Mitsui OSK Lines Invests in Innovative Seaglider Technology

A MOL container ship at sea
Updated Published

Japanese shipping giant Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) has invested in an American company developing a groundbreaking form of transportation. MOL Switch, MOL's US-based corporate venture capital arm, has strategically invested in Regent, the creator of hydrofoiling electric wing-in-ground-effect vessels known as seagliders.

These coastal transport gliders utilize existing dock infrastructure to transport people and goods over water distances of up to 300 km, all with zero emissions.

Billy Thalheimer, co-founder and CEO of Rhode Island-based Regent, stated, “This strategic partnership marks a significant step forward for seaglider market adoption in Japan. Having MOL as a maritime champion for seaglider technology underlines Regent’s market-leading traction in the country and paves the way to bring our high-speed, all-electric transportation solutions to coastal communities.”

MOL Switch's investment in Regent reflects the growing interest in seaglider technology within Japan. Other strategic investors in Regent include H.I.S. Group, one of Japan’s largest travel agencies, Japan Airlines Innovation Fund, the venture arm of Japan Airlines (JAL), and Yamato Holdings, Japan’s largest parcel delivery and logistics company.

Regent reports having already secured over 600 orders for seagliders, valued at more than $9 billion, from airline and ferry operators.