SafetyNet Technologies has secured £1.8 million in new funding to accelerate the development of precision fishing technology for the commercial fishing industry. The investment round was led by Mirova’s Althelia Sustainable Ocean Fund and joined by Builders Vision, The Schmidt Family Foundation, and a US Family Office with an interest in ocean health.
‘Mirova is thrilled to continue its support for SN Tech and their growing technology toolkit to improve the sustainability of fishing worldwide,’ said Mirova UK investment director David Barley.
‘We view well managed fisheries as a key source of food and for many countries, employment and economic gain. However, to date, most fisheries have lacked the tools and data to operate effectively. SN Tech’s low-cost technology is helping fishers be at the heart of building sustainable and scalable practices. We are very proud to support them and to be a small part of this story.’
The primary goal behind the activities of SafetyNet Technologies is to design and build precision fishing devices to increase the selectivity of commercial fishing operations, contributing to a more sustainable fishing industry.
‘Builders Vision is proud to support SNTech and their work to eliminate seafood waste in our oceans,’ commented Builders Vision senior programme officer Peter Bryant.
‘Its precision fishing devices offer promising and scalable solutions for fishers that help address the widespread issue of discarded catch, which has been recognised as a significant threat to the long-term sustainability of fisheries, marine ecosystems, and food security.’
SafetyNet Technologies’ flagship product, Pisces, which uses coloured LED lights to attract target species while simultaneously deterring unwanted by-catch, has already been shown to improve the selectivity of fishing gear.
The result is that crews spend less time sorting fish, and the impact of fishing on marine ecosystems is reduced.
Pisces is already commercially available – but this investment round is expected to be instrumental in enabling SafetyNet Technologies to expand into new markets such as the North American fishing industry.
In addition to entering new markets, this round of funding will support the introduction of a robust and affordable underwater camera that can attach to most fishing gear.
This is predicted to provide fishing crews with previously unseen views of their fishing gear in action and valuable insights into the effectiveness of fishing gear and fish behaviour.
Development of the underwater camera began in early 2021. However, with this latest investment, SafetyNet Technologies can accelerate the process and bring the underwater camera to market sooner than planned.
This investment round will also enable the development of a sensor node that collects essential marine environmental data. The sensor node will attach to most types of fishing gear enabling crews to collect data on temperature, salinity, turbidity, and depth.
SafetyNet has proved that low-cost technology can benefit fisheries around the world, improving the accuracy of their target catch, while increasing profits. The Schmidt Family Foundation has been proud to support SafetyNet since 2016 with grant funding,’ commented Schmidt Family Foundation executive director Joe Sciortino.
‘We’re now excited to invest in this round as SafetyNet expands its work in the U.S. and continues to develop new technologies that will benefit ocean health.’