Norsepower was founded in late 2012 with a mission to reduce the environmental impact of shipping through its Rotor Sail Solution technology.
The concept of the Flettner rotor was first devised by Finnish inventor and architect Sigurd Savonius in the 1920s, concurrently with German engineer Anton Flettner. The first Atlantic crossing – by a vessel using Flettner rotors only – took place in 1926 proving the principle. However, technical challenges and the market situation prevented more widespread application.
A hundred years later, after exiting another IT company in 2012, Tuomas Riski, the CEO of Norsepower, started to search for a new potential cleantech concept. A technology, that would have a big impact on global CO2 emissions, and potentially a base for a new start-up company.
He happened to meet a team of people, including famous naval architect, Professor, Dr. H.C Kai Levander from Finland, who had an idea of bringing a modernized Flettner rotor to the market and whose ideas are reflected in the core mechanics of Norsepower Rotor Sails. From this union of well-known principles and new innovation, Rotor Sail technology was born.
The founders decided to start calling Norsepower’s products Rotor Sails. With a product name like this, it could be communicated to the market that Norsepower’s product is a modernized version of the Flettner rotor, which actually does exactly the same as a sail of a sailing ship. Later on, the name has become synonymous to Flettner rotors in general.
Norsepower’s business concept was initially developed in collaboration between founding board members Moray Martin of MB Martin and Partners Limited, and Erik Floman from Korkia Venture Insight.