From three to three hundred workers in 50 years
In 1967, Ulstein Mek Verksted celebrated 50 years. This was thoroughly mentioned in the local and regional newspapers. Ulstein Mek. had around 600 employees in the mechanical industry in the local municipality, in which the total population counted less than 4,000.
The newspaper 'Sunnmøre Arbeiderblad' summarised the ten years 1957-1967: "There has been a tremendous development at Ulstein Mek. Verksted. Since the beginning, repair and conversion have been the most important work areas for the workshop, but in recent years, newbuilds have started to dominate. At the same time, other production – such as propeller production - has become equally important. Over time, the obstacles have always been: To obtain sufficient working staff – and the demand for ever-increasing investments. "
In 1967, Magnulf Ulstein was manager. Inga Ulstein was Chair of the Board, a role she stepped into upon her husband, Martin’s, sudden death in 1948.
The newspaper 'Vikebladet' commented:
"There was a time when the fishing collapsed, but there was no decline. The fishermen managed to adjust and find new opportunities. More remarkable is that the mechanical industry managed to adjust to new markets and also entered into unbelievable growth. What has happened in the local mechanical industrial development in the last years?”
Magnulf replied: «Some companies started to build fishing vessels for Iceland and the Faroes. We focused on constructing car ferries and other smaller, specialised steel vessels. In 1962 we started on the task of converting the ferry "Romsdal" to "Grand Bahama", which led to a major expansion of people. One year after, we were assigned the most interesting assignment of constructing the passenger vessel "Poseidon", and we expanded into other types of vessels.
Magnulf added that the municipality has been willing to assist with housing construction, and many people who moved to this area ended up getting their own homes and made a life here. "We can probably see it as a sign that the municipality of Ulstein not only has available jobs but is a place to settle down," he concluded.