Singapore-based tonnage provider Eastern Pacific Shipping has invested in an additional seven start-ups through its partnership with Techstars and another two startups outside of the programme.
Like the previous two years, the Eastern Pacific Accelerator attracted hundreds of applicants from across the world.
The company’s special advisor for innovation, Gil Ofer commented: “Our platform is designed to help entrepreneurs connect with internal and external mentors, customers and investors. The technology only plays one part in our investment decisions. The people behind the tech are more important. We want to see a strong team with visionary, resilient, and passionate founders. We like to invest in the people because even if the tech doesn’t work out as a business, we know we have bright individuals who will use that as a stepping stone for the next venture – and we want to be part of that journey.”
The start-ups include Graphite Innovation and Technologies, which uses a patented graphene based technology to reduce hull-fouling; shaft generator specialist Marine Edge and Marlo, which claims to be building the maritime and transportation industry’s first neo-bank. Other companies picked out are carbon capture specialist Seabound, lube checker SanChip, corrosion expert qualiTEAS, communications firm Sealution, anchor safety specialist Swiss Ocean Tech and weather prediction outfit, i4sea.
Decarbonisation is the shipping industry’s electric vehicle moment
Dhritiman Hui, who manages the EPS Techstars partnership, commented: “Decarbonisation is the shipping industry’s electric vehicle moment. Just like a Tesla came out of left field and outmanoeuvred most of the auto industry, we feel similar opportunities will emerge in the shipping industry. We are also pleased to have invested in the shipping industry’s first neo-bank. Neo-banks have created tens of billions of dollars of value in the traditional banking industry, and – given the gaps that exist – it’s inevitable that something similar will happen in this industry. Parallel to this, we have invested in companies whose IP is just exceptional.”