Charles Evans and Stephen Reid set up the company in 1930 and purchased their first ships in 1932. They traded worldwide throughout the depression and took full advantage of the government "scrap and build" subsidy scheme by buying obsolete ships and ordering new vessels. At the outbreak of WWII the company managed six ships but lost five to enemy action. Four ships were managed for MOWT and a Liberty ship was purchased in 1944. In 1949 the company merged with Evan Thomas Radcliffe & Co.
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