Norsat International Inc., provider of satellite based solutions for high speed data transmission, has announced that it is investing $1,200,000 in Tonse Solutions, a wireless broadband operator in Malawi, Africa. $500,000 of the investment will represent a 19.99% equity stake in Tonse, and the remaining $700,000 will be in the form of a 3-year convertible bond carrying an interest rate of 10%. In conjunction with this investment, Norsat has received a purchase order from Tonse for $1,000,000 worth of wireless equipment and software to build a wireless broadband system in Lilongwe, the capital of Malawi.

Tonse, based in Lilongwe, is a newly licensed broadband network operator that will utilize wireless networking technologies to offer the community reliable and affordable voice, data, and video communications, something that is currently limited throughout Malawi. The initial target markets will be government, corporate, public and private schools, hospitals, hotels, and NGOs. Eventually, individual consumers will be included.

President and CEO of Norsat, Dr. Amiee Chan, said, “This is an important initiative for Norsat to develop a reference site for our wireless networking division. This investment is a natural fit for Norsat, with our vision to be a dominant provider of communications in remote and austere regions of the world. By assisting Tonse to establish its broadband capabilities in a market like Malawi, Norsat International has the potential opportunity to reap the rewards of being a partner to service providers in emerging markets.”

Tonse Solutions CEO, Jam Kaunda, commented, “Tonse will be the first to offer a true broadband experience, including a faster, safer, and more affordable connection. We are extremely pleased to partner with Norsat to bring the next generation wireless technology to our community. The technology that will be deployed will be a more reliable, more robust and more affordable communications service. We look forward to growing our business together with Norsat and creating a mutually profitable and lasting relationship.”

Norsat, headquartered in Vancouver, with offices around the world, designs and markets microwave components, satellite systems, maritime navigation and communication systems, and end-to-end network systems.