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Greece: House flags of shipping companies

Last modified: 2018-02-20 by ivan sache
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A short presentation of the Greek maritime tradition

The extraordinary success of Greek merchant shipping is recounted in Ploto, published by the Greek Literary and Historical Archive (ELIA), a moving and aesthetically pleasing investigation into family and local historical archives. Ploto - named after one of the Nereids - documents Greek ship captains and owners from 1770 to World War II. The book, which includes texts by Tzelina Harlafti, Manos Haritatos and Eleni Beneki, represents the culmination of a six-year research project which ELIA conducted under the sponsorship of the Stavros S. Niarchos Foundation. Another product of the same project was the publication Pontoporeia, which documented the Greek-owned merchant fleet. The latter was the starting point, the data bank which generated Ploto, and which will eventually give life to Efpombi, recording the performance of shipowning families since 1950.
Ploto is crammed with useful information and fine photographs highlighting people's connection with the sea, based on the seagoing families of each region. The result is something like a family atlas of the Greek contribution to global shipping and transport. It is a touching appraisal of legendary maritime families, each of which quietly and painstakingly built up a substantial part of the nation's wealth. As the researchers explain, Ploto is more than a biographical dictionary, and it fits in with a growing trend toward studying enterprises. Shipping, with its emphasis on family capitalism rather than an impersonal global capitalism that separates ownership from management, retains certain kinds of commercial and economic relations which go back more than 200 years.

Greek merchant shipping was born in the 18th century and developed rapidly in the following century when the growth of material wealth created new markets. Before the creation of an independent Greek state, Greek mariners worked a single expanse of water that stretched from the Black Sea to the North Sea and the Mediterranean, dotted with Greek-owned sailing ships. It could be said that the overtures made by Greek sailors and captains to the West in the 1770s were a motive force in strengthening the ties of Greeks with European ways and spreading ideas of equality before the law and social justice.
The rapid progress of Greek shipping helped contribute to the national idea. Later on, in the 20th century, it contributed in large measure to national pride and economic development in Greece. Even the mansions in many Greek harbors, now a part of the national heritage, were contributed to by mariners who had encountered the prosperity of the West.
Straddling the north-south and east-west sea routes, Greeks occupied a privileged position from 1850 onward, when the Ottoman Empire was disintegrating and the era of free trade and laissez-faire capitalism was emerging. The transition from sail to steam, from 1880 on, furnished another opportunity for Greek trade to go global.

Some of the shipping families whose international activities helped build the national economy:
Athanassoulis, Ambatielos, Vallianos, Lykiardopoulos, Metaxas, Potamianos, Svoronos, Fokas (Cephalonia).
Vlassopoulos, Theofilatos, Stathatos (Ithaca).
Parapetrou, Tsipouras (Galaxidi).
Valmas, Goulandris, Embirikos, Kambanis, Kydonieios, Palaiokrassas, Polemis, Hadoulis (Andros).
Damoulakis, Malandrakis, Syrmalienos (Milos).
Ambanopoulos, Dracopoulos, Mavrogenis, Batis (Mikonos).
Alafouzos, Dakoronoias, Zannos, Manolessos, Nomikos, Sarris, Sigalas (Thira).
Vernicos (Sifnos).
Vafiadakis, Kalvokoresis, Mavrogordatos, Negropontis, Foustanos (Syros).
Dromokaitis, Rallis, Rodokanakis, Skaramangas, Skylitsis, Andreadis, Georgantis, Carras, Livanos, Los, Fafalios, Chandris (Chios).
Laimos, Pateras, Francou, Hadzipateras (Oinousses).
Varvakis, Kalafatis, Kalimeris, Kotzias, Filinis, Hadzikyriakos (Psara).
Kiourtzis, Sifnaios (Lesbos).
Inglesis (Samos).
Arvanitidis, Zarifis, Kavounidis, Sideridis, Foscolos-Mangos (Istanbul - Dardanelles).
Eusthathiou, Papayiannis, Onassis (Smyrna and Asia Minor).
Emiris, Kouloukountis, Mavroleon, Nicolaou, Hadzilias (Patmos).
Roussos (Leros).
Valsamakis, Garyfalos, Rembakis, Siskos (Skopelos).
Yiakoumis, Damaskos, Kokkinos, Koumbis, Mataronas (Skiathos).
Miaoulis, Koulouras, Kountouriotis, Kriezis, Sachtouris, Tombazis, Tsamados (Hydra).
Anargyris, Goudis, Koutsis, Lazaros-Orlof, Mexis, Botasis (Spetses).
Hadzipanayioti-Politis (Peloponnese).
Arvanitis, Dedousis, Kammenos, Katsoulis, Bakogiorgis, Economou, Kallimanopoulos, Niarchos (Piraeus).
[Nikos Vatopoulos. The history of Greece - written at sea (Kathimerini, 2002)]

Ivan Sache, 28 December 2005

Index of Greek shipping companies

This list is not a comprehensive list of Belgian shipping companies but only an index of those companies, not necessarily still in business, for which information on their flag is available.

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z |


Adriatic Tankers Shipping Co.
Agapitos Bros.
Alcyon Shipping Co. Ltd.
Anangel Shipping Enterprises S.A. - I. Angelicoussis
Ancora Investement Trust
Anonymi Naftiliakos Eteria Kritis (ANEK)
Anonymi Naftiliakos Eteria Symis (ANES)
Archipelago-American Steamship Co.
Arkadia Lines - K. Moulopoulos
Athenian Sea Carriers Ltd.


Blue Flag Navigation Ltd.


Callitsis Succesrs S.A. (George A.)
Canopus Shipping S.A. - A.G. Kyrtatas
Cardiff Marine Inc.
Carras (Hellas) S.A.
Carras (J.M.)
Celebrity Cruises
Ceres Hellenic Shipping Enterprises Ltd.
Chandris Lines
Chris Marine
Colouthros Ltd.
Comninos Enterprises
Costamare Shipping Co.
Courtsi & Co. (P.M.)
Cyclades Steam Navigation Co.


Daifas Marine Enterprises S.A. (Stavros)
Dalex Shipping Co. S.A.
Diana Shipping Inc.
Dodekanisiaki Anonymos Naftiliaki Eteria (DANE Line)
Dracoulis Ltd.
Dryships Inc.


Elefsis Shipping Agency
Embiricos Lines
Embiricos (M.A.)
Embiricos (S.G.)
Emmanouelides Shipping Enterprises (Cornilios)
Empros Lines Shipping Co. Sp. S.A.
Enterprises Shipping & Trading S.A.
Epirotiki Lines S.A.
Eustathiou & Co. (N.)


Fafalios Shipping S.A.
Fairsky Shipping & Trading S.A.
Fereniki Lines S.A. - Thomas A. Demseris
Flanmare Shipping Inc.
Fragoukadis S.A. (Fragline Ferries)


G.A. Ferries
General Steam Navigation Company of Greece (Greek Line)
Golden Flame Shipping S.A.
Golden Union Shipping Co. S.A.
Good Faith Shipping Co.
Goulandris Brothers
Gratsos S.A. (George D.)
Grecomar Shipping Agency Ltd. - D.N. Leventakis
Greek South America Line Shipping Co. S.A.


Hadjilias (E.E.)
Hadjilias (P.)
Hellenic International Lines
Hellenic Lines
Hellenic Mediterraean Lines Co. Ltd.
Hellenic Seaways
Hellenic Star Shipping Co.
Hellespont Group
Hind Maritime Enterprises S.A.


Inglessis & Fils (D.A.)


Kampakis, Ltd. (Vasilios Ch.)
Karageorgis Lines
Karageorgis S.A.
Michail A. Karageorgis
Klavenis Lines (K Line)
Konkar Shipping Agencies S.A.
Kritikakis Salvage & Towage (Michael K.)
Kronos Maritime Agency S.A.
Kyriakides (N.G.)


L & W Shipping Agency S.A. - A.S. Polemis
Leandros Shipping Co. S.A.
Livanos (M.G.)
Livanos (S.)
Livanos Hellas (S.)
Livanos Maritime Co. (N.G.)
Lydia Mar Shipping Co.


Mandakas (G.)
Maritime Company of Lesvos S.A.
Matsas & Sons Shipping Co. (Loucas)
Matsas Salvage and Towage Maritime Company (Loucas G.)
Mayamar Maritime Enterprises S.A.
Med Sun Lines Ferries Ltd.
Metropolitan Shipping Ltd.
Michalinos Maritime & Commercial Company Ltd.
Minoan Lines Shipping S.A.


National Steam Navigation Company of Greece
Nereus Shipping S.A. - C.M. Lemos
Niarchos Group
Nicolaou & Co.
Nomikos Corp. (Evangelos P.)
Nomikos (Loucas)
Nomikos (Petros M.)


Oceanbulk Maritime S.A.
Olympic Maritime
Onassis Group
Ormos Shipping Co. Ltd.


Pacific & Atlantic Co.
Papadakis (A.G.)
P & P Shipping Co.
Paradise Navigation
Pateras (Diamantis)
Pittas (G.N.)
Pnevmaticos Rethymnis
Polembros Maritime Co. Ltd. - S. Polemis
Prodromos Lines S.A. - G.A. Bodossakis


Remi Maritime Co.
Rethymnis & Kulukundis Ltd.
Rex Shipping Corp. (L.T. Voyazides)
Rigopoulos (B.)
Roussos (N.P.)
Roussos Management Chartering S.A. (Stavros)


Samartzis Maritime Enterprises Co. S.A. (J.P.)
Samos Navigation Co.
Sarlis Container Services
Sea Star Navigation Co.
Seaways Shipping Enterprises Ltd.
Seniossoglou (S.)
Shipping & Tourist Co. of Samos & Ikaria S.A.
Sitinas Enterprises S.A.
Sougerka Maritime Co. Ltd.
Stathatos (Denys A.)
Stathatos (Othon A.)
Sun Lines Cruises


Teo Shipping Corp.
Tomazos Shipping Co. Ltd.
Tsakos Trading & Shipping S.A.


United Shipping & Trading Co. of Greece S.A. - G.P. Goulandris


Vagliano (A.S.)
Valmadis (S.M.)
Varnima Corp. International
Vatis & Co. (J.L.)
Venizelos A.N.E.
Ventouris (A.K.)
Ventouris Ferries / Ventouris Group Enterprises S.A.
Ventouris Sea Lines S.A.
Vernicos (Nicolas E.)


Westwind Africa Line Ltd. - G. Coulamantaros
Worldwide Ocean Chartering S.A.

Hellenic Marine Environment Protection Association (HELMEPA)

[Flag]         [Flag]

Flag and pennant of HELMEPA - Images by Ivan Sache, 20 March 2018

The Hellenic Marine Environment Protection Association (HELMEPA; Ελληνική Ένωση Προστασίας Θαλάσσιου Περιβάλλοντος; website; members' list), established in 1982, is Europe‚Äôs first private sector voluntary marine environment protection association.
HELMEPA's aims are to eliminate ship-generated marine pollution and enhance safety at sea. The Association trains seafarers and executives so that they are aware of safety and the protection of the marine environment". HELMEPA has also launched several environmental projects and public awareness campaigns such as the environmental education of schoolchildren through HELMEPA Junior.
HELMEPA supports governments in ratifying and implementing international conventions on the protection of the marine environment.

The late Greek shipowner George P. Livanos expressed as far back as 1979 his concerns about the pollution of the oceans brought about by ships. He proclaims that "although ship-generated marine pollution is only a component of the total marine pollution problem, it is one that can virtually be eliminated with sufficient care and effort". He believed it was each and every Greek seaman's obligation to lead the worldwide efforts to change the habits of all within the international maritime community.
On 4 June 1982, after several events that took place before which rosed awareness, HELMEPA was founded in Piraeus. The Founding Declaration of Voluntary Commitment "To Save the Seas" (text) and Action Plan were signed by representatives of the Greek Shipowners' Association and the Panhellenic Seamen's Federation (list). The Declaration was co-signed by five organizations that are internationally distinguished for their positive environmental activity: the Club of Rome, the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Nature Resources (IUCN), the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the International Ocean Institute (IOI), and the International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED).
Eventually, one year after HELMEPA is founded, IMO's International Convention, MARPOL 73/78 and its Annex addressing oil pollution prevention enter into force in October 1983.

The flag (photos, photo, photo, photo, photo) and pennant (photos, photos) of HELMEPA are blue with the organization's emblem, in inverted colors.

Clayton Horner & Esteban Rivera, 16 February 2018