12 Initiatives for the Maritime Industry

29 September 2017

MPA’s Smart Port Challenge 2017: Start-ups pitch their ideas on Demo Day

       In support of Singapore’s Smart Nation vision, the Smart Port Challenge 2017 (SPC 2017) organised by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), had 12 start-ups pitch their maritime-related proof-of-concepts (POC) in response to industry challenge statements on Demo Day. 

2.   Gracing the event at The Meeting Point, LaunchPad@One-North was Dr Lam Pin Min, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Transport & Ministry of Health. 

3.   Together with TNB Ventures and MPA’s industry partners, MPA launched SPC 2017 in June earlier this year, inviting start-ups to submit proposals to tackle a series of challenges faced in the maritime industry. 

4.   Since the launch, a total of 81 proposals were received, and an initial 61 start-ups’ proposals were shortlisted for a round of workshops. These workshops were a platform for start-ups to understand more about business opportunities in the maritime industry as well as seek feedback from MPA’s industry partners on their proposals. After another round of deliberation, MPA further shortlisted another 29 start-ups. 

5.   A final of 12 start-ups were subsequently selected to further develop POCs which were pitched on Demo Day to a panel of judges that consisted of maritime industry experts and leaders. Some of the technologies used in these POCs include; the use of Augmented and Virtual Reality to simulate safe and realistic training in a port environment for quay crane operations and container lashings, an intelligent chatbot with machine learning capability to enhance customer service for ferry customers, and the application of blockchain to digitise shipping documents in the sea transport logistics supply chain. These basic workable prototypes can be further developed beyond the event.   

6.     The top winner of Demo Day walked away with S$5,000 in cash. Second and third prizes worth S$3,000 and S$2,000 were also awarded respectively. Three prizes of 'Honourable Mention', worth S$800 each were also given out. 

7.    Moving forward, these 12 start-ups from Demo Day will be eligible to apply for funding support of up to S$50,000 to develop fully functional solutions with opportunities to test-bed their product with MPA’s industry partners. They can also look forward to funding support from other venture capitalists or apply for MPA’s Maritime Innovation and Technology (MINT) fund to further their research and development of the project.  

8.    Mr Andrew Tan, Chief Executive of MPA, said, “SPC 2017 is part of MPA’s wider efforts to promote innovation in the maritime sector. The various prototypes demonstrate how we can leverage novel technologies for practical applications in the industry, helping to improve productivity, streamline operations, and save costs. Through such platforms, we hope to attract more start-ups to the maritime sector in future runs. We will also be exploring potential collaboration with other accelerator programmes to give our efforts a boost.”

For more information: 

Please refer to Annex A for the list of winners, description of proposals and a selection of event photos.

Please refer to Annex B for the event briefing kit.