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A view from the CEO – 2021 a year in review

As 2021 draws to a close, I look back with great pride at ZeroNorth’s achievements, the progress we’ve made, and the change we’ve been able to unlock for our customers in the last twelve months. With the support of a talented, passionate team and engaged customers and partners, together we’re fulfilling ZeroNorth’s mission of leading the green transition of global trade.

The growing demand for the ZeroNorth Platform reflects the growing recognition of the central role that data-driven voyage optimisation will play in decarbonising shipping. This hunger in the market and the overall atmosphere of change I feel fills me with hope for shipping’s future transition to zero emissions. 

Of course, the progress we have made would not be possible without the support of our incredible partners. Since our founding, we’ve always said that collaboration is central to creating impactful change. To that end, I want to recap some of the exciting partnerships we have embarked on in 2021. 

We started the year the right way, because in January we announced our new strategic partnership with leading global satellite and data company Spire Maritime. This partnership further powered up the ZeroNorth Platform with Spire’s world leading maritime AIS and weather data.

More partnerships followed across the rest of the year. We’ve teamed up with the Baltic Exchange, Monjasa and Chartworld to name a few, all with a view to improving the outputs and recommendations of our platform using the industry’s very best market data. By utilising the complimentary skills and expertise of data companies and software developers, alongside experts who deal with data specific to the maritime domain, we believe that we will be able to create one of the industry’s most comprehensive data ecosystems.

It was this logic that also led to us found the Industry Decarbonisation Working Group for Immediate Action.Over the past year, representatives from 14 organisations, including Cargill, UltraBulk, Western Bulk, Maersk Tankers, Lloyds Register, Norden, EuroNav, Siglar Carbon and Q88 have met across several workshops to address shipping’s decarbonisation challenges and find working solutions.

The first challenge the working group tackled was forging a new industry-wide standard to measure the accuracy of vessel fuel consumption models. Now, the group is addressing vessel data quality, as there is neither a common standard for vessel-reported data, nor an aligned approach for how to validate quality data in the industry. 

All of the working group’s efforts are aligned around solving genuine barriers to decarbonisation, and doing that multilaterally with wide buy-in and participation from key market leaders. This requires us to work with partners and competitors alike, but we strongly believe that this approach is the right one if we are to generate real change. 

Meanwhile, in another nod to the importance of industry wide collaboration, we were proud to show our support for accelerated decarbonisation by joining the Global Maritime Forum’s Getting to Zero Coalition. We’re excited to be continue working as part of the coalition and help foster a more sustainable shipping industry.

Speaking on behalf of the team, one of our greatest milestones of 2021 included our acquisition of industry leading vessel performance company Propulsion Dynamics, which has brought significant knowledge to our data platform from the more than 25,000 historical and current vessel fuel consumption models. Meanwhile, although I cannot yet disclose the details, we have another exciting announcement coming in early 2022 – watch this space! 

2021 also saw ZeroNorth become a truly global company. This year, we have opened three new offices in Athens, Varna, and Mumbai, in addition to our HQ in Copenhagen. Our Greek office gives us roots in one of shipping’s most important hubs. Meanwhile, our new voyage and vessel optimisation consultancy offices in Varna and Mumbai means we’re able to arm our users with the industry expertise they need to support vessel optimisation decisions.

In other news, we were pleased to be awarded the ‘Best Emerging Maritime Tech Company’ award at the Scandinavian Business Awards in June.

Soon after, on the product development front, we launched our integrated weather routing solution, which means that every route created in Optimise automatically considers weather factors for safety and commercial upside, and transparently calculates CO2 and USD impact.

In addition to our integrated weather routing functionality and as an agile maritime technology company, we ended 2021 by launching a Carbon Intensity Indicator (CII) analysis and optimisation solution within the ZeroNorth Platform. The integrated solution will support owners and operators in sustaining or increasing their fleet’s CII ratings by providing them with the insights they need to analyse, forecast, and proactively improve CII performance.

As a purpose driven company, with creative, innovative, individuals driven by a shared vision to make global trade green, we look forward to an exciting new year. Together, we will strive everyday to lead the green transition of shipping by driving immediate emission reduction through connected optimisation across the value chain.   

To our customers, partners, and employees, I would like to extend the very biggest thank you for your support and collaboration in 2021. We look forward to working with you and continuing to support our industry’s critical journey to a profitable decarbonisation in 2022.