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Innovation on the High Seas: A Glimpse into 9 CEE Maritime Startups

Port picture shot from above
Image credit: Canva

The maritime industry is a multi-layered business. Shipping drives the world’s economy, facilitating the transportation of approximately 90% of all goods across the globe by sea.

In line with other sectors, the global maritime industry has been undergoing a digital transformation in recent years, marked by significant technological advancements. The increasing need to efficiently manage complex supply chain operations drives the demand for maritime information systems. Therefore, integrating technologies such as AI, blockchain, IoT, and automation streamlines inventory management, ship tracking, and data tracking offer the potential for substantial gains in productivity, reducing time spent on shipping, receiving, tracking, and organizing order data.

In our nеck of thе woods, Greece stands out as the market leader. It’s quite expected, isn’t it? 2023 marks a significant success for the Greek AI startup DeepSea with its acquisition by Nabtesco, a Japan-based engineering giant. The deal was sealed to further aid Nabtesco’s goal development of autonomous vessels and other AI applications in its business sectors. 

Previously, we’ve told you about emerging companies in the marine industry among SEE. Now, we expand the coverage, curating a new list featuring some key startup players across different use cases. Dive deeper in the CEE maritime segment with the companies making waves of their own! 


9 Maritime Startups from CEE

Harbor Lab

Founding year: 2020

Use case: Port operations

Founder: Antonis Malaxianakis

About: Athens-based startup Harbor Lab provides software for ship owners, management companies, and charterers’ internal disbursements departments. It ensures a streamlined and accurate port cost validation process through technology and automation.

Its system aims to simplify the disbursements account procedures and identify discrepancies, reducing port call expenses by approximately 6% per port call, and administration costs by up to 75%.


Marine Fields

Founding year: 2017

Use case: Port operations

Founder: Socrates Theodossiou

About: Based in Cyprus, the startup aims to offer enhanced digital collaboration between shipping companies, ports and terminals. That includes customized market analysis with suggestions for improving the digital infrastructure, which is executed through its real-time connectivity tools.

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Nereus Digital Bunkers

Founding year: 2019

Use case: Bunker and lube oil

Founder: Nikolas Gkikas

About: Greek Nereus Digital Bunkers provides a maritime software and brokerage company. It is focusing on the marine fuel industry. The platform deploys AI, market analysis, historical prices and updates as well as real-time market data to provide transparency to the purchasers of marine fuels.



Founding year: 2022

Use case: Bunker and lube oil

Founder: Daniel Rose

About: Founded in Greece, Shipergy deploys its technology from smaller fleets to global operators. The startup uses real-time data, AI, and machine learning, aiming to deliver visibility into fuel quality, availability, and decarbonisation potential. 



Founding year: 2012

Use case: Data monitoring and analytics

Founder: Mehmet Onder

About: Istanbul-based startup Navatom is a ship management platform providing cloud-based software. Their goal is to enable access to real-time maritime data by locating, sorting and analyzing it. It operated as a web application, visible by all users.


Metis Cyberspace Tech

Founding year: 2016

Use case: Data monitoring and analytics

Founder: Mike Konstantinidis, Serafeim Katsikas

About: The Athens-based company specializes in the field of data acquisition, real-time performance monitoring and intelligent analytics. METIS, which according to Greek Mythology means wisdom, aims to set high expertise in information intelligence to strengthen the safety of maritime routes, minimize the impact on the environment and reduce the transport cost.



Founding year: 2018

Use case: Communication and connectivity

Founder: Peter Balchev, Dimitar Ivanov

About: The company, based in Varna, Bulgaria, is an intelligent port call management platform that aims to help port agents and their customers to gain control and efficiency in their port calls. One of their primary objectives is to provide the needed tools to streamline port call operations, while having visibility of the process.



Founding year: 2014

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Use case: Voyage optimizer

Founder: N/A

About: The Greek Oceanroute was established to provide weather routing services worldwide, ensuring the safety of crews, vessels, and cargo. The company’s primary objective is to enhance transit times across various passages to conserve fuel resources upon voyage completion. Through their Post Voyage Analysis, Oceanroute aims to ensure accurate reflections of agreements between vessel owners and charterers. 



Founding year: 2020

Use case: Crew management

Founder: Byron Antoniadis, Agapitos Diakogiannis

About: Greek Seafair is a tech startup helping shipping companies manage data and recruit seafarers. It provides a digital crewing platform that enables users to find marine vacancies. According to the company’s data, they have around 1.7M seafarers globally.

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Teodora Atanasova is a News Editor at The Recursive. She covers everything around funding rounds, exits, startups expanding to international markets, big tech opening R&D in CEE, meaningful for the ecosystem partnerships.