Singapore’s maritime tech startups get a boost

Classification society ABS and corporate innovation and venture development firm Rainmaking have decided to collaborate to support Singapore’s entrepreneurs with maritime decarbonization technologies.


As explained, ABS’ marine and offshore industry experience combined with Rainmaking’s register of decarbonization-focused startups are expected to allow rapid testing and development of transformational technologies with the potential to reduce CO2 emissions.

Specifically, the program will identify technology startups and deliver scalable pilots and ventures through six-month long sprints. ABS will act as a technical advisor to provide industry insights and evaluate new technologies for their potential contribution to IMO decarbonization goals.

“By collaborating with Rainmaking, we are ensuring the transformational ideas our industry needs to reach its decarbonization goals are identified and supported to rapidly achieve the scale required to make a significant contribution,” Georgios Plevrakis, ABS Director, Global Sustainability Strategy, said.

“We need to get much more progressive on how tech can change this industry – we see a like minded partner in ABS to achieve this,” Michael Pomerleau, Rainmaking Partner & Investor, commented.

Rainmaking is one of six co-investments partners appointed earlier this year by SEEDS Capital to provide the maritime ecosystem a strong leg-up by catalysing a combined S$50 million of investments into Singapore-based maritime technology startups. The initiative aims to drive the growth of the maritime sector through technology and innovation.

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Singapore announces greater support for maritime technology startups

To support Singapore’s ambition to be “the top maritime startup hub in the world”, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) has set aside $10 million from the Maritime Innovation and Technology (MINT) Fund to support the growth and development of maritime technology startups in Singapore.

 Under this expanded effort, MPA will also develop a digital technology marketplace and a startup playbook. The marketplace will connect maritime and venture capital companies with startups and facilitate discovery of solutions. The startup playbook serves as a comprehensive guide for startups to springboard into Singapore tapping on schemes and support programmes relating to talent, capital and R&D resources, according to MPA.

 MPA will introduce a new grant scheme called MINT-STARTUP. Startups that have completed the PIER71 or relevant maritime acceleration programmes in Singapore can apply for a grant of up to S$50,000 to pilot their projects. Promising startups looking to scale up their offerings or projects can also apply for a project grant of up to S$100,000. 

Photo: MPA

This was announced on 20 April by Chee Hong Tat, Senior Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Transport, at the 5th Singapore Maritime Technology Conference (SMTC). Along with the new grant scheme for startups, the MPA said it will push for wider industry adoption of digitalisation initiatives such as electronic bills of lading (eBL) and electronic bunker delivery note (eBDN) to drive productivity for the sector.