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Safariland, LLC
Founded 1964
Founder Neale Perkins
Headquarters Jacksonville, Florida
Products Body armor, armor systems, tactical accessories, protective gear, "less-lethal" weapons

Safariland, LLC is a United-States-based major designer and manufacturer of equipment for sporting, military, law enforcement, investigation and public safety personnel, formerly a division of BAE Systems, Inc. a subsidiary of the United Kingdom-based defence and aerospace company BAE Systems PLC. In late 2016 the company was the target of various protests after its "less lethal" munitions products, sold under the Defense Technology brand, were used during the highly publicized resistance to the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota.


The company was founded in Sierra Madre, California in 1964 by Neale Perkins, following his father's request for a custom holster. He named his new company after the African safaris he and his father took together.[1]

In 1996, American Body Armor and its shareholders joined forces to form Armor Holdings, a diversified holding company with three manufacturing sites. Over 11 years, Armor Holdings acquired various brands in the law enforcement industry, including Safariland.[2]

In July 2007, BAE Systems acquired Armor Holdings, forming the BAE Systems Products Group of which Safariland was a part. In August 2008, its products were launched under the name Safariland.[3]

In May 2012, BAE Systems announced that Safariland would be sold to an acquisition vehicle affiliated with Kanders & Co., Inc.; sale was finalized at the end of July 2012 for US$124 million.[4]

In December 2015, Safariland acquired Atlantic Tactical, the largest Law Enforcement equipment distributor in the northeastern United States. Safariland went on to make other acquisitions in the distribution channel starting in January 2016 with Lawmen's, headquartered in Raleigh, NC and followed in March 2016 with the purchase of United Uniforms in western New York. [5]

In November 2016 it was revealed that Safariland products were used by the Morton County Police Department against protesters of the Dakota Access Pipeline in a manner that drew condemnation from domestic and international human rights organizations and led to subsequent protests against the company.[6][7] Safariland, LLC became the target of protests after non-violent direct action in North Dakota was met with water cannons, CS gas, and concussion grenades; photographs of spent munitions manufactured by the company were retrieved by protesters and published on the internet.[8][9] Citing injuries to a thirteen-year-old girl shot in the face with rubber bullets whose vision was compromised[10] and 21 year old Sophia Wilanksy whose arm was struck by an exploding ordenance leading to her helicopter evacuation and fears her arm would be amputated,[11][12] the group Anonymous claimed responsibility for disrupting the Safariland website as well as the purchasing portal Safariland uses to manage online orders.[13][14] On December 9, 2016 Native American elders and protestors held a prayer and set up a community picket line at Safariland's Ontario, CA manufacturing facility disrupting operations at the location.[15]


Safariland manufacturers a wide array of products in the law enforcement space, but only markets a small number of them under the Safariland brand name. The majority of products are sold under other brand names that were acquired when the company became a part of Armor Holdings.

Products includes holsters, duty gear and restraints under the Safariland and Bianchi brands. Body armor is sold under the American Body Armor, Second Chance, SAVVY and PROTECH brands. Brands of firearms accessories and cleaning kits are B-Square, SpeedFeed, Kleen-Bore and BreakFree. Protective gear, such as riot helmets, shields and protective police gloves, and sold under the Hatch and Monadnock brands.[16]

Less lethal munitions and chemical OC, CN and CS sprays and foams are sold under the Defense Technology brand. A field narcotics testing line of products is produced under the NIK Public Safety and ODV brands, as well as consumable supplies for forensics and investigation personnel under the Forensics Source and Projectina brands.[17]


  1. ^ Smith, K. (1966). "Safariland Holsters". American Rifleman. National Rifle Association: 101. 
  2. ^ Barnett, Cynthia (October 1, 2012). "Safariland". Florida Trend  – via HighBeam Research (subscription required). 
  3. ^ "Warren Kanders to Buy Safariland from BAE Systems". Manufacturing Close Up  – via HighBeam Research (subscription required). August 2, 2012. 
  4. ^ Clinton, Michael (July 30, 2012). "Safariland sale finalized for $124 million". Jacksonville Business Journal. Retrieved October 25, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Safariland makes major East Coast acquisition". Biz Journal. Retrieved 30 December 2015. 
  6. ^ "Anonymous Takes Down Munitions Vendor Safariland After Sheriffs Attack #NoDAPL - UNICORN RIOT". UNICORN RIOT. 2016-11-22. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  7. ^ "Amnesty International USA to Monitor to North Dakota Pipeline Protests". Amnesty International USA. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  8. ^ "Police Attack Unarmed Water Protectors w/ Rubber Bullets, Tear Gas, and Water Cannons; 300+ injured - UNICORN RIOT". UNICORN RIOT. 2016-11-21. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  9. ^ "Unicorn Riot on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  10. ^ Wong, Julia Carrie (2016-11-21). "Dakota Access pipeline: 300 protesters injured after police use water cannons". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  11. ^ "Standing Rock water protector may lose arm after Sunday's clash with police says family - APTN NewsAPTN News". 2016-11-22. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  12. ^ Wong, Julia Carrie (2016-11-22). "Dakota Access pipeline protester 'may lose her arm' after police standoff". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  13. ^ hqanon (2016-11-25). "Anonymous Joins DAPL Fight By Shutting Down Website That Supplies Police With Grenades". AnonHQ. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  14. ^ "Anonymous Takes Down Munitions Vendor Safariland After Sheriffs Attack #NoDAPL - UNICORN RIOT". UNICORN RIOT. 2016-11-22. Retrieved 2017-02-19. 
  15. ^ X (December 11, 2016). "Community groups picket Safariland- a manufacturer of police weapons in Ontario, CA". LA Indymedia. 
  16. ^ Wagner, Scott W. (22 October 2009). Own the Night: Selection and Use of Tactical Lights and Laser Sights. Iola, Wisconsin: Gun Digest Books. p. 97. ISBN 1-4402-0371-7. 
  17. ^ Laska, Paul (April 1, 2008). "Shot Show 2008: a report for the forensic and technical investigator". Law Enforcement Technology  – via HighBeam Research (subscription required). 

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