Boston Consulting Group and MISC announce backing for trio of maritime start-ups

Boston Consulting Group’s (BCG) corporate innovation arm BCG Digital Ventures (BCGDV) has announced that it is bringing three maritime tech start-ups into its broader portfolio of innovative businesses, having invested in the firms last year alongside shipping company MISC Group while the new ventures were still in ‘stealth mode’.

The three start-ups – SOL-X, Chord X, and Spares CNX, all based in Singapore – have different focus areas but are all involved in the application of new technologies like artificial intelligence, machine learning and industrial IoT to the digitalisation of the shipping value chain.

“With 90% of the world’s goods transported by ships, and considering the fragmented attempts at innovation, we believe these investments are going to be absolutely transformative to the maritime industry, as well as to industries such as mining, energy, and industrial goods,” said Sid Shah, Managing Director & Partner and Global Leader of BCGDV’s Energy Practice.

“We couldn’t be more excited to support these teams on their bold journeys.”

SOL-X focuses on crew safety and compliance, with its application combining work time management with crew well-being data to deliver near real-time safety intelligence. SOL-X recently signed a multiyear fleetwide agreement to partner with Eaglestar for its technology.

Chord X is a maritime data analytics company using sensors, data analytics, machine learning and human experts to improve operational efficiency in maritime assets, providing predictive insights to support corrective action as required. It also provides an emissions module that supports regulatory reporting compliance, and is working toward decision support based on the impact of emission footprints from maritime assets.

Spares CNX offers an automated inventory management system to track the life cycle of spare parts on shore and across a fleet. The integrated hardware and software package, PROPELLER Ship, uses RFID, QR codes and other imaging technologies to monitor the location and consumption of spares on portable tablets. The device interacts with pre-tagged spare parts, so data is captured at the time and place of work and flows directly into existing PMS or ERP systems.

“We are proud to invest in these three digital start-ups, which in many ways allow us to explore available opportunities to harness the power of digitalisation in the maritime industry. The challenges faced by the shipping industry brought about by the global COVID-19 pandemic have forced us to rethink our approaches and operational practices,” said Yee Yang Chien, President/Group CEO of MISC.

“I believe that in order for us to move forward, we must be bold in exploring the endless opportunities to further improve operational excellence in various areas, including safety and process efficiency. I am confident about the prospects that the three digital ventures offer and that this partnership will enhance our contribution toward the sustainability of MISC Group’s environmental, social, and governance agenda.”

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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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