshold levels are not achieved, no amounts will be considered earned.

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Long-Term Service-Based Equity Compensation
The Committee believes that service-based equity compensation with multi-year vesting periods ensures that our NEOs have a continuing stake in our long-term success. As such, the Committee implemented, with Board and stockholder approval, the 2013 Stock Incentive Plan (the “2013 Plan”) that allows the Committee to grant stock-based awards to officers, and other key employees. The Committee believes the granting of such awards, which generally vest over a three-year service period, aligns those individuals’ interests with those of stockholders, motivates executives to make strategic long-term decisions, and better enables the Company to attract and retain capable directors, executives and key employees.
In determining the total number of units to award to each NEO, the Compensation Committee considers, among other things, the strategic objectives of the Company over the next three years, and the practice of comparator group companies. The following table sets forth the service-based RSU awards made to our NEOs in February 2015 and February 2016 :
 
 
2015 Awards
 
2016 Awards
Named Executive
 
Number of
Service-based
RSUs Awarded
 
Grant Date
Fair Value
 
Number of
Service-based
RSUs Awarded
 
Grant Date
Fair Value
Patrick W. Smith
 
11,046

 
$
300,000

 
45,462

 
$
704,000

Luke S. Larson
 
18,409

 
500,000

 
12,112

 
187,000

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
16,569

 
450,000

 
11,951

 
185,000

Douglas E. Klint
 
6,259

 
170,000

 
10,228

 
158,000

Marcus L. Womack
 
9,205

 
250,000

 
6,460

 
100,000

Joshua M. Isner
 
7,364

 
200,000

 

 

Other Long-term Performance-based Equity Compensation
In addition to the PSUs granted in conjunction with the performance-based incentive plans described above, the Committee has, from time-to-time, approved performance-based equity awards to certain of our NEOs in keeping with the Committee’s goals to align the long-term interests of management with the Company’s stockholders. Generally, these awards vest upon the achievement of performance milestones in the NEOs area of the business. The Committee’s intention in awarding these grants has been to incentivize and reward the achievement of significant long-term strategic goals.
The following table sets forth information concerning other long-term performance-based equity compensation awards which still have potential to vest. In determining the performance criteria for each NEO’s performance-based stock option award, the Committee considered, among other things, the strategic objectives of the Company and the executive’s ability to influence the performance criteria. The Committee believes that the performance targets described below are challenging, but achievable.
Name
 
Grant Date
 
Options
 
Performance Criteria
 
Vesting Provisions
 
Vesting Status
Douglas E. Klint
 
12/22/2008
 
25,000

 
Complete risk management meetings with 25 top U.S. law enforcement agencies.
 
Fully vested in January following the fiscal year in which criteria is achieved. The performance criteria has to be met prior to the option's expiration in December 2018.
 
Options did not vest in 2015. Management expects the performance criteria to be met by December 31, 2016.
Employment Agreements and Other Arrangements
In 1998, the Company entered into an employment agreement with Patrick W. Smith pursuant to which he agreed to serve as its Chief Executive Officer.
In December 2002, the Company entered into an employment agreement with Douglas E. Klint pursuant to which he agreed to serve as its General Counsel.
In May 2004, the Company entered into an employment agreement with Daniel M. Behrendt pursuant to which he agreed to serve as its Chief Financial Officer.

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The Company may terminate each of these officers with or without cause. The conditions or events triggering the payment of severance benefits include the executive’s death, disability, termination without cause, or termination due to change in control of the Company (i.e., double-trigger). Conditions to the payment of severance benefits include covenants relating to assignment of inventions, nondisclosure of Company confidential information, and non-competition with the Company for a period of 18 months after termination of employment without cause or change in control of the Company. The table below depicts the severance payable to each NEO under the conditions indicated:
 
  
Termination
  
Termination
  
Termination due to
  
 
Name
  
with Cause
  
without Cause
  
Change in Control
  
Death or Disability
Patrick W. Smith
  
2 months salary
  
12 months salary
  
24 months salary
  
18 months salary
Daniel M. Behrendt
  
2 months salary
  
12 months salary
  
24 months salary
  
18 months salary
Douglas E. Klint
  
2 months salary
  
12 months salary
  
24 months salary
  
18 months salary
Depending upon the triggering event for termination of employment, non-vested stock options previously granted may be subject to accelerated vesting. In addition, all non-vested RSUs and PSUs may immediately vest at target levels and restrictions would lapse. Accelerated vesting conditions are as follows:
Termination with cause: no accelerated vesting
Termination without cause and Termination due to Death or Disability: acceleration of all awards that vest based on service requirements only.
Termination due to Change in Control: acceleration of all awards
The severance benefit amounts with respect to the above triggering events were determined based on competitive practices. The Company agreed to pay these variable amounts of compensation as severance benefits or change of control benefits in order to attract and retain NEOs.
The table below reflects the severance compensation that would be provided to each of the NEOs of the Company assuming the termination of such executive’s employment occurred on December 31, 2015.
Named Executive Officer
 
Voluntary Termination
By Executive
 
Termination
with Cause
 
Termination
without
Cause (1)
 
Change of
Control (1)
 
Death or
Disability (1)
Patrick W. Smith
 
$

 
$
58,333

 
$
893,615

 
$
1,962,118

 
$
1,068,615

Daniel M. Behrendt
 

 
50,000

 
823,956

 
1,463,877

 
973,956

Douglas E. Klint
 

 
50,000

 
645,696

 
1,503,054

 
795,696

(1)  
Includes the intrinsic value of non-vested stock options which would immediately vest and become exercisable as well as the value of non-vested PSUs and RSUs which would immediately vest and restrictions would lapse.
The value of option acceleration is equal to the difference between the $17.29 closing market price of shares of the Company’s common stock on December 31, 2015 (the last trading day in fiscal 2015), and the weighted average exercise price of awards with an exercise price less than the market price times the number of share subject to such options that would accelerate.
The value of restricted stock unit acceleration is equal to the $17.29 closing market price of shares of the Company’s common stock on December 31, 2015, multiplied by the number of units that would accelerate.
The following table shows the value of the accelerated vesting as described above.
Name
 
Total Service-
based Award
Acceleration
 
Total Performance-
based Award
Acceleration
 
Total Acceleration
Patrick W. Smith
 
$
543,615

 
$
718,503

 
$
1,262,118

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
523,956

 
339,921

 
863,877

Douglas E. Klint
 
345,696

 
243,858

 
589,554


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Perquisites and Other Personal Benefits
We do not provide our NEOs with significant perquisites or other benefits, except for Company matching contributions to our defined contribution benefit plans and health care benefits that are widely available to employees. The Committee periodically reviews the levels of perquisites and other benefits that could be provided to the NEOs.
Compensation Deductibility
Section 162(m) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the “Code”) imposes a limit on tax deductions for annual compensation in excess of $1.0 million paid to the NEOs. This provision excludes certain forms of “performance-based compensation,” including options and performance-based stock-based awards, from the compensation taken into account for purposes of that limit. The Committee believes that the performance-based incentive plans are “performance-based” within the meaning of Section 162(m). The Committee believes that it is desirable for executive compensation to be fully tax deductible. However, whenever the Committee’s judgment would be consistent with the objectives for which compensation is paid, we will compensate our NEOs fairly in accordance with our compensation philosophy, regardless of the anticipated tax treatment. The Committee will from time-to-time continue to assess the impact of Section 162(m) of the Code on its compensation practices and will determine what further action, if any, may be appropriate in the future.


COMPENSATION COMMITTEE REPORT
The Compensation Committee has reviewed and discussed with management the Compensation Discussion and Analysis included in this proxy statement. Based on these reviews and discussions, the Compensation Committee recommended to the Board of Directors that the Compensation Discussion and Analysis be included in the this Proxy Statement.
The Compensation Committee:
Hadi Partovi, Chair
John S. Caldwell
Michael Garnreiter
Judy Martz

The foregoing Compensation Committee Report will not be deemed to be incorporated by reference by any general statement incorporating by reference this proxy statement into any filing under the Securities Act or under the Exchange Act, except to the extent that the Company specifically incorporates this information by reference, and will not otherwise be deemed filed under such Acts.


COMPENSATION COMMITTEE INTERLOCKS AND INSIDER PARTICIPATION
No member of the Compensation Committee is, or was during or prior to fiscal 2015, an officer or employee of the Company or any of its subsidiaries. None of the Company’s executive officers serves as a director or member of the compensation committee of another entity in a case where an executive officer of such other entity serves as a director or member of the Compensation Committee.

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SUMMARY COMPENSATION TABLE
Name and Principal Position
 
Year
 
Salary ($)
(1)
 
Bonus
($)
 
Stock
Awards ($)
(2)
 
Non-Equity
Incentive Plan
Compensation
($) (3)
 
Change in
Pension Value
and
Nonqualified
Deferred
Compensation
Earnings ($)
(4)
 
All Other
Compensation
($) (5)
 
Total ($)
Patrick W. Smith
 
2015
 
$
350,000

 
$

 
$
752,676

 
$
263,500

 
$

 
$
17,846

 
$
1,384,022

Chief Executive Officer
 
2014
 
344,167

 

 
749,994

 
335,338

 

 
15,682

 
1,445,181

 
 
2013
 
312,488

 

 
700,324

 
51,970

 

 
12,138

 
1,076,920

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Luke S. Larson
 
2015
 
244,167

 

 
650,901

 
105,400

 

 
20,069

(7)  
1,020,537

President
 
2014
 
158,308

 

 

 
47,484

 

 
18,548

 
224,340

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Daniel M. Behrendt
 
2015
 
300,000

 

 
600,901

 
158,100

 

 
26,908

 
1,085,909

Chief Financial Officer
 
2014
 
298,333

 

 
425,006

 
201,203

 

 
21,634

 
946,176

 
 
2013
 
311,985

 

 
475,259

 
31,759

 

 
14,789

 
833,792

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Douglas E. Klint
 
2015
 
300,000

 

 
170,000

 
52,700

 

 
14,961

 
537,661

General Counsel
 
2014
 
298,333

 

 
425,006

 
67,068

 

 
11,487

 
801,894

 
 
2013
 
298,393

 

 
475,259

 
31,759

 

 

 
805,411

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Marcus W. L. Womack
 
2015
 
235,000

 

 
426,024

 
136,891

 

 
18,117

 
816,032

General Manager of Axon
 
2014
 
228,729

 

 
250,007

 
212,973

 

 
12,607

 
704,316

 
 
2013
 
46,923

 

 
1,078,606

(6)  

 

 
*

 
1,125,529

Joshua M. Isner
 
2015
 
181,142

 

 
200,000

 
502,276

 

 
19,596

 
903,014

EVP of Global Sales
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Less than $10,000 is denoted by *
(1)  
In 2013, the Company discontinued its personal time off ("PTO") program for non-exempt employees, moving to an honor program and subsequently paid each employee his PTO balance in cash. This figure for each NEO is included in the Salary column.
(2)  
The amounts in these columns reflect the aggregate grant date fair value for RSUs and stock options computed in accordance with stock-based accounting rules (ASC Topic 718). Pursuant to SEC regulations, the amounts shown exclude the impact of estimated forfeitures related to service-based vesting conditions. Assumptions included in the calculation of this amount for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2015 is included in footnote 1q to our financial statements for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2015 , included in our Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC. For performance share unit awards, the value included in this column represents the grant-date fair value assuming the performance measures are achieved at target level.  The grant-date fair value of the performance share awards assuming achievement of the maximum performance levels for the 2015 awards is approximately $950,000, $500,000, $550,000, $250,000 and $200,000 for Messrs. Smith, Larson, Behrendt, Womack and Isner, respectively. 
(3)  
In 2015 , all the Company’s NEOs received non-equity incentive compensation as a result of exceeding target metrics around sales and other operating measures. Their 2015 incentive compensation was provided in the form of cash payouts, of which 15% of targeted amounts were paid in May, August and November with the remaining 55% with adjustments made for actual results, paid in February 2016. In addition, Mr. Womack and Mr. Isner earned sales-related commissions of $82,083 and $502,276, respectively. In 2014, all the Company’s NEOs received non-equity incentive compensation as a result of exceeding target metrics around sales and other operating measures. Their 2014 incentive compensation was also provided in the form of cash payouts. In addition, Mr. Womack earned sales commissions of $126,038 in 2014. In 2013, all the Company’s NEOs received non-equity incentive compensation as a result of exceeding target metrics around sales and other operating measures. Their 2013 incentive compensation was provided in PSUs up to 100% of target, with any additional amounts due in cash.
(4)  
The Company maintains a non-qualified deferred compensation plan for certain executives, key employees and non-employee directors through which participants may elect to postpone the receipt and taxation of a portion of their compensation. All gains or losses are allocated fully to plan participants and the Company does not guarantee a rate of

TASER International, Inc. | 2016 Proxy Statement | 28

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return on deferred balances. The Company does not make discretionary payments to the plan. There were no above-market returns for participants in the plan, as such, no amounts are reported here.
(5)  
Unless otherwise noted, other compensation consists of 401(k) and Health Savings Account matching and a Company paid executive retreat.
(6)  
In 2013, the Company granted long-term non-incentive equity awards to Mr. Womack in connection with the Company's acquisition of Familiar, Inc.
(7)  
Other compensation for Mr. Larson includes $6,000 of education reimbursements.


2015 GRANTS OF PLAN-BASED AWARDS
The following table shows information about awards made under various compensation plans during 2015 :
 
 
 
 
 
Estimated future payouts under
non-equity incentive plan awards
 
Estimated future payouts under
equity incentive awards
 
All other
stock
awards:
Number of
shares
of stock
or units
(#)
 
Grant
date fair
value of
stock
and
option
awards
($) (1)
Name
 
Grant
Date
 
 
Threshold
($)
 
Target
($)
 
Maximum
($)
 
Threshold
(#)
 
Target
(#)
 
Maximum
(#)
 
Patrick W. Smith
 
2/19/2015
(2)  
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
11,046

 
300,000

 
 
2/19/2015
(4)  
 

 

 

 
8,334

 
16,667

 
33,334

 

 
452,676

 
 
 
 
 
125,000

 
250,000

 
375,000

(5)  

 

 

 

 

Luke S. Larson
 
2/19/2015
(3)  
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
18,409

 
500,000

 
 
2/19/2015
(4)  
 

 

 

 
2,778

 
5,556

 
11,112

 

 
150,901

 
 
 
 
 
50,000

 
100,000

 
150,000

(5)  

 

 

 

 

Daniel M. Behrendt
 
2/19/2015
(2)  
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
11,046

 
300,000

 
 
2/19/2015
(3)  
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
5,523

 
150,000

 
 
2/19/2015
(4)  
 

 

 

 
2,778

 
5,556

 
11,112

 

 
150,901

 
 
 
 
 
75,000

 
150,000

 
225,000

(5)  

 

 

 

 

Douglas E. Klint
 
2/19/2015
(2)  
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
6,259

 
170,000

 
 
 
 
 
25,000

 
350,000

 
675,000

(5) (7)  

 

 

 

 

Marcus W.L. Womack
 
2/19/2015
(3)  
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
9,205

 
250,000

 
 
2/19/2015
(4)  
 

 

 

 
3,241

 
6,481

 
12,962

 

 
176,024

 
 
 
 
 

 
100,000

 
100,000

(6)  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Josh M. Isner
 
2/19/2015
(3)  
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
7,364

 
200,000

 
 
 
 
 

 
350,000

 
350,000

(7)  

 

 

 

 

(1)  
Grant date fair value of RSUs, computed in accordance with stock-based compensation accounting rules (ASC 718). The fair value of each RSU is the closing price of our common stock on the date of grant.
(2)  
RSUs granted vest annually over a period of three years from the grant date
(3)  
RSUs granted are scheduled to vest over a five-year period in increments of 5%, 5%, 10%, 30%, and 50% for the years ended February 28, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020, respectively
(4)  
The amount of PSUs that will ultimately vest, if any, is based upon the compounded annual revenue growth rates for the total Company and the Axon segment (excluding TASER Cam) compared to target for the three-year period ending December 31, 2017. Earned PSUs cliff vest at the end of that period. Should actual performance metrics exceed targeted metrics, executives will receive additional PSUs, up to a maximum of 200% of target.
(5)  
Payouts under the 2015 annual cash incentive plan was based on the achievement of annual financial goals, including goals related to: consolidated revenue, Axon bookings (as defined in SEC filings), operating income for the TASER Weapons segment, consumer sales, active users on Evidence.com and international revenue. However, consumer sales and active users are calculated on a linear payout and therefore have no maximum payout. Actual awards earned in 2015 are included in the Non-Equity Incentive Plan Compensation column in the Summary Compensation Table.
(6)  
Messrs. Womack and Isner were eligible for commissions based on sales growth for the Company. There was no maximum amount related to these commissions, therefore the maximum is reported as the same amount as the target.

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(7)  
In addition to the 2015 annual incentive cash payouts discussed above, Mr. Klint was eligible for commissions based on targeted sales to specific international customers. There was no threshold amount for this commission plan, with a maximum amount of potential commissions of $600,000.


OUTSTANDING EQUITY AWARDS AT FISCAL 2015 YEAR-END
The following table includes certain information with respect to outstanding options previously awarded to the NEOs as of December 31, 2015 .
 
 
Option Awards
 
Stock Awards
Name
 
Number of
Securities
Underlying
Unexercised
Options
Exercisable
(#)
 
Number of
Securities
Underlying
Unexercised
Options
Unexercisable
(#)
 
Equity 
Incentive
Plan Awards:
Number of
Securities
Underlying
Unexercised
Unearned
Options
(#)
 
Option 
Exercise
Price
($)
 
Option 
Expiration
Date
 
Number of
Shares or 
Units
of Stock That
Have Not 
Vested
(#)
 
Market 
Value 
of Shares
or Units
of Stock
That Have 
Not Vested
($)
 
Equity 
Incentive
Plan Awards:
Number of
Unearned Shares,
Units or Other
Rights That Have
Not Vested
(#)
 
Equity 
Incentive
Plan Awards:
Market or 
Payout Value 
of Unearned
Shares, Units
or Other Rights
That Have
Not Vested
($)
Patrick W. Smith
 
58,962

 

 

 
10.29

 
5/25/2017

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
68,828