Laser startup Bird Control Group, from Global Student Entrepreneur of the Year 2015 Steinar Henskes, today announced a partnership with Total to repel birds from their offshore installations, like oilrigs.
To be more precise: it’s a partnership between Bird Control Group, Total E&P The Netherlands (a subsidiary of the French oil company Total) and CHC Helicopter (a partner of Total in getting to the oilrigs in the first place). Together with Total and CHC, the startup created the Aerolaser Helipad, which uses a laser and sound system to repel birds in a friendly way.
The partnership targets helipads on oilrigs because birds leave a large amount of guano (bird poop) there. Cleaning and maintaining those helipads can be very expensive.
Problem to solution
Total can be seen as both partner and customer. “However, it was mainly a partner because they helped with the product development”, Henskes told StartupJuncture. The oil company also supported the development financially, with “several hundreds of thousands of euros.”
Henskes just got back from a business trip, hoping to expand his system to the Middle East and Asia. “Oil companies are amongst the biggest companies in the world, with the biggest revenues, but also with the biggest problems. I want to prove that the system is a solution for them.”
Photo by Pieter van Marion (creative commons via Flickr)