Your first monthly maritime news for the year 2022 about the industry and the PortXL community.

VC theDOCK raises initial $10 million of targeted $30 million for maritime-tech fund

theDOCK, a maritime-tech venture capital fund based in Israel, has announced the initial closing of its second fund, raising about $10 million from a targeted $30 million. The fund will focus on early-stage startups developing technologies to help revolutionize ports, shipping, supply chain, and offshore sectors and targeting both Israeli and international companies. According to the firm, it hopes to hold a final closing of up to $30 million by the end of the year.

Alphaliner confirms MSC has toppled Maersk at the top of the box rankings

It’s been a long time coming but finally Mediterranean Shipping Co (MSC) was crowned by Alphaliner as the world’s largest liner by operated container vessel capacity, surpassing 2M partner Maersk, which had been at the top of the rankings for more than a quarter of a century. Alphaliner, part of AXSMarine, tracks the capacities of the world’s top 100 liners, making the data free to view. It’s top 100 liners page has been eagerly watched in recent months as MSC has edged ever closer to overtaking its Danish rival.

HelioRec explores linking floating solar with AI

French/Russian start-up HelioRec has teamed up with information technology company Digital Dood to explore linking floating solar technology with artificial intelligence (AI) to address various blue economy challenges.

‘Size isn’t an objective for us’: MSC’s Soren Toft

Soren Toft, CEO of Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC), has passed comment on one of this month’s biggest shipping stories – his company surpassing his old employers, Maersk, at the top of the liner rankings. Toft, who joined MSC 13 months ago, having previously been COO at 2M partner Maersk, has presided over a swift rise of the Swiss line, which, with the purchase of the the 4,992 teu Mexico, topped the liner rankings compiled by Alphaliner.

Van Oord partners with two PortXL start-ups

Van Oord has signed partnership agreements with LexX Technologies and Heliorec, two start-ups scouted through the innovation platform PortXL. The signing ceremony took place during the shakedown event on 2 December marking the end of this year’s PortXL programme. Van Oord is one of the founders of PortXL and a main sponsor of the PortXL programme for the sixth year in a row. The port and maritime accelerator platform is one of the ways that Van Oord encourages innovation in the global maritime industry. This year, the company focused on two innovation themes: sustainability and digitalisation.

OEEC startup floor bursting with innovation and fresh ideas

Offshore Energy Exhibition and Conference (OEEC) has once again organized the Startup Zone for early-stage companies to showcase their innovative solutions and potentially attract investors and business partners. In an interview segment with Coco Kossmann, we hear from two promising startups – Seaqualize and Hefring Marine.

Suez Canal expansion to be completed by July next year

The Suez Canal expansion project will be completed by July 2023 according to the chairman of the Suez Canal Authority (SCA). The SCA announced accelerated plans to extend a second channel of the canal and to enlarge an existing channel after the Ever Given containership ran aground and blocked the waterway for six days last year. The southernmost 30 km of the canal, where the Ever Given became grounded, is set to be widened 40 m eastward and deepened to 22 m.