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Champions Corner: Swedish entrepreneur fights climate change with the power of ocean waves



Jan Skjoldhammer is the founder and the creative mind behind the unique NoviOcean concept and CEO of Novige AB. Aside from the strategic decision-making and being the face of Novige AB, Jan has been deeply involved in all technical and practical issues related to the development, scaling up, and validation of the NoviOcean technology.

Tell us more about your company/organization 

With oceans covering more than two thirds of the Earth’s surface – and despite wave energy’s enormous potential (theoretically, wave energy could meet the world’s total electricity demand, according to the IPCC) – this powerful source of renewable energy remains mostly untapped.

Some of the reasons why ocean energy has not been deployed more commercially include perceptions around its reliability, simplicity and costs. However, each one of these can be addressed.

Reliability in ocean energy can be achieved by using technologies and systems that have been proven over time. Simplicity is an asset to ocean energy, as it allows for local production of parts and local maintenance. Of course, it’s also crucial for ocean energy technologies to be able to compete economically with other renewables soon after entering the market.

That’s where our company, Novige AB, comes in. We are a fast-growing cleantech startup which addresses these fundamental issues. We are developing a breakthrough wave energy concept called NoviOcean. With NoviOcean, our goal is to help fight climate change with profitable wave power. We focus on:

  • Utilizing simple, light-weight and proven components that have been used for decades in the hydropower industry and other mature industries.
  • Using a global licensing approach to locally manufacture and operate NoviOcean units.
  • Achieving a lower levelized cost of energy compared to offshore wind after deploying 50 MW of NoviOcean capacity.
  • Developing infrastructure platforms for future offshore hydrogen networks.


How do you intend to leverage (have leveraged) being an MI Champion?

Since being named an MI Champion, we have been garnering more industry attention, both in Sweden and internationally. For example, being an MI Champion preceded awards and recognitions like Guldstänk’s Innovator of the Year, Stena Line’s Propeller Prize and the Seal of Excellence from the European Commission.

Perhaps most importantly, we can leverage being an MI Champion to promote wave energy’s true potential, despite the industry’s previous struggles to gain traction in the commercial marketplace. It is important to show public and private stakeholders our strong performance numbers which have been validated by third parties and in wave laboratories.

Doing so not only builds confidence in the sector, it demonstrates that sustainable, cost-efficient and reliable access to electricity from ocean waves will be soon possible via NoviOcean on a global scale. Being associated with Mission Innovation gives us more credibility and even more courage.


Do you have any upcoming plans or announcements that you would like to share with the MI community?

We want to work with large global actors, investors and corporations from the oil and gas industry, the utilities sector and other major industrial sectors that want to play significant roles in mitigating the climate crisis by cutting their carbon emissions. If we can build a partnership with one or two large industrial actors, we can ensure the wave energy market develops exponentially, including large-scale deployment of the technology globally.

In particular, major offshore oil and gas companies can realize considerable value from partnering with us. While continuing to rely on their existing knowledge base and supply chain, our technology can help smooth the transition of their business models to ones based on renewables, including exploiting synergies unlocked by marine energy. Moreover, by offering our future partners the possibility to advertise their rebuilt brand directly on the sides of our NoviOcean floats (with an area as large as a 100 square-meter billboard on each side), we will further help them lift their profile and profit.

As we prepare our 1:5 scale NoviOcean prototype for long-term offshore deployment this winter, we welcome further dialogue with interested parties.