Volvo Penta and Qamcom Group.

form new start-up under the name Cetasol.

August 31, 2021

Volvo Penta and Qamcom Group form a start-up under the company name Cetasol. The new company is based on a spinoff from Volvo Penta and will be targeted to help commercial marine vessels minimize emissions and maximize efficiency. The partnership was formed with the support and guidance of CampX, the Volvo Group’s global innovation arena for technology and business transformation.

By initiating Cetasol, Volvo Penta and Qamcom Group are investing in the start-up of the company, which will be led by Co-Founder Ethan Faghani.

How it started

Cetasol starts with the development and offering of iHelm, a marine digital platform for optimization of fuel consumption or energy usage. The iHelm idea came from within the new technology development team at Volvo Penta and was led by Ethan Faghani, the former Chief Engineer of Automation and AI at Volvo Penta. It was recognized that this solution could have a large impact on the fuel efficiency of customer operations. A preliminary pilot test was run with a Volvo Penta customer, which showed a 17% reduction in fuel consumption. At this stage, the idea was lifted out of Volvo Penta and evaluated in CampX. From here it was decided to spin off into a start-up together with Qamcom Group. Qamcom Group, founded in 2001 – and positioned between wireless connectivity, autonomous systems, and industrial IoT – is a leading technology group with experience in co-founding and investing in new technology-based companies. Having been a competent partner to Volvo Group in other projects it was a clear choice.

The team from left to right: Jakob Ursby, Volvo Penta, Helene Niklasson, Group Trucks Technology, Christopher Hedvall, Volvo Autonomous Solutions, Ethan Faghani, Cetasol, Jonas Sandberg, Qamcom

The team from left to right: Jakob Ursby, Volvo Penta, Helene Niklasson, Group Trucks Technology, Christopher Hedvall, Volvo Autonomous Solutions, Ethan Faghani, Cetasol, Jonas Sandberg, Qamcom

“The current pace of technological developments means we need to find additional ways to create customer value through innovation,” says Jakob Ursby, Director of Business Development at Volvo Penta. “To be a world leader in sustainable power solutions we need to diversify the way we develop and take products to market and drive sustainability together in different partnerships. At Volvo Penta, we are already working with services and AI, but the unique thing is that the idea has spun off and is growing in a start-up environment with an external tech partner.”

The captain’s own “personal trainer”

The iHelm system consists of an on-board interface and a cloud solution that utilizes Artificial Intelligence (AI) to continuously find the optimum operation. In this case, interpretation of data and recognition of patterns that gives optimum recommendations for minimizing fuel consumption or energy usage.

iHelm has been compared to the captain’s own “personal trainer” helping operate the vessel more sustainably. Cetasol will work very closely with customers and their vessels, to maximize efficiency.

“The need for increased sustainability has never been more relevant and technology will play a key role in creating new solutions,” says co-founder and CEO of Cetasol, Ethan Faghani. “Cetasol’s mission will be to help commercial marine companies save time and energy by identifying ways to be more efficient through an inte