The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and NUS Enterprise, the entrepreneurial arm of the National University of Singapore (NUS), have formally launched the Smart Port Challenge (SPC) 2020 under Port Innovation Ecosystem Reimagined @ BLOCK71 (PIER71).
Start-ups participating in this year’s challenge will now have direct access to PIER71’s Venture Capital (VC) partner network for investment advice and opportunities.
Quah Ley Hoon, Chief Executive of MPA, said: “As the shipping industry grapples with COVID-19, many companies are already repositioning themselves for the new normal.
“There are opportunities for greater digitalisation, automation and adoption of new technology.
“The Smart Port Challenge comes in timely where start-ups join hands with the shipping companies to curate solutions to future-proof ourselves and build a more resilient maritime community; with the added venture capital funding steering more resources towards this important effort.”
Professor Freddy Boey, NUS Deputy President (Innovation and Enterprise), said, “PIER71 is part of our larger effort in developing deep-tech and industry-relevant programmes.
“It is even more pertinent now in helping to address real-world problems that have been identified by our maritime corporates who are ready and able to adopt viable and innovative solutions.
“From pivoting their business to be more relevant, to diverting and optimising their resources for operational efficiency, start-ups have stepped up to meet challenges and opportunities presented by this newly evolved environment.
“Through PIER71’s Smart Port Challenge, we look forward to seeing more innovative minds making positive impact with technology in the maritime industry and playing a key role in our recovery from COVID-19.”
Over 400 technology start-ups from Singapore, China, Japan, Denmark, Netherlands to US have participated in SPC to date, with 32 of them receiving grant funding of over $1.07 million (S$1.5 million) in total to develop and test-bed their solutions.