With few tech winners to start the week, satellite technology company Beam Communications (ASX:BCC) edged higher in morning trade on the back of a new sales agreement.

The company said it received an order for 7,750 units of its ZOLEO remote communications device, via its joint venture with Canadian partner Roadpost Inc.

That follows up on a 5,000-unit order in July, when the company flagged increasing optimism around opportunities in North America.

Shares in BCC initially rose by more than 10 per cent in morning trade, before easing back slightly.


From Canada to the US

Beam’s ZOLEO product allows for increased connectivity and messaging capability, for users that are outside the range or standard telecommunications network.

Beam said the new order was to meet increased demand from the Canadian market after BPS Direct — which owns outdoor shopping chains Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s — expanded its reseller agreement with Roadpost.

The expansion will see distribution of the ZOLEO product expanded into BPS’ US stores, as well as its Canadian outlets.

The latest sales order takes ZOLEO shipments above the 22,000 mark for the calendar year 2020, Beam said.

The company’s 2020 financial report showed underlying net profit held steady at $341,000 (FY19: $339,000).

Top-line revenues fell by 16.1 per cent to $14.9m, down from $17.8m in FY19 which was bolstered by a one-off order for 3,000 WE units by satellite network operator Thuraya.

Beam “did not receive a follow-on order in FY2020, and while Thuraya may still place further orders for the dual-band hotspot device in the current financial year, management decided it was prudent in this volatile environment to write-down the entire remaining capitalised development cost for the device”, the company said.

Despite that $1.1m write-down, Beam is optimistic about growth for the ZOLEO device over the next 12 months.

“Beam has so far secured commercial distribution and sales arrangements with 17 ZOLEO resellers, in addition to its online channels including Amazon Australia, eBay Australia and Myer Online,” the company said.

Canadian department store London Drugs Ltd has also commenced selling ZOLEO across its 80-store network.