Author: Stephen Timm
Founded by Richard Hardiman, Ranmarine Technology uses WasteShark — 24-hour on-the-water drones. The solar-powered drones collect detritus, marine waste and chemical substances from ports and canals.
Hardiman told Ventureburn that the company has only just launched commercially this month. However, it already has a pilot project lined up in South Africa with Transnet and the Port of Durban for later this year to test WasteShark in SA waters.
Founded in 2015 in South Africa, the company was later re-incorporated in the Netherlands at the start of last year as RanMarine Technology BV.
Hardiman is based in Rotterdam. He moved there after being selected for PortXL Rotterdam’s maritime accelerator (portxl.org) in February last year. The startup was one of 12 companies selected from 1000 startups worldwide.
In July last year the startup began a pilot with the Port of Rotterdam to test both the use of autonomous surface vessels in their waters and how the product actually works in “high trafficked waters”. The pilot was successfully completed last month.
“We are now producing commercially with customers initially based in Holland, Sweden, the UAE and Singapore at this stage,” he added.
The startup’s customers include port authorities, municipalities, and in-land water authorities, through to private waste management companies as well as hotels (with large water areas), golf club and private yacht marinas.
“Most people think of drones as aerial but to us, it is anything that can be remotely controlled. Our drones also send back environmental data from the water at the same time to give customers workable reports to work from (sic) when determining what is in the water area they control.”
In February, the company took on investors as well.
“We are currently in talks with a number of distributors worldwide to supply product,” he said. He didn’t want to disclose any revenue or investment figures, adding only that the February investment was a “minority stake” investment in the firm.
Article link: http://ventureburn.com/2017/07/drone-startups-south-africa/