EcoClipper buys first sailing cargo ship

The Netherlands-based sustainable shipping company EcoClipper has purchased ‘De Tukker’, a retrofit vessel, with an aim to establish sustainable shipping on the North Sea.

Original Picture of De Tukker ex-Harle Tief after launch in 1912 on Nieuwe Waterweg near Maassluis. Source: EcoClipper

On 20 January 2022, the company revealed that Jorne Langelaan, CEO and founder of EcoClipper, signed ownership documents for the Dutch Klipper.

As informed, De Tukker is the first vessel to join the EcoClipper fleet.

The vessel will require a retrofit and will begin providing trade and passenger travel under sail on the North Sea in the first half of 2022.

De Tukker was built in 1912 and worked for many years as a coastal trader. In the 1980’s it became a Dutch sail training vessel, well-known for its work with disadvantaged youth. The need for major repairs brought this to an end in 2012.

With this purchase, EcoClipper will return De Tukker to North Sea trade. The Klipper will be the first in a proposed fleet of EcoClipper vessels which will include retrofit and purpose-built sailing ships trading on a range of routes.

The retrofit will bring De Tukker back up to commercial standard. Work on the hull needs to be carried out, a new deckhouse will be constructed and upgrading of the systems and rigging will take place.

The ship has a barge shaped hull and will be able to carry about 80 cubic meters, or an equivalent of 50-70 tonnes, of cargo. It will also have accommodation for up to 12 paying guests. While sailing vessels do operate on the North Sea, there are no vessels currently dedicated to a fixed liner service for sustainable shipping on this route.

“We have already been approached by a wide range of companies looking to ship their product in a sustainable manner. With this purchase, EcoClipper will be in a good position to begin providing this service in an environmentally friendly way,” Langelaan said.

“Altogether, De Tukker should be an excellent ship to start putting the operational vision of EcoClipper into practice.”

EcoClipper recently launched a financing campaign where investors are able to invest in the EcoClipper Coöperatie U.A. This enables investors to become part owners of the fleet of sailing ships, including the Tukker. 

Last year, EcoClipper presented its strategy to establish a fleet of EcoClipper500 ships as well as retrofit units. By building deep-sea clipper ships and transforming existing vessels into sailing cargo ships, EcoClipper wants to supply solutions to the growing demand and encourage awareness of the sail cargo industry.

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