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Our story


A long history of engineering innovation

During the 1920s, concerned over unnecessary losses of North Sea colliers, engineer brothers Robert and Joseph MacGregor developed the first steel hatch cover. Deceptively simple, the design consisted of five articulated leaves that stowed neatly at the end of each hatch. Patented in 1929, this ground-breaking concept improved ship and cargo safety and changed the face of cargo care for ever.


In 1937, to promote and sell these steel hatch covers, Robert and Joseph formed MacGregor & Company in Whitley Bay on the north-east coast of England. This was the actual beginning of the MacGregor story.

Going further, the marine cargo business of the company in a broader meaning started in 1983 when MacGregor merged with the Finnish Navire. The new company was named MacGregor-Navire.

In 1992, the company acquired the world leading container lashing manufacturer, Conver-OSR and its product portfolio.

A year later, Incentive acquired MacGregor-Navire and merged it with Hägglunds Marine - the Swedish crane specialist. In 1998, the majority of MacGregor was sold to Industri Kapital.

In 2005, Cargotec bought MacGregor International AB, the global marine cargo flow solutions provider, to strengthen the company’s cargo handling offering. Also in 2005, MacGregor’s lashing design knowledge was further strengthened with the acquisition of the Swedish company Allset Marine Lashing.

In 2007 MacGregor expanded into new segments through acquisitions like the Norwegian company Hydramarine, which specialises in offshore and subsea load handling systems, and Plimsoll Corporation Pte Ltd. Plimsoll, based in Singapore, offers deck machinery for offshore oil and gas operators as well as for the marine industry in the Asia-Pacific region.

MacGregor celebrated its 75th anniversary in 2012. Read more about the anniversary here.

The Asian market has grown in importance for MacGregor business. MacGregor’s presence in Asia is continuously enhanced with actions such as the new offshore equipment factory for MacGregor equipment in Tianjin, China, which was opened in 2008, and the establishing of a new joint venture company in China with Jiangsu Rainbow Heavy Industries (RHI), Rainbow-Cargotec Industries Co Ltd (RCI) in 2012.

In 2013, MacGregor made two strategic acquisitions. In October, MacGregor acquired Hatlapa to strengthen its position in the merchant ship segment with a product portfolio including a wide range of deck machinery. Included in the Hatlapa acquisition, Triplex branded equipment became part of MacGregor’s offering. The acquisition of the mooring and loading systems unit from Aker Solutions widened MacGregor’s offshore offering to Pusnes mooring equipment and loading and offloading systems, Porsgrunn deck machinery for the global offshore and shipping markets, as well as Woodfield branded marine loading arms for onshore loading customers. The acquisition was completed in January 2014.

Hatlapa brand celebrated its 95th anniversary in November 2014.

History of Pusnes brand


Cargotec’s MacGregor business area is the world’s leader in engineering solutions and services for handling marine cargoes and offshore loads.