For us Wärtsilians, purpose drives everything we do. Our aim is to make a difference by enabling sustainable societies with smart technology and this vision is embedded in the development of new solutions for businesses, customers, societies – and the future.
At the moment, every Wärtsilian, across the globe, is taking part in the most exciting transformation in the history of the company. We are moving on from words to actions to fulfil our purpose. We are witnessing new tactics evolving and new strategies enhancing our operations and offering. We aim to break new grounds with inspiring innovations, technologies and solutions that shape the future of businesses, customers and societies.
To deliver on these promises, our teams at Wärtsilä are designing, building and implementing various practical ways to embed the purpose in our daily work in all divisions in natural and meaningful ways. All these initiatives are set to contribute to a cleaner and more sustainable future. Hybrid vessels, battery storage technology, energy management systems, the 100% renewable energy future approach, building the Smart Marine Ecosystem, as well as robotised processes are excellent examples of the change taking place around and within us.
One concrete way to tap into the wide-ranging expertise that stems from the experience of all Wärtsilians was the launch of our new collaborative innovation platform, Spark, in which the first focused campaign was built solely around the theme “our purpose in action”. As innovation is built into our DNA, what would be a more appropriate way to harness these ideas than taking the best of them to the Venture Board, where ideators have a chance to pitch their proposals to top management?
After a rigorous evaluation process, seven out of the 96 ideas submitted to Spark made their way to the final stages of the Venture Board. These initiatives included ways to make Wärtsilä plastic-free, data collection and analysis of our carbon footprint to help achieve carbon neutrality, a platform for Wärtsilians to earn points from sustainable activities, sustainability-as-a-service to involve third parties to enable companies to invest in environment-friendly products, donating unused containers to charitable and community projects, autonomous smart docking and Wärtsilä deploying its know-how to assemble and maintain floating houses and cities.
Each participant had to face tough questions, by the Board members, concerning their ideas. In the end, two of the ideas – carbon neutrality and carbon footprint visualisation by Markus Zehnder and Les Creak and Project Container by Annika Brokvist – were chosen to share the top spot.
For Annika, the next step is to assemble a task force to determine the best course of action for the idea of container reuse. When it comes to Les and Markus, the duo will analyse potential solutions and talk to their peers about the entire process.
However, this is not the end of the story for the other five ideas. As promised by the jury, they will all be used and pushed forward in some form.
The Venture Board winners are far from being the only measure Wärtsilä is taking to boost its smart innovation and living our purpose in action. The examples are plentiful. To name a few: We are leading the way to a 100% renewable energy future where the majority of energy will be produced from solar and wind power. An Oceanic Awakening is focused on the radical transformation of the world’s marine and energy industry into one supremely efficient, ecologically sound and digitally connected ecosystem. And the WeLeap app creates awareness and supports employees in their own personal digital transformation journey.
We reach out beyond our own borders, too. The SparkUp Challenge seeks to bring new players into the game by giving the floor to promising start-ups and their grand ideas that can help Wärtsilä realise its vision and live it to the maximum. On top of this, we are building our Smart Technology Hub, a new centre of research, product development, and production, in Vaskiluoto, Vaasa, where we will collaborate with other operators and researchers.
Our new Wärtsilä Helsinki Campus and its state-of-the-art solutions are just a taste of the many great examples of new directions that Wärtsilä is headed towards at full steam. Our purpose is now gaining momentum. This is ‘the moment’ for us Wärtsilians to shape the future business landscape.