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Cornerstone Stake In Pulse Data International

Orion Announces 10% Cornerstone Stake In Pulse Data International

Christchurch-based electricity network company Orion New Zealand has today announced it has taken a 10% stake in the successful Christchurch company, Pulse Data International, one of the world’s leading designers and manufacturers of electronic devices for totally blind and partially sighted people.

Announcing the move, Orion managing director Chris Laurie said Orion’s cornerstone investment in Pulse Data International meant the company could now expand its global business, with spin-off for employment and the Christchurch economy.

“Pulse Data International has been very successful in recent years and has gained an international reputation for designing and manufacturing electronic aids for totally blind and partially sighted people. We are very pleased to be involved in funding the next phase in the company’s growth.”

Since its formation in 1988, Pulse Data has been largely management-owned. “As a Canterbury-based investor, we are keen to invest in local companies which will benefit from our involvement,” Mr Laurie says.

Welcoming the investment, Pulse Data’s Managing Director Russell Smith says Orion’s sound backing and support will allow the company to continue its expansion. “We can now continue to expand our product range and our operations and growth internationally.”

The investment in Pulse Data is one of a number of successful investments Orion has in technology companies. Its investment in energy-related technologies and infrastructure began in the early 1990s. Over the years it has built up considerable expertise in managing investments.

Income and capital gains from Orion’s investments, which included the gas network company Enerco, have contributed to the company’s ability to provide significant dividends to its shareholders, the Christchurch City Council and Selwyn and Banks Peninsula Councils, in recent years.


Ends

For further information contact:
Orion New Zealand
Chris Laurie
Managing Director
Phone 03 363 9806
Pulse Data International
Greg Thompson
Business Development Manager
Phone: 03 353 2891
Email: gregt@pulsedata.com

Background information
Orion New Zealand
Orion is the Canterbury-based electricity network company which has substantial interests and expertise in the management of technology, and particularly energy-related technology, investments. It takes an active interest in the majority of its investments, sharing its business networks and management expertise with those companies with which it is involved. In addition to its investment in Pulse Data, Orion has investments in wireless communications, energy consulting and customer information, small-scale generation and energy efficient fluid heating technologies. It is also a founding partner in the Canterbury Innovation Incubator.
Pulse Data International
Pulse Data International was formed in January 1988. It evolved from a buyout by management of the Blindness and Low Vision subsidiary of Wormald International NZ Limited, formed in 1976. Under Dr Russell Smith’s direction and guidance, Pulse Data has gained an international reputation as a major manufacturer of speech synthesizers, screen reading software, a range of large print reading systems and integrated Braille and speech technology

Designed and manufactured in Christchurch, 98% of Pulse Data’s products are exported to more than 30 countries. To service its major markets Pulse Data has established marketing companies in the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia and sales offices in Canada, Sweden and The Netherlands. The company has received a number of awards, including the Innovative Technology Commendation Award from the New Zealand Foundation for Research, Science and Technology.

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