The history of the Gdańsk Shipyard dates back to 1844 to the establishment of the Royal Corvette Construction Plant. 27 years later, the Shipyard was taken over by Prussia and its name was changed to KaiserlicheWerft. In 1890, a second plant, Schichau-Werft (the Schichau Shipyard), was built next to the Shipyard. The new company built cargo ships, passenger and cargo ships, passenger ships and warships. During World War II, both shipyards worked for the German Kriegsmarine.
After the war, the Gdańsk shipyards were for the most part destroyed. After their merger, a new name was adopted: “Stocznia Gdańska” (Gdańsk Shipyard). The first vessel, the “Sołdek” collier, was launched on November 6, 1948 under a commission from the Polish Steam Navigation Administration. Two years later, the Shipyard fulfilled its first export order, namely the “Pervomaysk” collier for the
Russian ship owner Sudoimport. For a number of years, the Shipyard built ships for the Soviet Union and ship owners from across the world.
In 1967, the company’s name was changed to Stocznia Gdańska im. Lenina (Lenin Shipyard of Gdańsk).
As a result of privatization, the company was transformed into a joint stock company in 1990. The State Treasury held 61% of the company’s stock and the remaining 39% was in the hands of Shipyard employees. At the same time, the company’s name was changed to Stocznia Gdańska SA.
The new political and economic situation was not easy for the Shipyard. Due to the growing debt and insolvency in relation to contractors, in 1996 the Shareholder Meeting declared the company bankrupt. Following the declaration of bankruptcy, even though a number of seasoned employees left the company, shipbuilding did not cease. In 1998, the bankruptcy trustee sold the fully operational plant to Trójmiejska Korporacja Stoczniowa (Tri-City Shipyard Corporation) owned by Stocznia Gdynia SA and the real estate developer EVIP Progress. Stocznia Gdańska – Grupa Stoczni Gdynia SA (Gdańsk Shipyard – Gdynia Shipyard Group) was established on the basis of these assets.
In August 2006, the Gdańsk Shipyard was formally spun off from the Gdynia Shipyard Group by changing its ownership structure, articles of association and name. The Shipyard was renamed to its current name of Stocznia Gdańsk SA. A year later, in November 2007, the Shipyard was privatized by the Ukrainian company ISD Polska through an acquisition of shares and a capital increase. Since 2008, the main shareholder of Stocznia Gdańsk SA is the Gdańsk Shipyard Group owned by the Ukrainian industrialist Serhiy Taruta. 25% of the company’s stock is held by the Industrial Development Agency of the State Treasury.
The new main shareholder purchased a stake in the Shipyard burdened with numerous past liabilities, including public aid that was granted without the consent of the European Commission after 2004. The amount of this aid was revealed already after the privatization in 2008 and caused a crisis ending with the adoption of a restructuring plan approved by the European Commission.
The implementation of the plan is still in progress. The Shipyard has been largely modernized. Supported by its main shareholder, the Shipyard survived the financial crisis and the downturn in the shipbuilding industry. It has regained the ability to develop and is closely cooperating with other companies in the industry and with the Industrial Development Agency. Currently, the Shipyard operates a group of companies for which the parent undertaking is the Gdańsk Shipyard Group.
Since the beginning of 2015, the group has been increasing its headcount, has a portfolio of orders and has been generating better financial results.