Take a time trip with us through 145 years of company history:
Hamburg Südamerikanische Dampfschifffahrts-Gesellschaft is founded as a joint-stock company by representatives of eleven Hamburg merchant houses. Three steamers of barely 4,000 GRT sail to Brazil in a monthly service.
The era of the fast steamer on the South America passage begins with the "Cap" steamships "Cap Vilano" and "Cap Arcona I".
The company has over 50 ships totalling around 325,000 GRT, among them the three large high-speed steamers "Cap Finisterre", "Cap Trafalgar" and "Cap Polonio".
After the loss of the entire fleet in the First World War, reconstruction of liner shipping begins with chartered vessels.
With the “Cap Polonio”, the glittering era of the sea cruise begins. Hamburg Süd achieves worldwide importance in this sector in the 1920s and 1930s.
The “Cap Arcona II” is put into service as the flagship of the Hamburg Süd passenger fleet. She just needs 15 days for sailing from Hamburg to Buenos Aires.
The Dr. August Oetker company acquires an interest in Hamburg Süd.
Hamburg Süd has the largest fleet in its history to date – 52 ships of more than 400,000 GRT.
Second total loss of the fleet as a result of the Second World War. Ships are lost or have to be surrendered as part of reparation payments.
Resumption of the liner service between Europe and South America East Coast.
Hamburg Süd extended its shipping activities to the tramp area. Start of tanker shipping and expansion of the refrigerated business under the name of RAO (Rudolf A. Oetker KG).
The Dr. August Oetker company takes over the business of Hamburg Süd completely.
Entry into the Mediterranean routes with the takeover of Deutsche Levante Linie.
Liner service resumed between North America and South America under the name Columbus Line.
Columbus Line commences services between North America and Australia/New Zealand.
Hamburg Süd takes over the Bremen-based Atlas Levante-Linie (ALL).
The first full container ships – Columbus New Zealand, Columbus Australia and Columbus America – are deployed between U.S. East Coast and Australia/New Zealand, pioneering containerization in the Pacific.
Hamburg Süd also opens full container services from Europe to South America East Coast. The containerization strides ahead.
Takeover of Deutsche-Nah-Ost-Linie.
Takeover of a 50 percent stake in the Spanish line Ybarra y Cia. Sudamerica S.A.
Acquisition of the UK's Furness Withy Group, owner of, among others, the prestigious Royal Mail Line and The Pacific Steam Navigation Company (PSNC). Takeover of the Swedish Laser Lines, Rotterdam Zuid-America Lijn (RZAL) and Havenlijn.
Acquisition of the Brazilian shipping company Aliança and South Seas Steamship. To this day, Aliança is an independent subsidiary company of Hamburg Süd.
In 1999 follows the acquisition of South Pacific Container Lines and Transroll's Europe – South America East Coast liner operations.
Acquisition of the Inter-America Services of the American shipping company Crowley American Transport (CAT).
With the beginning of the new decade the new "Cap San" class vessels are put into service. They are 257 meters long and have a stowage capacity of 3,800 TEU.
Acquisition of the Ellerman services and takeover of the Kien Hung liner services Asia – South America in April.
The brands Columbus Line and Crowley American Transport are replaced by the Hamburg Süd brand.
On 1 January, the Ellerman brand is replaced by the well-known and globally important Hamburg Süd brand.
Acquisition of all the shares of Ybarra y Cía. Sudamérica S.A. (Ybarra Sud) in December.
Purchase of FANZL Fesco Australia New Zealand Liner Services and thus of cross trade activities from Fesco between Australia / New Zealand and Asia as well as North America.
The brand Ybarra y Cía. Sudamérica S.A. (Ybarra Sud) is replaced by the Hamburg Süd Iberia S.A brand in December.
Double christening of the "Bahia" and "Bahia Blanca" in Korea in February. The two ships are the first of a total of six identical 3,752 TEU container ships.
Takeover of the liner operations of Costa Container Lines – to the Mediterranean, South America East and North Coast, Central America and the Caribbean – as from 1 December 2007.
The FANZL Fesco Australia New Zealand Liner Services brand is replaced by the Hamburg Süd brand in January.
Hamburg Süd christens the largest-ever container ship in the company's history in March. The "Rio de la Plata" is the first newbuilding in a series of six identical vessels each possessing a slot capacity of 5,900 TEU. At a length of 286 metres, the "Rio" class is precisely one bay longer than the 5,552 TEU "Monte" class vessels.
On 1 January, the Costa Container Lines (CCL) brand is replaced by the Hamburg Süd brand.
In October 2010 the 7,100 TEU container ship “Santa Clara” was put into service at the Daewoo-Yard (DSME) in South Korea. She is the largest vessel ever to have sailed under the Hamburg Süd flag. A further nine “Santa” class vessels are due to be delivered for the shipping group by the end of 2012.
Hamburg Süd celebrates its 140th anniversary – among other things with the special exhibition “140 years of Hamburg Süd” at the International Maritime Museum in Hamburg.
With the naming ceremony of the “Santa Barbara”, Hamburg Süd christens the last ship in a series of ten new builds in the “Santa” class. Like her nine sister ships, she has a stowage capacity of 7,100 TEUs and is equipped with 1,600 reefer points.
Naming ceremony for the last three ships in the new “Cap San” class with a nominal container stowage capacity of 9,600 TEU. With 2,100 reefer plugs, they also have the highest reefer capacity worldwide. Hamburg Süd enters into the routes between Asia and Northern Europe and the Western Mediterranean as well as services between Asia and North America.
Hamburg Süd takes over the container liner services of Compañía Chilena de Navegación Interoceánica S.A. (CCNI). Liner operations are continued under the well-known brand on the main routes between South America’s West Coast and Asia, Europe and North America.
Hamburg Süd is the world’s first container shipping line to publish its Sustainability Report in accordance with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 Standard Disclosures (Core).
Built in the early 1960s, the listed building complex in Willy-Brandt-Straße now stands resplendent following its extensive refurbishment. Along with a new building, it offers around 800 Hamburg Süd employees a modern workplace in line with the latest ergonomic principles.
145 years of Hamburg Süd: whereas three steamers operated on a regular service between Hamburg and South America in the founding year 1871, now the company has 177 ships in service around the globe and a workforce of approximately 6,300 employees.
In December, after more than 80 years, Dr. August Oetker KG announces plans to divest its shipping business and all related activities. Acquisition negotiations are conducted with the Danish shipping line Maersk.
Since December 1, 2017, Hamburg Süd belongs to A.P. Moller - Maersk. At the same time, Hamburg Süd will remain a commercially independent company with its own brand values. The Hamburg Süd brand will continue to represent quality, reliability, and flexibility, in addition to providing a specific service offering with outstanding local expertise and personal contacts in over 250 offices worldwide.