Denmark’s Blue World Technologies secures €11M to propel maritime decarbonization efforts

Aalborg-based Blue World Technologies recently concluded a €11 million pre-C-round financing, with Maersk Growth, the venture arm of A.P. Moller – Maersk, and the Export and Investment Fund of Denmark (EIFO) participating, alongside Cycle Group and other shareholders. Blue World Technologies specializes in fuel cell solutions for the maritime industry, particularly focusing on developing high-temperature PEM fuel cells that efficiently convert methanol to electricity, aiding in the decarbonization of shipping. The secured funding will bolster the company’s efforts to further advance their technology and expand their production capabilities, allowing them to scale up their production of core fuel cell components, drive system development, and enhance manufacturing processes, thus supporting the proliferation of their multi-megawatt fuel cell solutions aimed at achieving net-zero emissions in the maritime sector.

The financing round was announced during COP28 in Dubai where Blue World Technologies was presenting their high-temperature PEM fuel cell technology as a solution to support the decarbonisation of the maritime industry. The Danish Minister for Climate, Energy, and Utilities, Lars Aagaard was present at the announcement together with Alexa Ríos Araneda, Head of Strategic Business Innovation at Maersk Growth and Peder Lundquist, Chief Executive Officer at The Export and Investment Fund of Denmark.

The shipping industry accounts for around 3% of global greenhouse gas emissions and is considered a hard-to-abate sector. Therefore, there is a need for green fuels and new technologies to reach the targeted climate goals. The Blue World methanol fuel cells enable efficient conversion of methanol to electricity with a superior electrical efficiency of up to 65%. Furthermore, fuel cells provide the potential for internal waste heat utilisation to optimise the methanol-reforming process and for additional energy recovery that can be used onboard, improving the total system efficiency.

Blue World’s patent-pending system architecture enables a reduction in fuel consumption of 20-30% paving the way for a reduction in the green premium related to fuelling with e-fuels. The fuel cell system architecture provides an opportunity for 100% capture of the generated CO₂ with a fuel increase of only 2-3% enabling attractive recycling business models. With an industrial approach, Blue World Technologies has built a fuel cell factory in Aalborg, Denmark, ensuring in-house production of all the core fuel cell components alongside system development and manufacturing.

“Maersk has taken the lead on decarbonising the shipping industry showing courage and determination to make a difference. But most importantly, they act. We are therefore extremely proud to have them on board in this financing round. We are also very pleased that Maersk is joined by The Export and Investment Fund of Denmark, Cycle Group, and other new and existing shareholders in Blue World, and we are thrilled about their continuous endorsement of our company and the journey we are on,” says Anders Korsgaard CEO & Cofounder of Blue World Technologies

A.P. Moller – Maersk has set an ambition for its entire business including its fleet of around 700 container vessels to reach net zero emission in 2040. The company has recently received its first green methanol-enabled vessel “Laura Maersk” and has another 24 vessels capable of sailing on green methanol on order for delivery in the coming years.

On top of the venture investment in Blue World, Maersk has ordered a methanol fuel cell pilot system for auxiliary power developed by Blue World to be installed on one of the Maersk’s methanol-powered container ships on order. The system is subject to being class-approved by ABS.

“At Maersk we see methanol fuel cells as an interesting and promising technology. With well above 100 methanol enabled vessels on order across the industry, the demand for green fuel is rising. The prospect of fuel cell technology to significantly improve energy efficiency for these expensive green fuels could become an important component in closing the price gap to conventional bunker fuel and enable the green transition of shipping,” states Ole Graa Jakobsen, Vice President, Fleet Technology at A.P. Moller – Maersk

Being one of the early investors in Blue World Technologies, The Export and Investment Fund of Denmark is happy to welcome Maersk on board:

“The global green transformation of our society is an enormous task that requires more than just wind turbines. One next step is decarbonisation of the transport sector with its fuel-demanding cars, trucks, planes, ships etc. Some of this can be handled by electrification. But certain hard to abate sectors such as heavy road transport, aviation, and shipping require the development of sustainable fuels. Our task is to find the technologies of the future and help them getting quickly from the very early stages to scaling and making transformative technologies at industrial scale and thus also at a lower cost point than seen before. That´s why this makes much sense to EIFO,” says Peder Lundquist, Chief Executive Officer at The Export and Investment Fund of Denmark.

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Originally published on ArcticStartup : Original article

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