Friday, 28 August 2020 11:31

Beam keeps net profit steady despite COVID-19 pandemic

Beam keeps net profit steady despite COVID-19 pandemic Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay

ASX-listed mobile satellite technology firm Beam Communications has kept its net profit for 2019-20 steady despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, with the company reporting $341,000 for the financial year, against $339,000 in 2018-19.

Revenue fell by 16.1% to $14.92 million from a record figure in the previous financial year; the 2018-19 figure was attained due to a sum of $3.85 million from a Thuraya WE order.

The company's earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation increased by 43% over the previous year to $3 million , while its underlying net profit after tax was steady at $341,419 (FY19: $339,000).

Beam said continuing strong demand for its organic product suite was good and major order fulfilments from Iridium and ZOLEO were responsible for this performance.

The company said the main highlight of the 2019-20 year had been the launch of its ZOLEO satellite messaging solution in late January in North America and Australia.

In the second half of FY2020, Beam received from Zoleo, its 50% owned joint venture vehicle, orders for 10,000 units, which have since been supplemented by an order for yet another 5000 in July.

Beam said it also received the seventh order for its Iridium GO! device in FY2020. The latest order of 5000 units, to be delivered in FY2021, from NASDAQ-listed Iridium takes the total units ordered to 45,000 over the past six years, making it the most profitable in Beam’s history.

The company said it was the only Australian firm, and one of seven worldwide, to be chosen by Iridium to develop the next generation of Iridium Certus devices, which have data speeds that are more than 35 times faster than the previous generation of Iridium transceivers.

Beam Communications managing director Michael Capocchi said the company had shown resilience through what he described as one of the most difficult periods in its history.

"While the outlook for the current financial year remains highly unpredictable, we are in a good position to build on the momentum we've achieved, particularly given the good traction we are seeing for our newly launched ZOLEO unified messaging solution that automatically switches between satellite, mobile and Wi-Fi networks," he said.

"Beam will also benefit from the new COVID normal world with social distancing set to remain a feature even if a vaccine is found. This is because demand for personal satellite communication devices is likely to increase as consumers seek recreational activities that are off the beaten track and away from crowded city centres."

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Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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