X Shore Eelex 8000
Electric Boat Startup Raises $ 18 Million to Catch Up on Orders
The auto industry is already shifting to go electric, and a Swedish startup is convinced ships are next.
Stockholm-based X Shore raised 15 million euros ($ 18 million) from investors to increase production of its battery-powered pleasure boat and tap into the growing market for eco-friendly luxury boardwalks.
The company’s Eelex 8000, a 26-foot vessel powered by a 120-kilowatt-hour battery, went on sale in the US last month, but X Shore is struggling to fulfill balloon orders from his little factory in Stockholm. The startup plans to use the funds to open a second site and increase production to about 400 ships a year.
What is happening now in the navigation market is what has already started in the automotive industry. There is more demand than can be supplied.
While the recreational electric craft market remains small, some 15,000 boats were sold last year, it is expected to grow to 70,000 shipments and a total size of $ 1.4 billion by the end of this decade.
Growth is “slow and steady” and is driven primarily by technological improvements and environmental enthusiasts.
Cities like Amsterdam and Venice have moved to ban or limit the use of gas and diesel boats. Norway, a world leader in the adoption of electric cars, reaffirmed plans in February to ban emissions from ships in certain fjords by 2026.
It is difficult to say how big this market will be as it is growing so fast.
While most recreational electric boats are small and low on power, the company targets buyers who are willing to pay for boats with similar performance to fossil fuel powered models.
The Eelex 8000, the company’s only product to date, which reaches a top speed of 35 knots, with a price starting at around 250,000 euros.
Boats are often the most expensive non-essential purchase people make.