Ultramar was founded in Chile in 1952 by Captain Albert von Appen as a shipping agency company, initially focusing on providing agency and logistical support services to foreign shipping companies. Captain von Appen was subsequently joined by his two sons, Sven von Appen and Wolf von Appen, who successfully developed and diversified the group into other shipping related activities and expanded them into Argentina, Peru, Uruguay, Brazil, Ecuador, Colombia, and Panama – and in more recent times into Europe and the U.S.
The group is a major operator of port terminals and has undertakings in industrial activities including mining, sulphoric acid production, etc.
Harbour towage and other specialized marine services are managed by Ultratug, who today operates over 70 vessels covering harbour and deep sea towage, salvage activities, off-shore drilling and production support in a number of locations throughout 7 countries in South America.
Deep sea shipping activities are managed by Ultranav who today operates over 200 vessels, being one third, owned vessels. The deep sea fleet includes panamax and aframax tankers, MR refined products and chemicals carriers, handysize, supramax and panamax dry cargo bulk carriers, multi-purpose dry cargo vessels, and specialized vessels for the transport of liquified gases. In this last segment, it is important to mention Ultragas ApS, which today operates more than 20 specialized gas carriers in international trading and which are of various types and sizes ranging from 3.500 to 20.700 cbm cargo capacity.
Ultramar has expanded its activities from shipping agency to logistics, container terminals, port terminals, etc. and expanded its coverage in America from Chile to the U.S.
The ability to - jointly with clients – identify and develop new and efficient transport and logistics solutions has been key to the expansion of the group.
The group is today managed by the third generation of Von Appen family and jointly headed by Dag von Appen and Richard von Appen.