Tschudi timeline

140 years of history

Today, The Tschudi Group is run by the 4th generation of the Tschudi family, Felix H. Tschudi. Third generation, Captain Henry F. Tschudi was engaged in the family ship-owning business from 1945–1992. Each generation has been entrepreneurial and committed to new strategies thus creating a memorable and exciting history spanning over four generations. Our vision “Creating value by daring to be different” has been clearly reflected over the years and some of these pioneering events are highlighted on this page. 

It takes a special kind of dedication to stay in business for 140 years! Take a look at our timeline to see how it all came about.


Humble beginnings

In 1883, Captain Camillo Eitzen gave up a life at sea and returned to Norway to establish a business on land. He was joined in 1891 by his friend Captain Henry F. Tschudi and together they were the first partners in the shipping company Camillo Eitzen & Co. later renamed Tschudi & Eitzen.


From sailing to steamship

In the late 1800s, the major transition from sailing to steamship started. Henry Tschudi travelled to his forefathers in Switzerland to seek investors. In 1895, he succeeded and money was raised to finance the construction of a new 2,000 dwt steamship to be built in Norway. The ship was delivered in 1896 and named “Uto” after a mountain in Switzerland. The venture was successful, and in the following decade a further nine ships were produced.

The tradition of Swiss names was maintained as a sign of respect for the Swiss investors. Another sign of respect was the funnel mark on the vessels, this being based on the City of Zurich coat of arms combined with the Norwegian colours.


The Russo-Japanese war

During the early 1900s the Tschudi & Eitzen ships operated in Chinese waters. One task was transporting Chinese immigrant workers from Hainan to Malaysia. Things changed dramatically when the Russo-Japanese war broke out in 1904. While in Port Arthur, the ship “Sentis” – captained by Niels Stange Nielsen – came under Japanese fire and was seized by the Russians.

“Sentis” was ordered to a neutral harbour “Chefoo”, where the Norwegian officers were detained for three months before being allowed to return to Norway. In Port Arthur. “Sentis” was sunk by the Japanese. Our loss was compensated by war insurance.

114 years later when in Port Arthur, Felix H. Tschudi paid respect to Captain Nielsen and his crew. This historical event is yet another which shows commitment and true dedication.


Pioneers in South Asia

In 1964, an exciting opportunity arose which resulted in a new Tschudi & Eitzen venture, transshipment of oil – also referred to as ship-to-ship transfer (STS) and lightering. A depressed market and challenging conditions involving the shallow waters of the River Karnapuli led Tschudi & Eitzen to become the sole transporter of oil products to Chittagong in East Pakistan (now Bangladesh).

Following Bangladesh’s independence in 1971, the contract was not renewed. Instead, the tugs and barges, already acquired for the Bangladeshi operation, were then used for conventional salvage and towage. This was the starting point for ITC, now Tschudi Offshore & Towage, as known today.


At the technological forefront

The latter part of the 1960s was characterized by technical and operational changes in the shipping industry – what is retroactively referred to as the “shipping revolution”. This contributed to lower freight costs, which again stimulated global trade.

Captain Henry F. Tschudi had been looking at the potential of being able to carry wet and dry cargoes with the same ship. For a while he looked at grain transport in tankers, but instead came to concentrate on the OBO carrier – a vessel capable of carrying Oil, Bulk, and Ore cargoes. Orders for OBOs were placed – two were delivered in 1968 and the third one in 1969. Tschudi was again among the pioneers in a new market segment.


When life gives you lemons

With freight rates high in the 1970’s, Tschudi & Eitzen saw an opportunity to widen their horizons and think bigger. The answer was an Ultra Large Crude Carrier (ULCC) and an order was placed with Uddevallavarvetin Sweden for a giant of approximately 490 000 tons in September 1973.

In November of the same year, the market collapsed as a consequence of the Yom Kippur war (October 1973) and reduced oil production, but the contract had already been signed! The cancellation resulted in Tschudi & Eitzen being required to order two 50.000 bulk carriers and pay the shipyard a USD 30 million cancellation fee in compensation.

The bulk carrier orders were converted to OBOs. These OBOs were among the first to be equipped with Framo deep well pumps particularly suitable for ships alternating between wet and dry cargoes. The entrepreneurial instinct and courage to enter new markets was again evident in Tschudi & Eitzen.


Conversion of tanker Venture Espana into the largest submersible heavy lift vessel in the world

Entering the 1980’s, Captain Tschudi was considering new tug and barge projects, and in 1982 Tschudi & Eitzen acquired the tanker, Venture Espana. Based on a concept from ITC, the tanker was converted into a heavy lift deck cargo vessel. The conversion, which consisted of shortening the vessel and lowering the deck, was successfully completed in December 1982 and the ship renamed Sibig Venture. With a capacity of 44,000 tons, it was classified as the largest such vessel in the world.

Over the following years, Sibig Venture carried out several demanding transports, such as carrying two jack-up rigs in one lift, large semi-submersible drilling rigs, barges, large offshore constructions, and even an Aframax tanker in two parts. In 1988, Sibig Venture transported the two halves of the Ekofisk protective barrier from Rotterdam to Ålfjorden, Norway in two voyages.


Entry into Eastern Europe

The new economic development in the former Communist states in Eastern Europe was followed with interest. In 1997, Tschudi & Eitzen was approached by the Norwegian broker Pareto looking for a partner with shipping experience to bid for the Estonian Shipping Corporation (ESCO) in Tallinn. ESCO had been a part of the Soviet-era shipping empire managed from Moscow and had a fleet of 48 vessels and an organization of 240 persons in Tallinn.

It was now up for sale in the government’s privatization campaign. Tschudi & Eitzen saw opportunities in Russia, Estonia, and the Baltics, with the profit from Tschudi & Eitzen Product Tankers, took a stake in Baltic Sea AS thus becoming a 10% partner in ESCO. This was the start of a rather complex process leading to T&E becoming the sole owners of ESCO in August 2002. Now with a foothold in the Baltic, T&E could concentrate on developing existing business and investigating new ventures in the region.


A new start

A new era started for Tschudi Shipping Company AS in November of 2003 after the split of Tschudi & Eitzen into two separate family-owned companies. The new company required a new logo. As you can see, the Tschudi logo is a personal logo – combining the family name with a flag from the original funnel mark from 1896.


Daring to be different

In 2006, again “daring to be different”, Tschudi Shipping Company bought the closed Sydvaranger iron ore mine with adjacent port facilities in Kirkenes, northern Norway. In 1997, Kirkenes Transit, a company focusing on the use of Kirkenes as a transshipment port for Russian cargoes coming out of the shallow and icebound White Sea ports, was established.

Eight years later, the company performed its first ship-to-ship (STS) oil transshipments and now operates under the name Tschudi Arctic Transit. It requires some patience to succeed! It turned out that the mine could be reopened, and the first shipment of iron ore concentrate left Kirkenes for China in November 2009.

Today, Tschudi still has a strong interest in the mine and Tschudi Bulk Terminals is a fully operational terminal offering port services for all types of vessels and offshore units.


Tschudi Logistics founded

Tschudi Logistics is founded. Later in 2017, the two companies Tschudi Project Transports and Tschudi Logistics are merged into a collected Tschudi Logistics.


Opening an office in Poland

Tschudi Logistics Group re-opens a branch office in Poland, where we successfully started our business some years ago. Located in the heart of Szczecin, our new office will serve the customers across the country.


Opening an office in Sweden

With our Swedish office, located not too far from the Port of Gothenburg, we are able to further reach across Scandinavia and serve customers across the region.


Opening an office in The Netherlands

The office in Rotterdam opens for the opportunity of further developing services connected to the transportation/flow of cargo from Europe and Scandinavia to the CIS countries and the Baltics.


Tschudi Logistics breaks ground in Africa

For years, Tschudi had kept a keen eye on the local oil and gas sector in Mozambique, which featured vast unexplored oil and gas reserves but limited offshore infrastructure. Following the discovery of enormous gas reserves offshore, Tschudi Logistics officially entered the African continent in 2019 with an office in Maputo in the South of Mozambique.

After all these years, Tschudi was once again at the forefront of developments in the logistics industry.


Aquirering ISO 14001 and 45001, 2022

Completing certifications for ISO 14001 & ISO 45001. 

The certifications and the annual external audits help to ensure to stay in movement, and to continuously develop the integrated management system in compliance with internationally recognized standards. The sole purpose for Tschudi Logistics is to stay on top of the game in all aspects of business.