IkeGPS, the remote measuring device developer, has signed a $500,000 contract with a US utility company, and is pursuing similar larger deals with an update expected before the end of next month.

The Wellington-based company this month concluded the deal to provide software and mobile hardware to measure and model distribution power infrastructure to an unidentified investor-owned utility in the US, it said in a statement.

The contract should support ikeGPS's push to attract the biggest utilities in the US, it said.

"This is a very large customer who is addressing a common challenge in the US market - how to efficiently manage critical electric utility distribution while at the same time complying with stringent new regulatory legislation in the California market,"
chief executive Glenn Milnes said.

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"This deal is larger than typical initial purchase engagements and there is still considerable upside in terms of what overall account opportunities could look like for clients such as these over the coming 12 to 24 months.

"IkeGPS is forgoing profit as it chases growth in the US market, and sees opportunity in the intelligence and security sector. In October, ikeGPS expanded a deal with US defence technology investor In-Q-Tel to further develop its smartphone measuring tool, Spike, for US intelligence and security forces, and would beat contract sales forecast in its June prospectus.

Milnes said the company is working on other deals in the larger bracket, and expects to update the market before the end of March.The shares last traded at 75 cents, and have dropped from the $1.10 initial public offer price when ikeGPS listed in July, raising $25 million of new capital to fund its US expansion plans and pay for product development.