Kristian Gerhard Jebsen

Kristian Gerhard Jebsen (1927-2004) founded the Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Skipsrederi AS (KGJS) shipping company in 1967. The following year, he took the initiative to establish the international Gearbulk Ltd shipping pool, with his company as one of four partners.

Jebsen’s unique knowledge of international shipping, combined with his visionary talents, great capacity for work and ability to motivate and lead, allowed him to build up a business which ranks today as a world leader in its fields. 

The shipowner and the establishment of the business 

Kristian Gerhard Jebsen is remembered as a distinctive and innovative player in the development of the shipping industry from the 1950s and until his death in London in 2004.

Born in Bergen on 23 January 1927, he graduated from high school in 1944. After Norway was liberated from German occupation in 1945, he worked for a period with the United Maritime Authority (Nortraship) in London.

From there, he moved to New York in 1946 to study at Columbia University and graduated two years later with a BA in business administration.

Jebsen worked as a shipbroker in New York, Paris and London until he joined the family shipping company, Kristian Jebsens Rederi AS, in 1953. He made a major contribution to its modernisation, and played a key role in the development of bulk carriers.

After starting on his own in 1967 with KGJS, he built up a worldwide business which today includes the ownership and operation of 110 ships.

KGJS remains a family-owned company, and currently embraces the following activities: SKS OBO & Tankers, KGJ Cement and KGJS Ship Management.

In addition, the family is the majority shareholder in Gearbulk Holding Ltd, with Japan’s Mitsui-OSK Lines as its partner and co-shareholder.
The KGJ group’s investment activities outside shipping are handled by Jebsen Asset Management.

The establishment of the foundation in the honor of Kristian Gerhard Jebsen’s memory

Jebsen’s family has wished to honour his memory and his contribution to Norwegian and international shipping and business.
Accordingly, Aud Jebsen took the initiative in 2009 to create Stiftelsen Kristian Gerhard Jebsen, which she established together with her three sons.

The foundation’s capital will permit substantial donations to various purposes as specified in the foundation’s objectives.


A sister foundation, independent of Stiftelsen Kristian Gerhard Jebsen, is established in Switzerland. The Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Foundation is intended “enhance the well-being of people and promote human and social development, through support of grantees in the areas of health, education, science, culture and environment, in Switzerland and abroad.”