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  • Writer's pictureMark Watson-Mitchell

Windward Ltd – artificial presents real advantages

This little company is unique, it has created the only Maritime Artificial Intelligence system.


It has over 15 innovative AI models, it monitors over 2.2m vessels daily, it provides over 2,000 risk indicators on a weekly basis, and it also has over 20 data sources.


It is also loss-making, but it is fast-progressing and the profits are just on the horizon.


The £30m capitalised Windward Ltd (LON:WNWD) is the leading maritime AI company, providing an all-in-one platform for risk management and maritime domain awareness needs.


Its platform pushes the boundaries of comprehensive data and ground-breaking technology to solve the toughest maritime challenges.


By leveraging unmatched maritime domain expertise, augmented by best-in-class artificial intelligence and machine learning, the company empowers its partners to predict what’s over the horizon, eliminate uncertainty, and build organisations.


The Business


Windward, which was set up in 2010 and floated on the AIM in December 2021, is an Israel-based company that operates in predictive maritime analytics.


The company’s Predictive Intelligence combines artificial intelligence and big data to empower the global maritime industry with a 360-degree risk management solution and to enable customers and partners to understand the marine ecosystem and its broader impact on safety, finance and business.


The group’s AI-powered software solution provides real time information and insights on major seafaring vessels at sea, enabling stakeholders within the maritime eco-system to make intelligence-driven decisions to manage risk and achieve business and operational insights.


AI-Driven Profile for Every Vessel in the World


By fusing multiple data sources, and applying advanced machine learning models and proprietary behavioural activities, it creates unique identities for each entity in the maritime domain, delivering a holistic, spoofing-proof view of maritime risk.


Service Coverage and Customers


Windward’s customers include a number of leading participants across the maritime industry covering banks, commodity traders, insurers, government agencies, and major energy and shipping companies.


Under Trading and Shipping it covers oil and energy, shipping, marine insurance and commodity trading.


It offers sanction compliance, KYV (Know Your Vessel), customer due diligence, business intelligence, vetting, trade-based money laundering, and finally fuel consumption services.


Supply Chain and Logistics serves freight forwarders, importer and exporters, as well as ports and terminals.


This side offers ocean freight visibility, vessel estimated time of arrival, maritime AI ETA prediction, as well as port and terminal insights.


Government and Public covers law enforcement, together with defence and intelligence.


This main solution takes in maritime domain awareness, illegal unreported and unregulated fishing, lead investigation, together with multi-source investigation.


The group has over 130 top-name customers – including such companies as Shell, BP, Danske Bank, DSV, HSBC, Eastern Pacific Shipping, Freepoint, Frontex, Le Chameau, ABS, Gard, HM Treasury, MCB, Kharon, the UN, Navigator Gas, Generali, SOCAR, metro as well as the US department of Defence and Homeland Security.


On a revenue-by-customer basis Commercial took up 26% of the group’s near $22m sales last year, while Government accounted for a massive 74%.


On a sales per region basis Europe takes 40% of group revenues, the US 30%, APAC 16%, MEA 10%, South and Latin America 2%, and finally Israel accounts for 2%.


The Equity


There are 85,654,304 shares in issue.


Two leading Directors hold sizeable positions – co-founders Ami Daniel and Matan Peled each hold 7.32% of the equity, while Chairman Lord Browne of Madingley holds 167,512 shares (0.2%).


Larger holders include Aleph Venture Capital (16.28%), Gresham House Asset Management (9.11%), Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management (7.58%), XL Innovate (7.22%), Maritime Invest Scandinavia (6.99%), The Marc R Benioff Revocable Trust (5.89%), Story Leader (5.35%), Eliot International (3.93%), Oppenheimer & Co NY (3.72%) and La Maison ITF (3.19%).


Broker’s View – price objective of 115p a share


Analysts Kai Korschelt, Hayley Palmer and Minal Patel at Canaccord Genuity have a buy rating out on the group’s shares, looking for 115p, with a longer-term upside to 160p.


For the current year to end December 2023 they go for a lift in revenues to $25.6m ($21.6m), with last year’s $16.4m adjusted pre-tax loss of $16.4m halving to $8.5m deficit.


During this year they expect the group’s net cash position to reduce from $22.1m to $14.1m positive.


For the coming year they see $30.7m sales, then just a $4.1m loss, ending with $10.0m cash.


The 2025 year, the analysts reckon could push sales up to $36.9m and almost minimise the group’s loss to just $0.5m, while increasing net cash to $11.2m.


After that is when the goodies should really start to fall to the bottom line.


My View – an exciting takeover possibility


Windward is a leading predictive intelligence company, fusing artificial intelligence and maritime expertise seeking to digitalise the global maritime industry.


It is still developing its products and services, but I do believe that its marketplace is massive.


I can also see it making substantial profits within the next few years.


However, before that comes to pass, I predict that it could well be the subject of a takeover approach or two from bigger players within the shipping services sector.


Just think how well its services could tuck into the fold within my sector favourite Braemar.


Although it is still loss-making I am excited by this little company’s mega-potential.


And what is more its Software as a Service subscription model is boasting a cracking 99% Annual Recurring Revenue – I just love it!


With its shares at just 37.5p, my Target Price of 47p is an incredibly conservative objective, which I believe will be easily achieved within weeks.


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