ChartCo, a UK-based supplier of digital navigation and voyage compliance services backed by Equistone Partners Europe, has merged with the Canadian navigation solutions provider Marine Press, backed by Champlain Financial Corporation.
The move will result in the creation of a new global company called OneOcean, which will provide navigation and compliance solutions to the commercial marine industry.
Equistone invested in ChartCo in June 2016 through Equistone Partners Europe Fund V. The merger with Marine Press, which will be supported by a refinancing of the wider group by Pemberton, represents the third strategic transaction ChartCo has completed since Equistone’s initial investment, following its bolt-on acquisitions of Docmap in April 2017 and Marine Position in June 2017.
Tim Swales, Partner at Equistone and member of ChartCo’s board, says: “ChartCo has firmly established itself at the forefront of the maritime navigation industry’s transition from physical products to digital services. Since our initial investment, the business has continued to grow organically and, with Equistone’s backing, completed two strategic acquisitions previously. We worked closely with ChartCo’s management team to identify Marine Press as the right partner for the business. The creation of OneOcean will provide an expanded service offering to a significant international client base, making it the global market leader.”
Martin Taylor, Chief Executive Officer of ChartCo, says: “For some time we have been looking to further expand our business and we identified Marine Press as a like-minded partner that would complement our own business and expand the offerings to our growing international client base. Marine Press has created game-changing navigation software and award-wining products and services that will complement our own integrated digital navigation products to really create a huge step forward for both of our customer bases. The new OneOcean business will reflect the collaboration, knowledge and expertise of our two individual companies and build on individual strengths of research and development, service and support and territorial reach. I believe clients of both companies will see an immediate and comprehensive benefit to the move and I am really looking forward to working with Nicholas and his team.”
Nicholas Bourque, President of Marine Press, says: “This is a great opportunity for the Marine Press team and our clients, and I am looking forward to the creation of this new company and the joining of our two businesses. OneOcean will have, by far, the largest R&D capability in the sector and will offer the most innovative solutions for maritime compliance and digital navigation. The technology roadmap that the combined group is working on is really exciting and will take shipping into a new digital era.”
During the coming months the two companies will transition to a single OneOcean business operation. Until then, existing sales and service operations of both ChartCo and Marine Press will continue and customer operations remain unchanged.