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May 13,  2019
Bluetech Accelerator Ports & Shipping 4.0
Ocean Economy Accelerator with 87 Applications from 29 Countries

Bluetech Accelerator Ports & Shipping 4.0 received a total of 87 applications from 29 different countries at the end of its application process. This is an ambitious and innovative program for accelerating start-ups linked to the Ocean Economy. 

With 13 start-ups each, Portugal and the United States are the most represented countries, followed by India (with 10 applications), Germany (with five), and the United Kingdom (with 4). These figures illustrate the international reach of this initiative, while contributing to position Portugal as an innovative country in the Blue Economy.

The theme ‘Cargo and Fleet Performance Management' attracted 38% of the applications, followed by the 'Environmental Sustainability' challenge with 33%. ‘Process Optimization in Port Hinterland' received 31% of the application, the same as the other theme, centered on ‘Future Shipping Connectivity’.

The application phase started on March 4th and lasted until April 19th. The selection phase, which involves all the partners, is now taking place until May 17th, with an event inserted in the European Maritime Day (Lisbon) where the 40 best entries will pitch their solutions. 

Later, on June 24th, a five-day bootcamp will begin, culminating in the selection of the start-ups to enter the piloting stage on June 28th. The end of the program will take place in a 'Demo Day' to be held in October, with the presentation of the results and solutions found. 

This initiative is promoted by the Portuguese Ministry of Sea, through the Directorate-General for Maritime Policy, and the Luso-American Development Foundation (FLAD). It has the partnerships of the Port of Leixões, Port of Sines, ETE Group, Portline Group, Inmarsat and Tekever. The program is being implemented by Beta-i.

These partners will participate in the selection and financing of the winning start-ups, which will be announced in the last quarter of 2019. The program has crucial maritime-port players on board, proving that the 'blue acceleration' of the Ocean Economy is able to mobilize the companies that lead the sector.

Topics such as Big Data, Internet of Things (IoT), Automation and Robotization of Ports, Autonomous Systems, Smart Shipping or Maritime Surveillance are some of the trends with potential for disruption in the Portuguese maritime-port sector, and represent some of the areas covered by this program.

What is the Bluetech Accelerator 

Bluetech Accelerator’s main goal is the creation of an ecosystem of innovation in the Portuguese Ocean Economy. The intention is to identify, select and capacitate the start-ups with sustainable business models and potential for integration of pilots with the major national and international players of the Blue Economy.

This initiative is part of the Ocean Portugal Program, developed jointly by the Portuguese Ministry of Sea and FLAD, which aims to develop blue innovation and entrepreneurship. It also responds to one of the strategic guidelines of the Portuguese Government, which aims to increase the weight of the sustainable Ocean Economy in the national GDP. And this is a goal that involves policies and initiatives that stimulate the increase of technological intensity, sustainability and sophistication of business models of the blue economy.




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