Evoy is a Norwegian company founded in 2018 with a clear vision: to revolutionize navigation towards an emissions-free future. Evoy’s mission aligns with the urgent need to eliminate pollution in the seas and expedite the transition towards emission-free navigation, pioneering the manufacturing of powerful and sustainable electric motors for boats. This interview delves into the origins, purpose, innovative solutions, and the impact that Evoy aims to generate in the global navigation market.
Interview to Leif A. Stavøstrand (Evoy Co-Founder & CEO)
A Seed&Click interview
How was Evoy founded?
I founded Evoy together with my father, Gunnar, in 2018 in Florø, Norway. Evoy’s mission is to eliminate boating emissions and to accelerate the transition to emission-free boating. Our goal is to decarbonize global maritime transport across the commercial and, subsequently, the recreational sector, while maintaining our position as global leader.
In my father’s words: ‘We don’t inherit the planet from our ancestors; we merely borrow it from our children.’
As a parent, I know it’s essential to take better care of the earth for future generations. I also have a lifelong relationship with the sea. I’m a thalassophile. I grew up on a fairytale island, Svanøy, in western Norway. While other kids played football, I was obsessed with boats. I studied naval architecture at university, and followed up with an MBA in Executive Management, and Entrepreneurial Studies at MIT. My passion for the sea led to a long maritime career wherein I circumnavigated the globe several times, visiting countless ports in 40 countries. I eventually achieved captain rank on an 89-meter tanker. But the voyage had only begun.
When you combine climate concern with an intense maritime life, it culminates in launching an electric boating company.
In 2019, the first demo boat, EVOY1 was born with the first fully electrified Evoy inboard propulsion system. Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg launched and christened the boat. It broke the world record – unofficially – with 55 knots speed. In 2021, the first customers received their turn-key Evoy® systems in the boat of their choice.
Which market opportunity do you aim to cover?
Norway has led the world’s adoption of electric cars. Evoy will lead the world’s adoption of electric boats.
Both Europe and North America are increasing regulations on emissions from commercial and recreational boats. Many customers – including boat builders, the coastal industry, tourism and transportation, and port authorities – are committed to near-term electrification.
‘Everything that can be electrified, will be electrified,’ said Johannes Teyssen, former CEO of E.ON SE.
At this point, we are about five years behind the car industry. Once we reach 5% of the electric boat market, we will reach the inflection point where demand for electric motor systems is accelerating. We will be there to meet the demand. By 2030, we believe close to 20% of new boats will be electric, which is very exciting. E-boating will follow the same trajectory as cars.
In my mind, there are three main obstacles now. Price, range, and – drumroll please – TRUST! We meet hundreds of potential customers who have the money AND where we are confident that their desired range is covered. Then it boils down to trust. We have something new and relatively unknown. Evoy is only five years old. We endeavor to be transparent, demonstrate integrity, and show both competence and consistency.
We do this with our electric motor systems, which we’ve developed alongside great customers. This means our motors have an excellent, evidence-based product-to-market fit. And we do this by reiterating our mission and value proposition in channels like this.
We are ready to scale heavily – with a booming market ahead of us and mature engineering and operations.
Which problem are you solving with your products?
The primary problem we’re solving is emissions. Diesel and gasoline boat engines cause water and air pollution. As you probably know, fossil fuels are the largest contributor to global climate change by far. All regulations result in a future without fossil fuel-powered engines. They’re in the process of being banned.
We are the future of boating. Evoy’s sustainable, powerful inboard and outboard electric motors eliminate boating emissions. They also heavily reduce operating costs, enabling boat owners to save money in the long term.
The secondary problem we’re solving is noise pollution. Combustion boat engines are disruptively loud. Electric motors are comparatively very silent, adding value in commercial and recreational market segments.
But there’s more. Even if you’re committed to eliminating emissions, you might worry about the power, range, and reliability of an electric boat motor. We solve that too. As the global leader in electric powertrain solutions, Evoy makes the most powerful inboard and outboard electric motors in the world. They have a long and extendable range plus supercharging capability. With four moving parts, in stark contrast to the 2000 parts in a combustion engine, electric propulsion motors are extremely reliable. The motors are linked to our advanced software with digital features including fleet management, remote diagnostics, and more. Ultimately, our motor system results in approximately 80% lower maintenance costs when compared to combustion engines.
What type of products/service do you provide with?
We make the world’s most powerful inboard and outboard electric motors with 120-400+ hp. Evoy’s electric boat motors have a long and extendable range of 25+ NM at 25 knots (based on 126kWh configuration, 80% DoD, 4.0 kWh/nm, exp. From Goldfish X9). We also have boats with Evoy motor systems on the water doing +2 hours in 20 knots.
Unlike ICEs, the full torque of an electric motor can be available from 0 rpm. Evoy allows you to plane faster and there is no need for prewarming the system.
We also offer the only supercharging enabled electric powertrain, which charges batteries to 80% in 45 minutes (based on a typical configuration with DC supercharger).
The e-powertrain system comes with state-of-the-art software, security and logistics, a programmable motorcontroller, remote diagnostics, and more.
We’re often asked, ‘What type of boat do you recommend?’. We are agnostic to boat type. Evoy’s plug-and-play electric systems currently suited for both inboard and outboard planing hull boats between 20 and 50 feet, and displacement up to 80 feet. And we can retrofit or speak to your preferred boat builder to find your best solution.
We currently have electric motors in many high-output commercial and leisure boats. Our customers and partners include Axopar, Nimbus, Goldfish,Tideman, Hydrolift, Arronet, Polarcirkel, and beyond.
Where are you based and in which countries are you having business?
We’re based in Florø, Norway. We have a satellite office in Oslo. We have customers throughout the Nordics and Europe and we are selling to other countries, such as Japan and Canada, on a case by case basis. We are constantly expanding to other countries through chosen partners and have sold to 18 countries thus far. We aim to be the most sought-after brand worldwide for high-performance electric boating.
Which is your business model? How do you monetize?
We sell high-power, high-power motors directly to boatbuilders as well as to dealerships, leveraging powerful co-branding opportunities and existing global networks. As we grow, we’ll increase B2C sales.
We have many high-end customers already onboard including Hurtigruten, Aquaculture, and ports, along with boatbuilders like Axopar, Goldfish, Arronet, Tideman, Polarcirkel, Hydrolift, and Iguana Yachts.
Digital products, options such as chargers, range extenders, screens, plus retrofits, support, and service will also be a part of Evoy business model going forward.
Which is your competitive advantage vs your competitors?
With the world’s most powerful electric boat motors, Evoy is positioned to win the high-power, high-margin market.
- The most powerful electric boat motors in the world
- Hurricane 400+ hp
- Storm 300+ hp
- Gale 200+ hp
- Breeze 120+ hp
- Long and extendable range: +100 nm at slow speed, and 25+ NM range at 25 knots. More will be achieved with the right boats and/or range extenders.
- Supercharge battery to 80% in 45 minutes — faster in the future.
- Pioneering plug-and-play electric motor systems
- Unique digital software and UI delivering a superior user experience that reduces OpEx
- Best 24/7 service and support in the industry
In terms of impact, which SDG in blue economy does you company cover? What’s your vision of Blue economy?
We exist in order to help the maritime industry reach the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, as well as to conserve marine environments.
- Climate action: Evoy electric boat motors have no CO2 emissions or fumes, which is better for our health and the planet’s health now and in the future.
- Clean water: Evoy electric boats do not leave oil and other harmful offsets in the water.
- Marine life: Our electric motors are virtually silent, enabling marine environments to thrive undisturbed in terms of noise pollution, oil pollution, and CO2 emissions.
- Innovation: Evoy is a sustainable innovator. We’re constantly challenging ourselves to make our entire supply chain more eco-friendly.
What are you looking for now and which are your current needs? (clients, investment,…?
Evoy is expanding production. We have steadily grown through a series of investment rounds and have been successful once again in raising the required capital to develop the business further. Notably, Axopar – the largest boatbuilder in the Nordics – joined Evoy, at 10% ownership, also bringing an extensive dealership network, expert boating knowledge, and significant orders – firstly over €1m to be delivered in 2023.
Current shareholders also include notable investors such as Katapult Ocean, Klaveness Marine, and Grieg Edge, who recently strengthened their commitment and position. The EIC Fund, serving as a cornerstone investor, also continued its significant support with an €1m Euro equity investment. Furthermore, the round gained support from renowned entrepreneurs including Jakob Hatteland (Autostore), Johan Brand (Kahoot), and Martin Anderlind (Northvolt).
We can’t wait to share more when the time comes.
In its short existence, Evoy has transcended as a beacon of innovation in the nautical industry. From its foundation in 2018 in Norway to its global expansion and strategic collaborations with significant industry players, the company has established a firm commitment to sustainability and reducing emissions in the seas. Its focus on creating powerful and efficient electric motors not only addresses crucial pollution and noise issues but also demonstrates clear leadership towards a cleaner and more sustainable future for navigation. Evoy continues to be a benchmark in seeking innovative and sustainable solutions for a healthier and environmentally respectful maritime world.