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Maersk invests in electrofuels startup company

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Maersk invests in electrofuels startup company. Image: Maersk
Maersk invests in electrofuels startup company. Image: Maersk
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Maersk Growth has made a leading venture investment in Prometheus Fuels, a Silicon Valley-based startup with a promising direct air capture-technology to enable cost efficient, carbon neutral eFuels for shipping.

The minority investment in Prometheus Fuels will support A.P. Moller – Maersk’s work to execute on the strategy to decarbonise marine operations.

Maersk expects several fuels to exist alongside in the future fuel mix and has identified 4 potential fuel pathways to decarbonization; biodiesel, alcohols, lignin-enhanced alcohols and ammonia.

The investment supports Maersk’s efforts with electrofuels which include alcohols produced from renewable energy. Along with biodiesel, alcohols including green methanol are feasible fuel technologies.

“Prometheus Fuels is developing a very exciting and innovative technology to produce carbon based electrofuels from direct air capture of CO2. Electrofuels are expected to play a key role for the decarbonisation of shipping and, if scaled successfully, Prometheus Fuels’ technology will address a key constraint for carbon based electrofuels – namely the cost competitiveness of direct air capture”, commented Morten Bo Christiansen Head of Decarbonisation, A.P. Moller – Maersk.

Maersk expects synthetic alcohols and other electrofuels to play a big role in the decarbonisation of shipping, due to its long-term scalability advantages compared to biobased fuels. Produced from renewable energy and water and ambient CO2 from direct air capture, it has the potential to offer infinite availability regardless of geographic scope.

“Our zero net carbon, zero sulphur electrofuel doesn’t compete with food production – it comes from renewable electricity and air so its feedstock is limitless. Our electrofuel offers a truly viable solution to decarbonise shipping – one that can scale and be implemented in time to avoid catastrophic global warming. We’re excited to partner with Maersk, a global leader in decarbonisation in the transportation and shipping industries, to accelerate this transition”, said Rob McGinnis, Founder and CEO of Prometheus Fuels.

Maersk joins a team of investors which includes BMW i Ventures and Metaplanet. Peter Votkjaer Jorgensen, Partner at Maersk Growth, will join the Board of Prometheus Fuels.

“Decarbonization is a strategic imperative of Maersk, so investing in this space is a natural focus point for Maersk Growth and one where we can offer value beyond capital through the expertise and scale of the Maersk organization. Prometheus’ technology has disruptive potential for the green fuel market, and we look forward to contributing as well as learning from this partnership in the years to come” said, Peter Votkjaer Jorgensen Venture Partner in Maersk Growth.

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Container Shipping Lines

ONE taps WAVE BL to advance eBL operations and scale global collaboration in digital trade

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ONE taps WAVE BL to advance eBL operations and scale global collaboration in digital trade. Image: Wikimedia Commons/ Goodwillgames
ONE taps WAVE BL to advance eBL operations and scale global collaboration in digital trade. Image: Wikimedia Commons/ Goodwillgames
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Ocean Network Express- ONE Pte. Ltd. has announced its plans to expand its electronic Bills of Lading- eBL offering with technology provider WAVE BL, with the objective to enhance and accelerate digital trade adoption across its supply chain.

ONE and WAVE BL have been working on eBL solutions and after successfully jointly completing the initial pilot rollout, ONE will start to extend the WAVE BL offering to more customers and business partners.

The blockchain-backed digital shipping platform ensures the highest legal, security, and privacy standards in the maritime shipping industry, providing an electronic alternative to traditional print documents.

ONE continues to position itself as a leader in early adoption for technological advancements that showcase improvements to the industry ecosystem. By digitizing title transfers, ONE anticipates operational workflow improvements that shorten document issuance time and transfer process. The eBL solution is expected to strengthen ONE’s overall ecommerce services. For its customers, the solution will cut administrative costs, whilst improving the overall process.

“As part of our digitalization journey, we have been focussing on our integration capability to strive for new digital offerings to our customers and partners. We started to offer the e-BL services via WAVE BL as a strategic partner to expedite core steps of the supply chain and save time and cost for our customers. With a robust solution and an increasing network, we aim to enhance our customer experience through rapid & paperless transfer,” says Sundeep Sibal, Global Head of Commercial & Service Management at Ocean Network Express Ltd.

WAVE BL will provide an end-to-end cryptographic endorsement and surrender system for issuing eBLs in real-time and offer onboarding support for ONE customers and business partners integrating onto the platform.

“This marks an important milestone for all parties involved and the shipping industry at large. Cooperation with ONE speaks volumes to the trajectory of digital trade and its immense influence in the market. We are excited to scale our solution with support from the leadership at ONE,” says Gadi Ruschin, CEO and co-founder at WAVE BL.

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Container Shipping Lines

MSC cooperates with key Chinese Research Institute to promote decarbonisation and sustainable shipping

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MSC cooperates with key Chinese Research Institute to promote decarbonisation and sustainable shipping. Image: MSC
MSC cooperates with key Chinese Research Institute to promote decarbonisation and sustainable shipping. Image: MSC
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MSC and the China Waterborne Transport Research Institute, an agency under China’s Ministry of Transport, signed a Memorandum of Understanding agreement to jointly promote decarbonisation and sustainable development of the shipping industry.

This is the first time MSC is partnering with a major institution in China to explore the technical pathway for decarbonisation.

The three-year agreement will leverage on the strengths of both parties to explore innovative ways to jointly cooperate on relevant research and activities, and discuss progress to find the range of solutions that will make maritime transportation even more efficient while continuing to serve as the backbone of global trade.

Mr Bud Darr, Executive Vice President Maritime Policy and Government Affairs, MSC Group and Mr Fei Wei Jun, President of China Waterborne Transport Research Institute, signed the agreement in an online ceremony on behalf of both organisations.

“The path to decarbonisation will require strong partnerships with key stakeholders across various business sectors and government. We are very excited to announce our partnership with the China Waterborne Transport Research Institute on this hugely important global priority. Sustainability and focus on climate issues have been fast-rising up the agenda in China, and we are looking forward to closely collaborating with the China Waterborne Transport Research Institute to accelerate innovation and R&D we urgently need to reach a net-zero carbon future for shipping,” said Darr.

Under the MoU framework, both organisations will establish a collaborative process dedicated to R&D, knowledge sharing and business collaboration. A designated chairperson from each organisation will jointly lead the steering committee, with a working committee in charge of implementing the activities. Industrial experts will also be invited to conduct assessments on the results of the research studies.

A number of specific studies and projects are already lined up for the near future, including studies on the technical pathway and relevant policies for low-carbon development of the Chinese shipping industry, strategy and roadmap for the energy structure of shipping.

Decarbonisation is at the top of MSC’s agenda. It is one of the biggest challenges that the world and the shipping industry faces and will remain a key priority for decades to come. MSC is actively working to further improve the efficiency of the container ships in its fleet to help reduce emissions. To complement the company’s massive investment in energy efficiency, it continues to study a range of different future fuel options such as hydrogen, ammonia, methanol and synthetic fuels.

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Maersk completes the acquisition of B2C Europe Holding B.V.

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Maersk completes the acquisition of B2C Europe Holding B.V. Image: Maersk
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This acquisition strengthens A.P. Moller – Maersk’s E-commerce Logistics products suite in line with its strategic business transformation.

“With B2C Europe, we are closing the circle around our E-commerce logistics expansion. Our logistics product line-up growth continues to support our long-term plans to help customers sell through any sales channel, deliver in any way, and manage their supply chains seamlessly. This year, by adding Visible SCM, HUUB and now B2C Europe´s capabilities we set out the foundation to upscale our platform and E-commerce skills globally, building product returns cycle´s defining B2C supply chain success.” , said Vincent Clerc, Executive Vice President and CEO of Ocean & Logistics, A.P. Moller – Maersk

The acquisition of B2C Europe will enable Maersk to offer Europe-wide last mile rates to customers in Europe, North America and China through one simplified interface. B2C Europe will bring an asset-light delivery product that uses technical integrations to collect parcels at its customers warehouses and inject them into all important European carrier networks.

“We look very much forward to the journey ahead. We put on the table expertise and skills which will enable Maersk´s customers to take full control and drive flexibility into their B2C supply chains.”, commented José Vega Vázquez B2C Europe´s CEO.

The company’s offering consists of labelling services, pick-ups, sorting parcels, linehaul and injection into the last mile delivery network of 100+ connected carriers across Europe, including full returns logistics mainly covering 35 European countries. B2C Europe is operationally present in four key European E-commerce countries (Netherlands, France, United Kingdom, and Spain), and has offices in China.

The value of the transaction is USD 86m post IFRS 16 which corresponds to an EV/EBITDA of 11x reflecting the strong growth outlook and synergies. Based on 2021-forecast the revenue is estimated to around USD 140m and with a post- IFRS 16 EBITDA of around USD 8m reflecting a margin of 5.7pct.

In the course of 2021, Maersk has expanded its E-commerce footprint with the acquisition of the US- based logistics company Visible MSC mid-August and five weeks after the acquisition of the Portuguese cloud-based logistics start-up, HUUB.

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