THE development of New York as a port of paramount importance to the world's commerce has been greatly accelerated by the services of men of long experience who head important business firms and companies allied to the shipping interest. Among these one holding high place in the good opinion of the shipping world is Vidkunn Johnsen, president of V. Johnsen Co., Inc., ship and steamship brokers, with offices at 25 Beaver Street, and who is also identified with a large shipbuilding interest.
Mr. Johnsen was born in Bergen, Norway, June 18, 1883, and was graduated from the college of that city in 1898. In 1899 he entered the office of the firm of Kjaer & Isdahl, at Bergen, serving there as chartering clerk for ten years. In February, 1909, he came to New York and was associated with one of the leading firms of ship brokerage in this city, and in that connection he became thoroughly familiar with port practices and shipping conditions in New York. In July, 1915, he became associated with Christoffer Hannevig in the organization of the firm of Hannevig &
Johnsen, which engaged in business as ship and steamship brokers, with offices in the Maritime Exchange Building at 80 Broad Street. The business grew rapidly, and larger quarters were secured at 25 Beaver Street. Mr. Hannevig retired from the firm in April, 1917, and Mr. John- sen continued under the style of V. Johnsen Co., Inc., of which he has since been president.
As ship and steamship brokers this firm has a place among the leaders at this port. It buys and sells ships, and charters all kinds of seagoing vessels for any point in the world. He has been one of the most notable figures in the pioneer work of placing orders for steamers with American shipbuilders for foreign account. Alert, energetic, able, and experienced, he has built up a most valuable clientele among the shipping men of the ports of America. He has the enviable record of selling sixty per cent, of all the tonnage contracted for in this country and Canada by Norwegian
owners. In addition to his position as the head of V. Johnsen Co., Inc., Mr. Johnsen is also half owner and fills the office of president of the Delaware Shipbuilding Company, with yards and ways located at Seaford, Delaware.
Having made a success of the shipping business during the period when it was subject to all kinds of obstacles and restrictions, Mr. Johnsen has been all the more ready to take hold of the expanded business coming to him in steadily increasing volume since restrictions have been removed.
Mr. Johnsen is also the president of the Marine Boiler Improvement Company, a company recently organized by him, which promises to revolutionize the Scotch type marine boiler market. It is the owner of a patent, an apparatus for Improving water circulation in marine boilers, reduce coal consumption, repairs, etc., and enable vessels to get up steam in less than half the time that is now required.
The success Mr. Johnsen built up during the stress of war restrictions is being greatly improved now those obstacles are removed.