Our story

The Damen Shipyards Group is a shipbuilder like no other. Headquartered in the Netherlands with 36 ship and repair yards all over the world, Damen employs over 12,000 people delivering innovative, sustainable maritime solutions spanning the entire lifecycle of a ship, from design and construction to repair and conversion, for all sectors of the industry.

Our story begins in 1927 with brothers Jan and Rien Damen opening a small shipyard on the River Merwede in the Dutch town of Hardinxveld. The brothers ran a small, yet prosperous yard until, in 1969, Jan’s son, Kommer Damen, took the helm. Kommer brought with him an idea, based on the needs of his customers, that was to revolutionise not only the family business, but shipbuilding itself.

His idea would become known as the Damen Standard – the series construction of stock vessels, ensuring fast delivery of proven technology. It was the foundation of Damen’s international story of success.

Standardisation also paved the way for a unique, Damen approach to research and development. R&D conducted over successive generations of series vessels has made for continual product evolution and placed Damen in pole position to lead the maritime industry in its quest for innovation.

Today, this continues with Damen, and its industry partners, applying this spirit of innovation towards the develop of sustainable maritime solutions. Solutions that will secure the future of Damen, the maritime industry and the environment in which we all live and work.

Highlights of Damen

1940: Yard number number 100

1969: Kommer Damen Introduces standardised shipbuilding

2000: Damen and TU Delft launch the Axe Bow

Now: Damen builds and maintains ships for all sectors of the maritime industry at 36 yards located all over the world

What Damen Innovations is all about?

At Damen, innovation is not just something we say, it’s something we do. Daily. It’s part of our culture – and has been from the start. The very concept of standardised shipbuilding for which Damen is so renowned is only one example. We are constantly working towards the maritime world of tomorrow; looking into such things as autonomous ships, data collection and the 3D printing of marine components. To us, though, innovation is not only about the future, it’s also about improving the way we do things in the here and now, designing and building ships that are more efficient, safer and, of course, more sustainable.


Young Damen is a fun social platform for Damen’s younger employees. At Damen we value a good work atmosphere and, therefore, we provide a network for young people to interact with each other and have fun outside and inside the work environment.

Think sailing trips, visits to Damen yards, professional presentations or just having a beer together at our Damen Drinks. Young Damen provides the possibility for you to grow a strong network and develop your potential to the fullest. See you at our next event!