The traditional Rickmers Shipyard in Bremerhaven (formerly Geestemünde) could trace its history back to as early as 1836. In the 1960s, the site on the River Geeste, in use since 1857, had become too small. A new area for expansion was needed. In 1966, the owner Bertram Rickmers (1917-1971) envisaged first alternatives; one year later a site in the fishery port area was leased, and repair activities started there in 1968.
But in the long term, Bertram Rickmers planned to transfer most of the production to the new location. In 1970, outfitting was transferred; a floating dock began operation there in 1972. About four fifths of the whole staff worked in the fishery port area in 1984, only steelwork construction was done on the Geeste. Before the shipyard had to close in 1986 because of the general economic slump, it had produced mainly container vessels.
But the traditional name Rickmers did not vanish completely from Bremerhaven marine industry. A dock and repair yard (Rickmers Lloyd Dockbetrieb GmbH & Co. KG) is still active in the Kaiserhafen area. It was established in 1972 as a joint venture of the then Bremer Vulkan shipyard and the Rickmers Company. Since 1988, it has been owned by Lloyd shipyard. A floating dock with a lifting capacity of 7200 tons is also in operation there.