Gas Lion: The first Clyde-built gas carrier and a micocosm of Norwegian shipping
This article, based on primary sources in Norway and Scotland, tells the history of Gas Lion, the first gas tanker built on the Clyde. The ship was delivered in 1968 from Scotts’ of Greenock to Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Skipsrederi (KGJS), a newly established shipping company from Bergen, Norway. In addition to the history of the ship per se, the article addresses two additional issues. First, the analysis of the ownership and financing of the vessel provides an example of how small Norwegian shipping companies organized their funding in the late 1960s. This analysis also includes an example of how inflation and exchange rate movements drastically changed the basis for shipping investments in the 1960s and 1970s. Second, the subsequent fates of the investors that provided the equity in the venture illustrate the many and varied fortunes of Norwegian shipping companies in the last decades of the twentieth century, encompassing successes, failures and several varieties in between. Specifically the Gas Lion was the first ship managed by KGJS, which 40 years later had become one of Norway’s largest shipping companies, with an international leadership position in three market segments.