09/10/2012 04:50 EDT | Updated 11/10/2012 05:12 EST

Ballard Power Systems signs supply deal with new African distributor

VANCOUVER - Ballard Power Systems (TSX:BLD) has signed a deal to supply Inala Technologies, its new African distributor, with up to 192 methanol fuelled power systems.

The Vancouver-based fuel cell company also said that a purchase order for the first 32 systems, to be used by a mobile telecom operator, has also been received.

Financial terms of the agreement were not immediately available.

The power systems ordered will be used to provide backup power for extended periods in the event of grid failures.

Ballard sells fuel cell systems used in a range of applications.

The company recently acquired select assets from IdaTech, a Ballard customer for the past several years.

"This agreement with Inala is another important step forward in capitalizing on our recent transaction, under which we acquired select assets from IdaTech," Ballard president and chief executive John Sheridan said in a statement.

"We are confident in a significant growth market for backup power solutions and our comprehensive product portfolio, now consisting of both hydrogen and methanol fuelled systems, allows us to maximize the opportunity."