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Why Antitrust Concerns May Not Affect Axon's Growth

By Motley Fool Staff – Dec 10, 2021 at 3:00AM

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Could an FTC suit get in the company's way?

A pending FTC case may just be a speed bump for Axon (AXON 3.28%) on its path to dominating the body-cam market and transforming public safety.

In this segment of "Industry Focus" on Motley Fool Live, recorded on Dec. 1, Fool contributors Brian Stoffel and Emily Flippen discuss Axon's ability to grow while navigating an antitrust suit.

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Brian Stoffel: Yeah. That is one of the risks that I think is worth pointing out. We didn't mention this in our notes but they were really just two big players in this market, specifically body cameras two or three years ago. The other is Vievu. I believe I'm pronouncing that right. There's a bit of controversy that Vievu got the New York City Police Department contract and Axon didn't, so Axon bought them. Now, they're a combined entity.

There is a case with the FTC about needing to split them up. It has been sitting in the courts for a long time, there's not a whole lot of new news. I don't have any idea how you could logistically split them apart now because the New York City Police Department is using Axon's technology. But antitrust concerns are one thing to keep in mind.

On the other hand, I remember my first-week getting training at the Motley Fool, I saw a video by Tom Gardner and he said, "The fact of the matter is it's probably a good thing to own the shares of a company that people think might have antitrust concerns because it's doing so well that it's just dominating its market."

Emily Flippen: That's very much the case in Axon. You add on this overlay of, I guess you could call it political turmoil but I don't think it exists just in the United States. I think it exists internationally. That Axon is providing what is increasingly a really necessary solution for people, police forces, and even private companies and consumers across the world.

When you talk about potentially making legislation or changes in regulatory policy that can have such a visible and immediate impact on the transparency behind things like the use of force by police forces, it starts to become a conversation that's much more than just, well, is this an antitrust suit or is this not an antitrust suit?

For that reason, to your point, I don't like to speculate on what may or may not happen with that case in particular. I'm not sure it actually matters to the fundamentals of what's going to drive Axon's performance.

Brian Stoffel owns Axon Enterprise. Emily Flippen has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns and recommends Axon Enterprise. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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