The origin of BW LPG dates back to 1935 when Mr. Sigval Bergesen d.y. established Sig. Bergesen d.y. & Co, a tanker business in Stavanger, Norway. After World War II, the fleet and business rapidly expanded with the delivery of a series of increasingly larger tanker vessels and establishment of, close relations with major oil companies. In 1967, Sigval Bergesen d.y. entered the dry bulk business by taking over the business that his son, Mr. Berge Sigval Bergesen, started ten years earlier. By the 1970s, the company had grown to be one of the largest ship owning groups in the world.
In 1978, Sig. Bergesen d.y. & Co entered the gas transportation business with the acquisition of six Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) vessels. By then his grandsons, Mr. Petter C.G. Sundt and Mr. Morten Sig. Bergesen, had taken over the daily management of the business. Under their leadership, the company grew in the 1980s to become a major operator of large LPG carriers.
In 1986, Bergesen d.y. ASA (“Bergesen”) became the holding company of the family’s various shipping businesses, and had its shares listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange. Two years later, its shares were also listed on the London Stock Exchange.
In 1995, Bergesen acquired the shares of and merged with Havtor ASA, a shipping company focused on marine gas transportation. The Bergesen fleet as a result numbered over 100 vessels and Bergesen became a market leader for crude oil, dry bulk and gas transportation.
In 1999, Bergesen revised its strategy and decided to reduce its exposure to the volatile tanker sector in favour of growing in two new shipping markets, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and offshore services, where it expected better and more stable returns. Bergesen’s LNG venture started in 2000 with the ordering of three newbuildings that were subsequently chartered to Suez Energy International NA and Sonatrach SA. In 2002, the LNG business grew substantially when the company was awarded contracts to charter four LNG vessels to Nigeria LNG Limited. In 2004, Nigeria LNG Limited awarded a contract for a further four LNG vessels to subsidiaries of BW Group Limited.
In April 2003, Sohmen family interests acquired a majority of the shares of Bergesen and, subsequently, launched a public offer through World Nordic APS for the remaining shares. Bergesen’s shares were delisted from the Oslo Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange in July 2003. Bergensen together with the Sohmen family’s World-Wide Shipping were reorganized to form Bergesen Worldwide in 2004, and in 2005 it was listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange under the name Bergesen Worldwide Gas ASA.
In 2007, Bergesen Worldwide Gas ASA was renamed BW Gas ASA as part of a re-branding exercise of the BW Group. Together, the BW Group of companies is a leading global maritime group involved in oil and gas transportation, floating gas infrastructure, environmental technologies and deepwater production. BW Group has a combined fleet of over 130 vessels which includes Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs), refined oil tankers, chemical tankers, LNG and LPG carriers, and floating production storage and offloading (FPSO) units.