Maritime Tech – Beyond Just Counting Startups

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While impressive, the sheer number of startups addressing Ports, Shipping and Logistics challenges does not tell the full story. Studies and articles demonstrate a significant increase in innovation addressing the maritime sector. That’s a fact all stake holders can attest to.

It is time to present more in-depth analysis.

Comparing DEMAND for new technologies with SUPPLY is one way to provide interesting insight. I would like to share an exercise we conducted at theDOCK:

  1. We first collected all challenges intimated with us by some 43 of the leading organizations in the sector – Terminal Operators, Port Authorities, Vessel Operators, Owners, Classification Companies, Freight Forwarders and others. These industry leading giants have taken time to visit us in Israel, discuss challenges in-depth and explore jointly exciting opportunities.
  2. We grouped the challenges into DEMAND SIDE CATEGORIES such as Logistics, Port Operations, Environment, Safety etc. and ranked the categories from the highest (i.e. most popular) to lowest.
  3. We then reviewed a few hundreds of Startups which provide solutions to the Maritime sector. We clustered the solutions into the same categories as above, this time reflecting SUPPLY SIDE CATEGORIES and then ranked them as well.
  4. We compared the ranking (by category) of the DEMAND side to that of the SUPPLY side to solicit interesting observations.

Observations (based on an internal review conducted by theDOCK and relying on our own CRM and databases):

Logistics and Transport Value Chain came up as the top DEMAND category. That is, when collected challenges from our global partners, Logistics came up as the most “popular” category. When analyzing the number of startups’ solutions addressing this category (SUPPLY side) – this one ranked as the top one as well. We concluded that in the Logistics Category DEMAND and SUPPLY visible to us are aligned.

However, lets have a look at the Environment category. It came up 3rd ranking from the top in terms of popularity on the DEMAND side. However, in terms of startups which address Environment challenges, this category came up ranking 6th on the SUPPLY side. This proved to be a category where we experience mis-alignment. This triggered an action – scout for additional startups who present interesting technology solutions for Environment challenges.

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