Tait Communications secures Texas deal
Christchurch's Tait Communications has won a six-figure deal to build and support a digital radio communications network for 400 police and firefighters in Jim Wells County, Texas.
Spokesman James Kyd said Tait had now had business in "hundreds" of the United States' 3000 counties. These could range in size from those with as few as five police officers to large cities, such as "metropolitan New York".
Kyd said the US market was much more fragmented than in New Zealand, where the Government is currently considering building a single radio network for all government agencies at a cost tipped by police to be at least $150 million.
"Our strategy is to get in there and win county by county and we are getting good traction."
So far, Tait has chosen not to compete for contracts in the largest US cities because of the cost and time involved, but it was working its way up the ladder and aimed to be the world's second-largest player in the public safety market behind giant Motorola, Kyd said.
"We don't think we can unseat [Motorola] in the short term."
Managing director Frank Owen said Tait now employed more than 900 staff, including more than 650 in Christchurch, where it was the city's largest private-sector employer.
"Approximately 30 per cent of our export volumes go to the Americas and we're looking forward to future opportunities in the region."