The ASPBAN consortium definition was based on the general concept of the project to implement a representative and diverse open innovation, acceleration and investment ecosystem with the participation of Portugal, Spain, France, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway and the United States.


Beta-i (coordinator) was officially awarded as one of the leading institutions in the European startup ecosystem. Beta-i has been working on behalf of the private equity expansion in Portugal. Over the years, Beta-i has been building a community and established a great network of business partners. Beta-i is now leveraging its expertise to create a new phase with clients over 20 countries fostering collaboration between startups, corporate companies, and government institutions through their Open Innovation programs, Acceleration projects and Pilot Development plans. Beta-i has clients and projects in a diverse array of sectors, such as Energy, Tourism, Smart Cities, Mobility, Financial Services, Health and Blue Economy where, together with the Portuguese Ministry of the Sea, they created in 2019 the Bluetech Accelerator, an Open Innovation Program with a 1st edition dedicated to bringing innovation to the Ports & Shipping industry. Beta-i will be in charge of overall project coordination and dissemination with a strong involvement in WP5 and WP6.


Irish Maritime Development Office (IMDO) is the government agency responsible for providing policy analysis and advice on the Ports and Maritime sector to the Department of Transport in Ireland. IMDO undertakes economic analysis on the maritime sector, socio-economic analysis of the ocean economy and it is currently engaged in research on port performance metrics, working with the Irish ports on the TEN-T core network corridor as well as its comprehensive ports. The networks and industrial links that the IMDO has established in Ireland and internationally, along with experience from collaboration with other agencies in a whole of enterprise approach to doubling the size of Ireland’s ocean economy, will provide valuable knowledge and expertise to the development of the blue accelerator network. The IMDO’s capabilities and experience will be focused on leading WP2 and the dissemination activities in WP8. The role of the IMDO as a national promotion centre will enhance the exploitation and dissemination activities from ASPBAN project. The goals to increase the level of startups and scale ups for the Blue Economy, through a new smart ports blue accelerator network, are perfectly aligned to the IMDO’s mandate and its role in the development of Ireland’s Ocean Economy.


Kaleido Tech: Kaleido is a global logistics operator with over 40 years of history. Although today it offers services at all stages and modes of transport in the logistics chain, the origins of the group, as well as the main lines of business, are linked to maritime transport and port operations. The logistics services and activity sectors of the group are ocean and air freight, ports services & agencies, road transport, customs, wind cargo, project cargo, natural resources, logistics centres, freight forwarding. The two pillars of Kaleido’s growth in recent years have been internationalization and innovation. Kaleido has an international and powerful Open Innovation Ecosystem that continues to grow with a team that brings together the experience and dynamism necessary to successfully manage this interaction between corporations and startups and, finally, a proven and very practical methodology, aimed at converting this interaction into business. Kaleido has shown itself to be an example of innovation in the operation of both its own and third-party accelerators, with international recognition, such as Logistics Tech (5 editions), Fishing Tech (4 editions), Habitat Tech (2 editions) and Aquaculture Tech (1 edition). Due to their experience and reach, Kaleido will be leading WP3.


NOAH Blue Consortium is driving a holistic approach to structure the Global regenerative Blue Growth, aiming to bring innovative solutions for coastal regions and cities using ocean’s resources in a regenerative way, respecting the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and empowering regional circular economies. To structure such a global blue revolution, NOAH is deploying four pillars: 1) Networking Platform – Blue International Federation (BIF); 2) Financial Platform – NOAH Blue Economy Blended Investment Platform (BEBIP); 3) Physical Platforms – NOAH’s Arks Series: Regional Floating Blue headquarters infrastructures hubs in Ports, meeting points of the Blue value chain to physically connect the Global BEBIP funds to regional Blue accelerators; 4) Digital Platform – NOAH Blue Digital Platform (Blue Digital). NOAH will be actively participating in WP4.


Eurotran is a public affairs agency based in Strasbourg and Brussels, specialised in EU public affairs and EU funding. Eurotran’s main goal is to promote their clients’ interest in the EU legislative process. With its clients, Eurotran is also building long-term relationships based on attention, tailor-made advice and trust: it provides clients with all the tools to promote their positions towards the European institutions, such as monitoring and intelligence, lobbying, strategy, training and EU funding. Eurotran will be actively participating and leading WP4.


Global Accelerator Network (GAN) is a highly-curated community of the world’s top startup accelerators, investors and corporate partners. Launched to align the accelerator industry around globally accepted best practices and to create a standardized model for their success. GAN Accelerators have launched more than 13,000 startups in the last decade, and their network data shows that 86% are still in business today. GAN Accelerators provide strategic support, human and financial capital, and unparalleled connections to startup founders at the earliest stages of their companies, to ensure they have the human and financial capital they need to build powerful businesses and make meaningful impact. GAN’s role within ASPBAN ensures participating members can create and sustain the most effective support for entrepreneurs developing technologies in the climate, clean energy, marine, and related spaces. When the startup companies led by these entrepreneurs have the support they need, the collaboration will better advance the Sustainable Development Goals in focus, create net new jobs, and foster an innovation ecosystem that sustains a blue economy in line with the European Green Deal. More specifically, GAN provides accelerator members with the following support: 1) A hub of the world’s top accelerators and peers working in similar collaboratives, with whom they can exchange best practices, data for benchmarking, playbooks, templates, and knowledge for operating exceptional accelerator programs; 2) Connections to corporate partners, investors, and mentors who belong to GAN’s global community and are focused on Blue Economy topics; 3) Promotion of the participants’ programs through GAN’s social media and email platform, in order to attract novel technologies and talent to help them innovate. GAN will provide an invaluable support in the implementation of tasks under WP5 and WP8.


GCE Ocean Technology (GCE OT) is an industry driven cluster initiative for strengthening and increasing internationalisation of business, research and education in the ocean industries. The cluster has as main objective to increase the cluster’s competitiveness and global market share and take a leading position in sustainable utilisation of ocean resources. GCE OT’s combination of specialised service providers, R&D environments and development agencies makes the cluster an optimal innovative ecosystem and a global knowledge hub. The cluster develops and supplies innovative ocean technology solutions for a wide range of applications including subsea oil and gas production, marine renewable energy production (offshore wind, wave and tidal), marine food production and exploration of marine mineral resources. The cluster’s resource base consists of industry companies, R&D and higher education institutions, joint innovation support resources and joint test facilities and R&D infrastructure. The close proximity between businesses, R&D environments and support agencies enables good mobility, communication and knowledge sharing. GCE OT will be leading WP5.


PortXL was founded in 2015 in Rotterdam with the vision of cultivating a spirit of innovation within the global maritime and port industry. This is why PortXL is an ecosystem of startups, scaleups, corporate partners and mentors – all change makers, creative thinkers and problem solvers who work collaboratively to disrupt the status quo. PortXL is a typical startup accelerator with experience running programs in Rotterdam, Singapore and Antwerp. It is PortXL’s mission to innovate ports for sustainable growth. Being part of ASPBAN consortium overlaps with PortXL’s mission and international growth ambition and will lead to more cooperation between ports, accelerators and other partners in European maritime ecosystem. PortXL will be leading WP6.


Fórum Oceano Association of Maritime Economy is a private non-profit corporate body created in 2009 and since then formally recognised by the Portuguese Government as the Nacional Maritime Cluster. With 110 members representing all sectors of the blue economy, among them companies and business associations, RTD centres, higher education institutions, local authorities and other associative organisations, the cluster strengthens the dynamics of strategic cooperation between the members and other relevant stakeholders, whilst promoting the competitiveness of the main value chains that use the sea and marine resources as the central elements of its activity. As final mission, the Cluster wants to contribute, in a sustainable way, to economic growth and the growth of exports and employment and to increase the maritime economy’s importance to the national economy. Fórum Oceano will be leading the business plan tasks, under WP7, and the management of the Strategic Partners Network.


World Ocean Council (WOC) is the Global Blue Economy Business and Investment Organization. WOC has established the international, cross-sectoral industry leadership alliance on “Corporate Ocean Responsibility”, to achieve the business benefits of cross-sectoral leadership, collaboration and action on sustainable development. WOC brings together leadership companies from ports, shipping, fishing, aquaculture, cruise tourism, oil and gas, offshore renewable energy, marine mining, submarine cables, maritime legal, investment and a range of other sectors. In addition to the 75+ WOC Members from the diverse Ocean Business Community, the WOC Network includes 35,000+ ocean industry stakeholders around the world. WOC is recognised or accredited by numerous U.N. agencies and other international organizations as the credible, global leadership body on ocean business and sustainability. WOC will be actively involved in the business plan development, under WP7, but also plays a role in other work packages.


The Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR) represents 150 maritime regions in 24 European Union countries and beyond. It is both a think tank and an interest group for regional and local governments. Since its inception in 1973, the CPMR has been acting to promote a more balanced development of the European territory. Most of its work addresses EU policies with a strong territorial impact (energy transition and climate change, cohesion policy, accessibility & transport). The CPMR is structured around a core policy secretariat and six Geographical Commissions covering the main sea basins of Europe: Atlantic Arc, Balkans and Black Sea, Baltic Sea, Mediterranean, North Sea, and one for Islands. The Geographical Commissions provide active forums in which CPMR members address European issues and share best practice on areas of common interest, including the development of the blue economy, decarbonisation of regional economies, energy transition, and climate change. They form the backbone of the CPMR, contributing to its political deliberations and technical notes. The CPMR has over forty years’ experience influencing European policy development, and in implementing European projects. The CPMR and its AAC have been involved in a range of EU projects as full partner for more than 10 years, mostly in activities related to communication and dissemination of results and key messages to its extended network. The CPMR plays a strong role in transferring and capitalisation activities, advocating the integration of best practice, innovative solutions, and positive societal change in policies with high territorial impact, in the field of maritime issues, territorial cooperation, transport/accessibility, and other global issues, such as climate change. With member regions from across the whole of the EU and outside the EU, CPMR provide great opportunities for dissemination and transfer of knowledge and experience. This will be the main responsibility under ASPBAN, leading WP8. CPMR brings in the participation of not just one or two, but over 150 public authorities, who are best placed to structure local and regional value chains and ensure the right conditions are in place to support project aims and long-term sustainability of project outcomes.


The Canary Islands Maritime Cluster (CMC) is a non-profit business association of the regional marine-maritime sector of the Canary Islands. Its main objective is to promote the development and international competitiveness of the Canary Islands maritime sector through the integration, creation, strengthening and sustainability of companies and agents that are within the value chain of the maritime sector, promoting their international presence and increase its technological and innovative level. CMC have around 95 members, divided into: public administrations, R&D&I agents, business associations, consultants, banks, university, training centres and companies. CMC’s business areas integrate agents of the marinemaritime value chain such as: ship repair, maritime transport, port services, marine biotechnology, recreational and sports boating, fishing and aquaculture, tourism, marine renewable energies and auxiliary maritime services. CMC will be in charge of dissemination and communication under WP8.


Magellan is a non-profit private law association for the representation of Portuguese interests abroad. Magellan is engaged in the promotion and advocacy of entities abroad, namely near the European Union institutions, providing advice to companies, business associations and other entities, aiming to assist them in maintaining a strong presence within the European Union. Aware that much of the legislation governing the Portuguese and European business structure originates within the European Union, from Brussels Magellan cultivates a close contact with the most relevant actors within the European institutions and other correlated entities. The main lines of action include the identification of opportunities, support for the preparation of applications, management and coordination of proposals and projects retained for funding, as well as representation and policy advocacy with European institutions. In addition to supporting other entities applications, Magellan has a broad experience participating either as beneficiary or as subcontractor in large European consortia since 2014. Magellan is also a member of the WATERBORNE Technology Platform, which is an initiative that promotes the establishment of a continuous dialogue between all stakeholders in the waterborne transport sector and in other waterborne-related sectors on R&D. The chief areas of Magellan’s work and specialisation are Transport, Environment and Circular Economy, which translate into large involvement in the deployment of a series of activities and projects in their realm: advocacy, consultancy, project management, access to funds and event organisation. Magellan will be co-leading WP1, together with Beta-i.

This Project has received funding from the European Union under grant agreement No.: EMFF-APC-2020-AspBAN-101033749.