Company History

Founded back in June 1865 initially as a ship owning and operating company in Luebeck (Germany), Bertling has come a long way. Young Friedrich H. Bertling at the age of 23 had the aim of providing transportation links throughout Scandinavia and the Baltic States. Leveraging his connections with decision-makers and local authorities, Friedrich H. Bertling - by that time Senator of Luebeck and Consul of the Kingdom of Norway - stressed the need for linking German industrial centers with Scandinavia and the Baltic states. Driven by this vision, Bertling founded his own transportation company specializing in ship owning, chartering, and freight forwarding.

The first vessels, innovative shipping lines and carefully managed growth

The establishment of the Riga-Luebeck steamship company in around 1900 and cooperation with the Hanseatic steamship corporation smoothed Bertling's way to establishing flourishing business relationships and the company's expansion in the shipping industry. Regular liner services to the Baltic States and the former USSR saw Bertling further invest in ships and barges. Following some recession caused by the World Wars, Bertling recovered rapidly in the 1950s and set up new shipping lines in the Baltic Sea and the Mediterranean. With the establishment of a logistics division in 1974 Bertling added customs clearance, warehousing, stevedoring, insurance, and numerous other project-forwarding services to its portfolio.

Expansion, sophisticated logistics services, and new business fields

Following its 100th anniversary, Bertling opened up its first offices abroad, in the United Kingdom, the Caspian, and Africa. New liner, ship-operating, and crewing services saw Bertling continue to grow with expansion to the Americas, Asia, and India. Bertling had turned into a global player in the forwarding industry. Today our 50 Bertling offices worldwide are staffed by skilled chartering brokers, operators, engineers, naval architects, and logistics experts. In 2003, Bertling EDI Service & IT GmbH - Bertling's own IT company, BESITEC, was established to serve the increasing demand for technical solutions in the forwarding business.

The legacy of the traditions and ethics established by its founder over 158 years ago still remains essential cornerstones of Bertling's philosophy today and in the future. Bertling strives to become the leader in the forwarding industry by setting benchmarks in the shipping, logistics, and IT industries. This ambition is demonstrated by considerable investment in systems, technology, highly qualified personnel, and new offices, vessels, and transportation equipment.

Historical Gallery - 150 Years of Bertling


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