Update on electric hydrojet motor crowdfunding. The fund has closed with 435 participants investing €2.918.700 – almost 10 time (971%) over budget. Congratulations!
The DeepSpeed motor first came to public attention at the 2019 Genoa Boat Show when crowds were intrigued by the look of their Number 10 prototype. Traditional hydrojets are placed inside the boat, but the DeepSpeed is an outboard.
The concept is based on the jet turbines that propel airplanes, and the idea came to founder William Gobbo in 2007 when he was replacing a V8 fossil fuel motor on his boat and thought there must be a better, cleaner solution for getting a boat through water. Some airplanes have propellers, some have jets, he reasoned. Why not an electric jet engine for a boat?
He gathered a small team of talented and enthusiastic experts from a variety of fields to research and develop the idea, and in 2017 took his findings to Professor Ernesto Benini of the University of Padua. Benini, a leading international expert on fluid dynamics experts applied to aeronautical propulsion. When the expert became so excited he decided to come onboard as an advisor, Gobbo knew he had something.
Patents granted for electric hydrojet motor
The DeepSpeed propulsion system went on to achieve the “Seal of Excellence” certification from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 department, which is only given to 3 out of 1,000 applicants. The technology was also recognized with the Gianneschi Innovation Prize from NAVIGO, the largest network of nautical companies in Italy.
All of this helped lead to investments of almost € 1.2M from various Italian and European science, technology and startup funds, augmented by a successful crowdfunding of €450K. In the past year, the company was granted a European patent, increased its capitalization to € 13.5M and recently received another patent in Australian.
Crowdfunding part of larger Series ‘A’ fundraising
Now DeepSpeed is ready for the next step in bringing its electric hydrojet motor to market and is conducting a Series A fundraising with a goal of € 7M in total. In preparation, the company has been transitioned to an SpA, which is a type of corporation in Italy similar to an S.A. or public limited company in other countries.
Founder Gobbo has taken a step back from the position of sole administrator and is one of the Directors on the new company’s Board. On the operations end, Sealence – the official name of the SpA – has brought on 9 new engineering and development staff who will be under the guidance of new Chief Technical Officer Marco Cassinelli. Cassinelli was most recently with MV Agusta high performance motorcycles.
For the equity fundraising round the company is in discussions with some Italian and foreign funds, and smaller public investors coming on through its CrowdFundMe campaign will participate in the round at the same evaluation as those larger entities.
The campaign runs until December 22 and the proceeds will be used to complete the development of the electric hydrojet motors and have full production, marketing and sales in place for the beginning of 2022.
The CrowdFundMe page notes that DeepSpeed/Sealence has partnerships with Amer-Yachts and Scanner Marine, who announced in April that they were working to have the DeepSpeed electric hydrojet motors on their Envy 710 RIB.
Founder Gobbo said: “We are still at the beginning of our journey. We will make other important steps forward with the proceeds from this investment round, and detail the full expansion strategy for the coming years.”
If you would like to get full information on the campaign, visit the »» DeepSpeed/Sealence CrowdFundMe Page.
DeepSpeed joins other e-boat investment campaigns
This has been quite the week for investments in electric boats and boating. On November 27 Canadian electric boat company Vision Marine Technologies raised more than $US 27 million in their IPO on NASDAQ, and was invited to ring the virtual NASDAQ Closing Bell today (Dec 2) to celebrate their listing.
Crowdfunding has also been a good source of investment for electric boat and electric motor companies. Here is a quick summary:
The Finnish company, one of the pioneers and great innovators of electric boat motors, used the Invesdor crowdfunding platform to blow past its original €600k target to raise €2M in May of 2019. Then this past September another equity crowdfunding was well above target on its opening day and ended up closing with investments of € 2.25M.
Sweden’s GreenStar Marine, another motor company that focuses largely on the sailing market, went over its target by 230% with 314 investors contributing €480k for 4.66% of the company’s shares.
The Swedish electric boat company is another that participated in the crowdfunding market, raising €1.5M in October of 2019. That was followed by a private investment of €5M (US$ 5.7M) from a group led by veterinary hospital executive Peter Dahlberg.