In 2021 DS Norden celebrated its 150 years anniversary. In this book Martin Jes Iversen is analyzing the history of the shipping company which is one of the oldest in Denmark. In the first 50 years after being founded in 1871, Norden was a pioneer firm in Danish shipping. This period was followed by five decades of financial stability and gradual stagnation. But in the early 1990s the firm started its journey to become one of the leading firms in the global dry-bulk market. As the world experienced technological, economical and political changes, Norden would also change. Some of these changes were incremental. Others were more abrupt. But they were never predictable.
This article analyzes the competitive strategies of Odense Steel Shipyard between 1918 and 2012 and challenges existing scholarship on competition in global industries. Until the 1980s, the yard adopted typical strategies in shipbuilding, starting with cost leadership and subsequently adopting global segmentation and differentiation strategies. From the mid-1980s, however, it successfully followed a unique national responsiveness strategy, which scholars including Dong Sung Cho and Michael E. Porter had ruled out in shipbuilding. The article shows how shipyard owners shaped strategies and influenced competitiveness.