Research report explores growth of Singapore as maritime start-up hub

A new study detailing the growth of Singapore as a maritime ‘start-up magnet’ has been released, highlighting the impact of government programmes and local accelerators in driving innovation in the port city.

The Trade 2.0 Singapore Maritime Start-up and Innovation Ecosystem Report, published through the Inmarsat Research Programme, is the second such country-specific study of start-ups and their impact on maritime digitalisation, building on a global Trade 2.0 report launched in 2019 and a Japan Trade 2.0 report published in April 2020. The report is once again authored by Leonardo Zangrando, Founder of Startup Wharf, and Nick Chubb, Managing Director of Thetius.

With one-quarter of the world’s goods passing through the Singapore Strait each year, the report forecasts that Singapore’s maritime IT market alone could generate US$2.4billion in 2021 and reach US$4.8billion by 2030.

Two Singaporean accelerators are specifically highlighted as driving innovation for the shipping and offshore sectors.

Pier 71, founded by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and NUS Enterprise, has matched start-ups with backers including BP, Wilhelmsen, Pacific International Lines, Ocean Network Express, Cargotec, Wärtsilä, Vopak, and Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement. Meanwhile, the Techstars/Eastern Pacific Shipping ‘MaritimeTech Accelerator’ has provided a home to 18 emerging technology companies.

“Singapore is a maritime technology ‘David’ in a world of ‘Goliaths’ with a unique, agile and rapidly expanding innovation ecosystem for start-ups,” said Ronald Spithout, President, Inmarsat Maritime.

“Enabled by the Fleet Data IoT platform, Inmarsat’s Certified Application Provider (CAP) programme has grown dramatically in Singapore. We have five Singapore companies already in the programme, four of which are in scaleup mode. They cover vessel performance, video monitoring, fuel optimisation, crew wellbeing and more, and are among the maritime digitalisation pioneers.”

“We have also been working with start-up accelerators such as Rainmaking which signifies the importance of the country.”

The report can be downloaded for free here.

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Rob O'Dwyer

Rob is Chief Network Officer and one of the founders of Smart Maritime Network. He also serves as Chairman of the Smart Maritime Council. Rob has worked in the maritime technology sector since 2005, managing editorial for a range of leading publications in the transport and logistics sector. Get in touch by email by clicking here, or on LinkedIn by clicking here.

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