Chosen for their innovative ocean technologies and export potential, 17 small U.S. companies from nine states have been selected to participate in the 2017 cohort of the first U.S. Maritime Technology Export Initiative.
The selected companies each develop, manufacture or sell a variety of maritime or ocean technologies or services in aerial drones, maritime robotics, ocean observation, renewable energy, underwater sensors, vessel emissions control or vessel traffic management, and through the program will seek to create partnerships with buyers and distributors in foreign markets.
The following companies, selected from a group of 35 applicants from across the country, will participate in activities through 2017 intended to increase U.S. exports and create jobs.
- AEG’s Advanced Maritime Emissions Control System (AMECS)
- Aquabotix Technology Corporation, Inc.
- Assure Controls
- BioLargo Maritime Solutions Inc.
- Blue Robotics Inc.
- Del Mar Oceanographic
- Exocetus Autonomous Systems
- GreenWave Instruments
- Marine Advanced Research Inc.
- Pioneer Valley Renewables
- Planck Aerosystems
- Sunburst Sensors
- WearWare Inc.
The U.S. Maritime Technology Export Initiative is a collaboration between The Maritime Alliance (TMA) and the International Trade Administration (ITA), part of the U.S. Department of Commerce. A team of more than 50 people in U.S. federal government agencies stationed around the world and the nonprofit industry association are collaborating on this first-ever initiative.
TMA Executive Director Greg Murphy said, “The 17 companies that were selected to join the first cohort of the U.S. Maritime Technology Export Initiative represent the type of fast-growing small businesses in the Blue Economy that create good-paying Blue Jobs in the United States, and we're looking forward to helping them grow their business through increased exports and partnerships abroad.”
Each participating company is provided a complimentary one-year membership with The Maritime Alliance (if not already a member) and the opportunity to participate in BlueTech Week held November 6-10, 2017 in San Diego, including the annual BlueTech PitchFest.
The ability to enter foreign markets is buoyed by the ITA and the U.S. Commercial Service, which has regional offices around the world to help U.S. businesses. The timing of this initiative also coincides closely with the launch of the international BlueTech Cluster Alliance (BTCA), announced by TMA on January 11, 2017 as an alliance of the eight leading BlueTech clusters from seven countries. “The BlueTech Cluster Alliance will promote BlueTech cluster outreach and our success will depend on cluster-cluster collaboration that develops," said TMA President Michael Jones.
“This is an amazing opportunity for us,” said Joe Turner, a co-founder of Exocetus Autonomous Systems, a Connecticut-based supplier of autonomous underwater vehicles. “This program will introduce us to overseas markets, hopefully driving sales and exports and jumpstarting our business. Without this program, we’d likely take another two years to begin exporting.”
Most of the selected companies will be exhibit at Oceanology International North America (OINA), February 14-16, 2017 at the San Diego Convention Center, which is an extension of the ocean science and technology conference and trade show in London every even year.
In addition, select U.S. companies will travel to Europe in April to exhibit at the Ocean Business trade show in Southampton, U.K., followed by a trade mission to the port cities of Copenhagen, Hamburg and Rotterdam organized by The Maritime Alliance.
“Blue Robotics already has a strong customer-base in Europe as well as several European distributors. We hope to strengthen those relationships, forge new relationships and demonstrate our commitment to serve customers outside of the U.S.,” said Rustom Jehangir, founder of Blue Robotics, a California based marine robotics company. “Blue Robotics is thrilled to be selected for the U.S. Maritime Technology Export Initiative and will attend and exhibit at Ocean Business 2017 in Southampton, U.K., April 4-6.”