Forest Machinery

Launch event to kick off FORWARD'27 programme

Epec and Ponsse have embarked on the FORWARD’27 ecosystem programme, which targets the research and development of sustainable off-road vehicles and solutions.

Forward`27-launch event

FORWARD’27 is a joint programme of Ponsse’s and Epec. It was granted EUR 10 million funding by Business Finland in the challenger competition for leading companies in the spring of 2023. In total, the funding received by the program is up to 30 million euros, when the ecosystem of companies and actors built around the program receives its share of the funding. The goal of the programme is to promote export growth in Finland through research and product development.

Current and potential ecosystem partners for the FORWARD’27 programme were invited to a launch event in Tampere on 19 September 2023.

Closer look at the roadmap

The launch event offered a great opportunity for both current and potential ecosystem partners to discuss and learn more about FORWARD’27 and its possibilities. The experts from both Ponsse and Epec introduced in more detail the four-point roadmap of the program, the goals of which are focused on researching and developing responsible and environmentally friendly solutions in the field of mobile work machines.

The roadmap’s various themes aim to solve the technology and commercial challenges of off-road vehicles through ecosystem projects. The projects evolve around the programme’s themes, which are Autonomous Solutions, Sustainable Power, Data-driven Solutions and a Sustainable Supply Chain.

Five-year programme

The aim of Ponsse’s FORWARD’27 programme is to push the sustainability of mobile work machines to another level. This includes significantly reducing emissions from mobile work machines themselves or the manufacturing stage, cutting energy consumption and improving productivity, while maintaining or improving quality at the same time without tiring the operator.

- In the field of mobile work machines, there are several sustainable development targets. We hope to benefit the entire industry in the long run through this programme and its results,” says the CEO of Ponsse, Juho Nummela.

- This five-year programme is a great opportunity for Ponsse and Epec to foster collaboration in Finland. Together we create cutting-edge innovations for ecosystem partners and the entire industry, says Epec’s CEO Jyri Kylä-Kaila.

Building up the ecosystem

A wide ecosystem is built around the FORWARD’27 programme, which consists of companies and other partners such as universities and research organisations. The first members of the ecosystem have already been found.

- The programme has gathered a lot of interest, and the last few months have been busy since I’ve discussed the possibilities of the FORWARD’27 programme with various parties. The ecosystem is starting to form at a good pace, and many interesting cooperation patterns are emerging. However, it still isn’t ready, which means that new partners will be welcome now and, in the future, says the FORWARD’27 Programme Manager Jukka Laitinen from Ponsse.