International corporate innovation and venture development firm Rainmaking on Wednesday (15 July) said it has completed the first cycle of its far-reaching program for nurturing startups working toward the decarbonization of shipping.
A second six-month cycle is set to commence in August 2020, it added.
Scouting candidates for the first cycle of this vitally important program, Rainmaking said it initially identified 1,200 promising startups, with a cumulative funding of US$14 billion, based across 70 countries.
Of these, 145 candidate companies were given full due diligence screening and a final group of 51 selected for kick-off workshop participation (similar to a ‘demo day’).
Here, each startup pitched their proposed decarbonization solution, with those deemed most likely to succeed subsequently allocated partnerships with collaborating companies.
These included industry leaders such as Cargill, Inc., DNV GL, Hafnia (Member of BW Group), MC Shipping Ltd. (a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corp), Royal Dutch Shell, Vale S.A., and Wilh. Wilhelmsen Holding ASA.
Corporate partners would not take equity in the start-ups with which they collaborate. Instead, they would provide the start-ups with access to resources, real-world knowledge, and mentorship from experienced innovators and corporate leaders, it explained.
“Working with corporate partners and curated startups, accelerating technology capabilities to help the maritime industry tackle the big issues embodies the open innovation principles that Wilhelmsen fosters,” said Nakul Malhotra, Vice President Open Innovation for Wilhelmsen.
“This is not merely an exercise — these initiatives represent real, working collaborations between a corporate partner and an innovative startup,” added Tarun Mehrotra, Director, Trade & Transport at Rainmaking.
“Efforts such as these are essential to decarbonizing shipping within the next ten years. Taking action within the coming decade will prove pivotal to halting climate change and ensuring the resiliency of supply chains during a crisis like the one we are presently experiencing.”
The selected are addressing this issue and setting out to reduce shipping’s carbon emissions in a broad variety of ways, said Rainmaking.
These include the development of new or alternative energy sources; augmented reality (AR) solutions; AI and data-enabled CO2 reduction; increasing energy efficiency; automation, infrastructure and business model innovation; greater transparency in tracking of CO2 provenance and quantities; carbon offsetting; and improved vessel design.
Photo credit: Rainmaking
Published: 17 July, 2020
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