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Schulte firms (German Shipping Company)
Last modified: 2017-11-11 by klaus-michael schneider
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Bernhard Schulte GmbH & Co KG – group of companies
Consul Johann Hermann Schulte(1847(?)-1920) and his friend Christoph
Bruns established a ship broker company, named Schulte & Bruns, in
Papenburg in 1883, the predecessor of current Schulte group.
Having different ideas about management the partners separated in 1893
in a friendly way. Bruns stayed in Papenburg, Schulte went to Emden. For
the company S&B had had a good reputation, an agreement was made to
keep the name for both companies but using different colours for the flags:
The company Schulte & Bruns in Papenburg, owner Christoph Bruns,
had a yellow and blue flag since then.
The company Schulte & Bruns in Emden, owner J.H. Schulte, had a
green and red flag since then.
The company in Emden had twelve ships in 1912, transporting timber
across the North Sea and Baltic Sea. In 1914 the first steamship was acquired.
In 1917 the company opened a dockyard in Emden.
Consul Heinrich Schulte(1876-1937) and Johann Schulte(1877-1938).
Heinrich Schulte was mastering the troubles during inflation and economic
crisis in 1923 successfully. In 1930 his company has 16 overseas ships
and numerous inland ships.Branches in Rotterdam, Hamburg and Duisburg were
established. The main business meanwhile was the transport of coal, iron
and steel for the expanding mining companies. Since 1939 the company was
under supervision of NS-government.
Consul Bernhard Schulte(1907-1975) and Hans Heinrich Schulte (*1909)
The company acquired three wrecks from allied occupation forces in
1945. In 1949 the first own ship was bought. In 1950 the company had already
16 overseas ships and 100 inland ships. During the next years Schulte und
Bruns Emden became one of the leading shipping- and shipbuilding companies
In 1955 Consul Bernhard Schulte left the company, founding his own
shipping company, named Bernhard Schulte
The company expanded, pushed by Suez crisis, in 1956. In 1957 13 new
built ships were bought.
Dr.Heinrich Udo Schulte (*1935) and Thomas Schulte (*1939)
By overtaking the company in 1963 Dr.Heinrich Schulte was managing
14 overseas ships. His younger brother Thomas, who joined the company in
1967, built up an “inhouse chartering department”.
In 1968 the first gas tanker was used and the company began to expand
slowly but continuously. In 1971 the Schultes were owner of the bigger
part of the fleet they managed.
Due to high taxes in Germany the company began to transfer parts of
the fleet in 1972 abroad and the Hanseatic Shipping
Co., located in Limassol (Cyprus), was established.
In 1976 the Atlantic Marine Ltd., located in Hamilton (Bahamas), was
In 1976 Ascan Lutteroth, brother in law of the Schultes, joined the
company and became member of the top management in 1980.
In 1981 the company was shaken by a shipping crisis. At that time the
company managed 30 own and more than 100 foreign ships.
In 1985 NAVIGO Shipmanagemant Ltd., located
in Limassol (Cyprus), was established.
In 1987 Thomas Schulte left the company, establishing his own company,
named Thomas Schulte GmbH & Co KG.
In 1988 Bernhard Schulte GmbH & Co KG established two new companies:
the Dorchester Maritime Ltd., located in Douglas
(Isle of Man), probably in order to manage the gas tankers, and the EURASIA
Shipping & Management, located in Hong Kong, which won several awards.
In 1989 Bernhard Schulte GmbH & Co KG is worldwide one of the leading
In 1996 the company bought the Oldenburg-Portugiesische
Dampfschiffs-Reederei (OPDR) from Haniel. In the same year 5 older
tankers were bought and a new branch of conventional tanker shipping was
established. Finally in 2004 branches of petrol- and bulk shipping were
In 2008 the companies Hanseatic, Atlantic, NAVIGO, Dorchester and EURASIA
were united under the umbrella company Bernhard
Source: Klaus-Peter Bühne; translated by Klaus-Michael Schneider.
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 26 Apr 2009
Schulte & Bruns
image by Jorge Candeias, 18 Mar 1999
Schulte & Bruns GmbH & Co. - Gold over blue bicolour
with white lettering outlined in black 'S&B' over all.
Jorge Candeias, 18 Mar 1999
The current company, based Papenburg, would seem to be the second company
of the name as according the Schulte family history the original was wound
after getting into financial difficulties in 1977. This winding up probably
occurred around 1980. The original company began at Papenburg but shifted
to Emden in 1893 when founder Johann Hermann Schulte split from his partner.
The original flag had green over red halves with white letters "S&B"
but the change to the yellow and blue must have happened before the winding
up as the flag is shown by "Flaggen der Binnenschiffahrt" of 1973. This
domiciles the company at Papenburg whereas Lloyds shows Emden, Bremen and
then Hamburg between the 1960s and 1980s so maybe there were two divisions
of the company to explain the 2 flags with the Papenburg branch surviving
to today as Schulte & Bruns GmbH & Co. K.G. Initially I thought
the yellow and blue version may have been peculiar to vessels on inland
waterways but Walter Michels in his "Unvergessene Dampfschiffahrt auf
Rhein und Donau" shows the green & red so there would appear to
be some other background to its use.
Neale Rosanoski, 9 Oct 2004
Schulte & Bruns variant
image by Eugene Ipavec, 11 Jun 2006
This is something of a mystery. Have a look at this
photo, specifically the S&B initialled house flag: We see a horizontally
divided flag, green above red, and large white initials ‘S&B’ over
all. According to the Binnenvaart
site, this one belongs to Schulte & Bruns (‘Emma’), where the above
flag is shown, as a drawing.
Biedekarken agrees: click ‘Schornsteine’
(funnels), then select the first title, ‘Schornsteine mit schwarzer Grundfarbe’
(funnels with black background). S&B is the first on the last
row but two.
So far so good, but FOTW-ws shows a yellow-above-blue house flag, and
so does the company website,
and that includes photos in colour.
As S&B – a venerable firm with an interesting history - has an
inland navigation department it is not impossible that it has, or once
had, a variant house flag. Unfortunately, the evidence is indirect:
drawings on sites known for their knowledge of the subject, but no photos
as far as I could see.
There once was a S&B shipyard, too, but then how to combine this
with running an inland fleet?
Conclusion: no doubt whatsoever about the yellow & blue flag on
FOTW-ws, but insufficient background for the green & red flag even
if it was present at the Bergeshövede festivities.
Jan Mertens, 30 May 2006
image by Jarig Bakker, 6 Nov 2003
Dov Gutterman reported the link
of Bernhard Schulte - Note that the photograph shows a larger disc. Flag:
green with a red disk charged with a white capital S.
Santiago Dotor, 6 Nov 2003
Bernhard Schulte present flag
image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 26 Mar 2009
Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement; Hamburg (current flag)
The flag is blue with a red disc, containing a white capital “S”, in
Source: I spotted an image of this flag at the new home of the company
in Berliner Tor Centre; Hamburg-St.Georg on 24 March 2009.
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 26 Mar 2009
image by Ivan Sache, 18 Mar 2004
The first shipping company owned by the family Schulte was Schulte
& Bruns, founded in Papenburg in 1882. In 1955, the company was
divided into the Reederei Bernhard Schulte,
registered in Hamburg, and Schulte & Bruns, registered in Emden.
In 1988, the Berhnard Schulte company was divided between the two sons
of Bernhard Schulte, Heinrich and Thomas. The Thomas Schulte company operates
today 12 container vessels.
The house flag of the Thomas Schulte company is green with a red square
diamond charged with TS in white.
Source: Company website.
Ivan Sache, 18 Mar 2004
Thomas Schulte banner
image by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 26 Apr 2009
Thomas Schulte GmbH & Co KG
The company is located in Hamburg and not member of Schulte group.
It was established by the younger brother Thomas Schulte as an own company
The ratio is approx 5:2. The red diamond is shifted to the top. The
white capitals “T” and “S” are not connected.
Source: I spotted this flag at Alster Lake in Hamburg on 17 February
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 26 Apr 2009