Meyer Turku has been selected to participate in Business Finland’s financing program for locomotive companies and ecosystems, which will help companies to increase their research, development and innovation investments (RDI) in Finland. Meyer’s NEcOLEAP program develops carbon-neutral and sustainable technological solutions for cruise ships through an extensive cooperation network. The goal is to get a billion-order vessel order for Turku shipyard.
Access to Business Finland’s RDI funding was significant and also vital for Meyer Turku, as only innovative development work and continuous renewal can guarantee the yard’s competitiveness in the intensifying competition of the maritime industry. Receiving an order for a climate-neutral cruise ship in Turku would bring the shipyard and partner network about 12,000 person-years, corresponding to about 9,500 jobs. The impact of the order on Meyer’s net sales is approximately EUR 1 billion and will have a direct impact on Finnish exports.
– With the financing of the EU Recovery Instrument, locomotive companies can make significant development openings in Finland in accordance with the green transition. These openings have a major impact on the well-being of Finns in terms of employment and business. The Meyer Turku locomotive project strengthens the know-how and network of the Finnish maritime cluster as well as global competitiveness. We see the financing of locomotive companies as a viable way to build Finland’s future. Welcome to locomotive cooperation, says Karin Wikman, Business Finland’s leading expert.
NEcOLEAP brings together the factors of the future
In the NEcOLEAP program, we research and develop carbon-neutral and sustainable solutions for cruise ships and their construction together with the Finnish shipbuilding ecosystem. The research and development topics focus on four areas, namely the cruise ship itself, the shipyard’s operations, ie shipbuilding, and the introduction of smart technologies and the open-minded professionals of the future. In the partnership network, we create an opportunity for thousands of Finnish experts to innovate and do something completely new, says Ilkka Rytkölä, Program Director at Meyer Turku.
Tapani Pulli, Executive Vice President of Meyer Turku, states that the main goal of the NEcOLEAP program is to accelerate the yard’s business to adapt to the green transition and meet the requirements of climate change together with ecosystem partners.
It also contributes to Business Finland’s goal of raising the share of two and a half percent of product development to 4 percent of GDP, says Pulli.
EUR 100 million development program
Meyer Turku’s goal is to develop a climate-neutral cruise ship concept by 2025. The goal is also for shipbuilding to be CO2-neutral at the yard by 2030.
NEcOLEAP’s cost estimate is approximately EUR 100 million, of which Business Finland’s financial contribution to Meyer is EUR 20 million and Meyer Turku’s own contribution is EUR 30 million. Business Finland has also set aside EUR 50 million for companies, research institutes and universities involved in the ecosystem.
Many parties have already expressed an interest in joining the program. NEcOLEAP’s areas are well suited to projects at universities and research institutes. The research work and the results of the program will also provide guidelines for future research and product development. In addition to large companies, a large number of SMEs and startups are expected to participate in the program.
With the NEcOLEAP research and development program, we can also meet our customers’ strategic responsibility goals, says Pulli.
Extensive cooperation network and ecosystem
The construction of a climate-neutral cruise ship requires extensive cooperation between companies and universities and research institutes, and a new way of operating. In the NEcOLEAP program, we are exploring the possibility of introducing even more responsible technologies that will enable us to develop energy and resource efficiency, automation, robotics and cyber security in ships and shipbuilding, among other things, says Pulli.
Meyer Turku already has a good partnership network, but now the cooperation network can be expanded to include completely new development areas that emphasize not only environmentally friendly energy solutions but also the potential of the circular economy and the resource efficiency of materials. The goal is to find the most inventive solutions and innovative technologies. The Meyer Turku cooperation network now includes about 1,350 partners, and the project is expected to grow to 1,500 partners.
Only in this way can we stand out in the intensifying competition of the maritime industry and maintain our leading position in the global market, concludes Pulli.
Meyer Turku Oy specializes in the construction of very demanding, advanced, innovative, environmentally friendly and energy-efficient cruise ships, car ferries and special vessels. The operations are based on high-quality and networked research and development-oriented design. The yard’s largest customers are Royal Caribbean International, Carnival Cruise Lines, TUI Cruises and Costa Crociere. Meyer Turku’s share of the global cruise construction market is about 15 percent. The customer base is based on Meyer Turku’s ability to create new solutions for the industry at a competitive price and on the promised delivery schedule.
Reference: Meyer Turku