A data analytics startup is hoping to reduce all types of financial risk in maritime shipping.
Imagine a country 40 times bigger than the United States, but with no police force, surveillance cameras, or smartphones. This is the high seas – a vast area in which ships are largely on their own. Springwise has previously covered innovations to improve shipping efficiency. These have included the use of smart mapping and digital tools for cargo management. Now, Israeli maritime data and analytics firm Windward is developing technology to better analyse shipping data.
Windward was founded to aggregate information about activity at sea. The company initially developed MARINT, a product to track vessel traffic using commercial satellites. The analytical software was designed to find suspicious behaviour, such as smuggling or illegal fishing, and alert law enforcement and intelligence agencies. Over time, the company realised their AI software could also be used to identify previously invisible patterns created by ship movements, and assess what they mean.
While there are other companies that analyse maritime data, Windward focuses specifically on big data. According to CEO and co-founder Ami Daniel, “While some companies look at aspects of what Windward is doing, no one is taking all maritime data, 24/7, analysing it, vetting it, bringing cyber security algorithms to it and making sense of it across verticals.”
Recently, Windward raised USD 10.8 million in funding from Horizons Ventures, which joins USD 5 million raised in a previous funding round. The company plans to use this to scale up MARINT and bring FORESEA, a financial platform targeted at commodity traders, investors and analysts, to market. They are also applying their expertise to marine insurance, helping actuaries to build more accurate risk models. In the future, Windward hopes to be able to model all maritime risks.