Over 165 Years of Company History
The company was founded as „Maschinenbauanstalt und Schiffswerft“ in Rostock 1850. A great number of craftsmen from Rostock were employed and the engineer Albrecht Tischbein joined the company as a mechanical engineering expert.
The St. Petersburger See- und Dampfschiffahrts AG from Rostock placed an order for two iron propeller-driven steamships with NEPTUN. Already one year later, the first of these ships, the "Erbgroßherzog Friedrich Franz", was launched. The two propeller-driven steamships were meant for the regular service between Rostock and St. Petersburg.
Albert Tischbein’s shipyard was sold in 1872 and became the Hansa-Werft. In the meantime, the shipyard was founded in 1866 by Witte & Abendroth. The Rostocker Actien-Gesellschaft für Schiffs- und Maschinenbau developed from this shipyard in 1870. From the merger of these two original companies originated the Actien-Gesellschaft NEPTUN, Schiffswerft und Maschinenfabrik in 1890.
Over the decades and especially in the first 30 years of the 20th century, a lot of crises were successfully managed. The First World War and the high inflation in the 20s are only two examples for the difficult framework conditions.
After 1945 and the German division, the East German shipyards concentrated on the markets of the Eastern bloc. The VEB NEPTUN WERFT was among the successful state shipyards of the former GDR. Due to the changing conditions of international competition following the German reunification, the shipyard’s capacities were newly defined by the EU and the VEB NEPTUN WERFT was closed as a location. Restructurings resulting from the cessation of shipbuilding in 1991 characterized the following years.
After taking up ship newbuilding, the company was renamed to Neptun Industrie Rostock (NIR). With the integration in the Vulkan Group in Bremen, many people hoped for a new, successful era – unfortunately in vain. The company concentrated on the repair and upgrading of ships, the delivery of ship components, steel constructions for hydraulic engineering and the establishment of RoRo-ships.
In 1997 NIR became part of the MEYER Group, which also includes MEYER WERFT in Papenburg. Many companies formerly belonging to NIR and dealing in different sectors were sold, or set up independent operations. With this step, the shipbuilders from Rostock-Warnemünde concentrated on the construction of river cruise ships. Since 2000, new ships once more leave the shipyard in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. The construction of river cruise ships meanwhile belongs to the shipyard’s essential program.
The company has been operating under the name NEPTUN WERFT once more since March 2006 and is to date with approximately 500 employees successfully operating in the river cruise ship market. Besides, the shipyard builds floating engine room units for the cruise ships of MEYER WERFT in Papenburg, Germany and MEYER TURKU in Turku, Finland.