|Traded as||TYO: 9107|
|Headquarters||Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan|
|Subsidiaries||International Transportation Service|
- This article refers to a Japanese shipping company. For other meanings, see K-line (disambiguation).
Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. (川崎汽船株式会社 Kawasaki Kisen Kabushiki-gaisha?), also referred to as "K" Line, is one of the largest Japanese transportation companies. It owns and/or controls large cargo ships, including dry cargo ships (bulk carriers), container ships, container terminals, liquefied natural gas carriers, ro-ro ships and tankers.
It is the sixteenth largest container transportation and shipping company in the world.
"K" Line (named after three K initials) was formed when Kojiro Matsukata placed Kawasaki Kisen, Kawasaki Zosen and Kokusai Kisen under joint management to build a stronger fleet of 40 to 50 ships serving the Atlantic, North and South America, Africa and the Mediterranean and Baltic Seas. According to Lloyds, the newly established "K" Line was ranked 13th in the world in 1926, behind NYK (9th) but ahead of O.S.K. (14th).
By the end of World War II, Kawasaki Kisen had lost 56 vessels; 12 survived.
During that vital recovery period, "K" Line steadily returned to the building and operation of ships, reestablished bases of operation around the world, increased earnings and took other steps to restore corporate strength and vibrancy.
After the merger with Iino Kisen, "K" Line was newly capitalized at ¥9 billion and controlled a fleet of 104 ships, 55 of which were also owned by "K" Line. The merger gave "K" Line a solid foundation to advance dynamically into the future both as one of the world's largest shipping lines in terms of fleet size and as a well-balanced, integrated organization.
K Line Offshore AS was founded in Arendal, Norway in October 2007 as a subsidiary of K Line to provide offshore support services to oil and gas fields. They have commissioned new ships suitable for oil and gas fields in ultra-deep water, harsh environments and/or remote areas. They operate the following ships:
- KL Arendalfjord - Delivered 24 October 2008
- KL Brevikfjord - Delivered 24 September 2010
- KL Sandefjord - Delivered 7 January 2011
- KL Brisfjord - Delivered 13 January 2011
- KL Brofjord - Delivered 5 April 2011
- KL Saltfjord - Delivered 14 April 2011
- KL Barentsfjord - Delivered 28 June 2011
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10 Ships to be manned by Filipinos
On September 30, 2007, Shuichiro Maeda, K-Line president, said the company will build 10 cargo ships to be manned by an all-Filipino officers and crew. The vessels are expected to be finished by 2010. It will employ 7,000 Filipinos in the next 4 years (3, 330 officers and 3, 600 ratings or crew). K-Line will build the K-Line Maritime Academy-Philippines operational in February 2008 and is intended to train at least 10,000 seafarers a year.
- "K" Line Air Service, Ltd. changed name into "K" Line Logistics, Ltd.
- "K" Line Travel, Ltd.
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