The nominees are:

Tor M. Østervold, ECOsubsea (Norway)
Based on his experience from working on board a commercial vessel and completing his master’s in international shipping in Plymouth, Østervold came up with an innovative idea: cleaning the hull without damaging paint and at the same time collecting debris, sparing the environment damage. Born into a family of fishermen, he is CEO of ECOsubsea, a company he founded in 2008 and whose partners include Wilh. Wilhelmsen ASA and Innovation Norway. Their technology, approved for use in five ports, increases ship energy efficiency and reduces operational costs, invasive species and emissions.



Rainer Sternfeld, Marinexplore (USA)
Sternfeld is the founder and CEO of Marinexplore, whose technology helps the offshore industry reduce risk and cut data processing time five-fold. He got his epiphany for Marinexplore while working on a profiling buoy at Flydog Design, an engineering design company he co-founded. Marinexplore’s open-source data platform is designed to share data and analysis of the ocean space without having to relocate the data. Prior to this, Sternfled led ABB to win and establish the world’s first nationwide, fast-charging infrastructure for electric cars, now being built in Estonia.



Styrk Bekkenes, Noreq AS (Norway)
Named “Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year” for western Norway in 2011, Bekkenes is now Managing Director of Noreq. Together with five former colleagues, Bekkenes started the long process of establishing a new company in the maritime industry. Founded in 2006, Noreq is now one of the key players in the lifesaving industry with nearly 130 employees in eight countries. Its clients include major shipyards, navies, and leading offshore and shipping companies. Bekkenes is known for his strong spirit of entrepreneurship and bold leadership.


Christoffer Thorsheim, WTL Logistics (United Arab Emirates)

Voted one of Norway’s top 100 young talented leaders in 2012 and 2011, Thorsheim is passionate about his work, both in and outside the workplace. He is the founder and Managing Director of WTL Logistics, an independent logistics and transport service provider. His accomplishments include establishing a land-bridge linking the port of Karachi to US and ISAF military bases in Afghanistan, allowing for the safe delivery of military and humanitarian cargo. Thorsheim also started YoungShip Dubai, which has gained traction in the Middle East due to his commitment, entrepreneurial spirit and proactive attitude.