NAVTOR accelerates IoT and AI development with Masterloop acquisition

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NAVTOR has taken another step forward on its ambitious growth path with the acquisition of specialist software development company Masterloop.

With a proven track record within IoT (Internet of Things), AI and web solutions, Masterloop’s arrival boosts NAVTOR’s innovation and development team, already strengthened by the acquisition of Voyager Worldwide in December. The Norwegian-headquartered business will now focus resources on the continued push for data-driven efficiency, performance and decarbonisation for customers, integrating further solutions into its connected digital ecosystem.

“Masterloop provides another piece of the digital puzzle as we continue our mission to make life easier, safer and more profitable for shipping companies worldwide,” comments Tor Svanes (pictured), NAVTOR Founder and CEO. “The team’s industrial IoT strength and maritime understanding, highlighted by their Bluekey vessel efficiency application, will feed into our drive to enhance our portfolio with intelligent, data-based, AI solutions that simplify the increasingly complex operational reality faced by today’s maritime businesses.

“Masterloop brings something new to the table, with fresh perspectives and broad experience gained from outside of shipping too. We believe they can help accelerate our innovation, as we push to deliver transformational technology for an evolving industry. It’s great to have them on board.”

NAVTOR is the world leader in e-Navigation and performance solutions, with products and services aboard over 18,000 vessels in the world fleet. Masterloop, meanwhile, has made a name for itself with a proprietary IoT platform, Bluekey and a smart bike-sharing application CityBike Cloud. Its client history includes names such as Easee, Zaptec, Kolumbus and Kverneland Group.

Jan Helge Skailand, Masterloop’s Founder and CEO, has a long history of collaboration with NAVTOR. He was originally one of the founding team in 2011, taking the role of CTO, before leaving to form Masterloop in 2013. The two companies have collaborated on numerous projects since that point.

“In many ways this feels like ‘coming home’,” says Skailand. “I know NAVTOR very well and the two companies share the same values, innovation culture, and commitment to developing new solutions that unlock powerful benefits for users. However, we also have a deep-dive domain specialization within IoT and have gained experience from working alongside a unique mix of customers. So, I think we have something to offer a team that is already at the vanguard of maritime technology. I can’t wait to see what comes of this.”

Masterloop’s team of ten, based in Norway and Sri Lanka, will now join NAVTOR’s global network of approximately 400 specialists. A key task will see them feeding competence into the Green AI for Sustainable Shipping (GASS) project, which is now tailoring digital twin and AI-based tech to introduce ‘dynamic voyage optimisation’ for vessels, aiming to cut emissions by up to 20%.

“We want to lead from the front and help change the industry with smart technology,” comments NAVTOR CTO Anders Holme. “Optimising performance and energy efficiency is one of our main focuses, helping our customers comply with stricter regulations, dramatically reduce fuel costs, and, of course, work towards ambitious decarbonisation goals.

“We have a strong sense of purpose and an important role to play. It’s great to see a talented team like Masterloop buying into that, enhancing our capacity as we seek to ‘make a real difference’ for the industry we serve.”

NAVTOR offers a comprehensive range of integrated smart shipping solutions, including advanced planning platform NavStation, fleet performance software NavFleet, and unique digital logbooks, amongst other products and services. To discover more please see www.navtor.com

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