Yara Marine launches ‘green maritime’ start-up accelerator competition

The Norwegian company is moving forwards on its ambition to diversify away from scrubber manufacture with the launch of its new corporate accelerator program, Yara Marine X.

The start-up competition is looking to provide ‘a technology and solutions that will contribute to a greener maritime industry,’ the company said today.

In July Yara Marine Technologies COO, Ina Reksten, spoke about the damaging impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the company’s core scrubber manufacturing business and she signalled that Yara Marine would be looking to extend the scope of its activities into ‘green’ shipping.

She highlighted that: ‘The focus is on what we call “close to core” technologies, in the intersection between green and maritime.

‘We believe the industry needs companies who can provide a scope of technologies outside the traditional maritime sphere.’

The new start-up accelerator competition opens for entries today (1 September) and runs until 11 October. The winner will be announced on 4 November.

‘Our corporate mission is to nurture the next generation of high value, high performance sustainable ocean technologies,’ said Yara Marine CEO Thomas Koniordos.

‘With this new program, we are seeking to position Yara Marine in the global start-up space while developing new opportunities for the company.’

 The competition is seeking to attract ‘mature start-ups looking for partners and investors,’ said Yara Marine.

‘We will be recruiting young companies or professionals with a focus on sustainability and green solutions within vessel operations,” explained Strategy Business Development Manager Thomas Gabestad.

‘Candidates will need to be adjacent to what we do in order to enhance our corporate performance as a whole and help us to build on our strong brand.’

The winner will take part in a two-week bootcamp orientation, followed by six months in a tailored accelerator program.

‘The program includes office space, a $10,000 up-front stimulus grant, potential later-stage investment from Yara Marine, and access to the company’s mentors, network and facilities. Piloting and distribution opportunities with Yara Marine customers, suppliers and network are part of the longer-term plan.

Gabestad notes that target sources include ocean and maritime clusters, incubators, universities, various maritime programs, and the global start-up media. Key markets for the new technologies will be Asia, the Americas, and Europe.

‘The winning candidate will take up residence at our Headquarters in Oslo,’ said Gabestad.

Lesley Bankes-Hughes

Lesley Bankes-Hughes