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200 years of F. Laeisz: A traditional Hamburg company celebrates

Caption: Former Federal President Joachim Gauck (right) celebrated together with Nikolaus H. (left) and Nikolaus W. Schües (center)

What better place to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the F. Laeisz shipping company than Hamburg’s Laeiszhalle?

On March 23, more than 1,000 guests gathered in the concert hall donated by Carl Heinrich and his wife Sophie Laeisz. Numerous prominent representatives from the shipping industry, politics and culture accepted the shipping company’s invitation to the traditional concert hall.

The festive program was appropriately chosen for the venue, with classical music pieces by Ludwig van Beethoven and Johann Strauss. A very special highlight was a piece of music composed especially for the evening by Sean Shepherd, which celebrated its world premiere that evening.

Gauck and Laeisz have a long history together

The keynote speakers, such as Joachim Gauck, were also special. The former German President has a long history with the shipping company. As Gauck reported, he played with a cap with the F. Laeisz company logo sewn onto it as a child. This cap belonged to his father, who went to sea as a ship’s officer for the shipping company before the Second World War.

Keynote speaker Antje Boetius, Professor and Director of the Alfred Wegener Institute, also has a personal connection to the traditional Hamburg-based company. As she explained in her speech, her grandfather went to sea on the Flying-P-Liner “Peking”. She personally has a relationship with the shipping company through the research vessel “Polarstern”, which is part of the Laeisz fleet. The ship made headlines in 2019/2020 when it took part in the MOCAiC expedition. The ship was frozen in the ice and drifted in the Artis for a year. Among other things, data on climate change was collected during the research trip.

“He’s doing a very good job”

The hosts, Nikolaus W. and Nikolaus H. Schües, also addressed the numerous guests. Both expressly thanked all employees. The father had special praise for his son: “He’s doing a very good job,” said Nikolaus W. Schües, which was confirmed with a big round of applause. In his speech, his son Nikolaus H. also revealed how to do this job well: “To be happy in shipping, you have to love what you do.”

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