New film on the East Asiatic Company in the making

26 January 2023

With the support of the Orient Foundation and the EAC Foundation, producers Anette Eggert Frydenberg and Ebbe Kyrø have set off to produce an educational film about the East Asiatic Company entitled, “EAC – the world-class company”.

Denmark has nurtured many entrepreneurs over the years and EAC’s founder, H.N. Andersen, was in a class of his own. He grew up in modest circumstances in the maritime town of Nakskov. Andersen managed to work his way up to become one of the main forces in Danish business. He was a visionary entrepreneur who realised his plan for a worldwide company. His business plan was groundbreaking: the company based its business on an interaction between shipping, trade, and industry. EAC exploited the synergy between the three branches of business.

Although EAC no longer exists as an independent company, the Company has left its lasting mark – partly as the founder of a number of companies that continue to thrive, partly as the birthplace of large Danish companies marketing around the world, and partly in the development of Danish shipping and maritime.

In the course of their research, the film’s creators noted the great veneration that still surrounds the EAC – both among former employees and the general public. But for young people today, the EAC is largely unknown. That is why Anette Eggert Frydenberg, Ebbe Kyrø, and the two foundations supporting the project believe it is important to give young people the opportunity to delve into the story of one of Denmark’s greatest business adventures, and at the same time gain an insight into how innovation, cyclical fluctuations, and framework conditions play a role in the company’s development.

The film, which is expected to be launched after the 2023 summer holidays, is intended for secondary and higher education and will be available (with accompanying task sets) on Nexus Learning (www.nexuslearning.dk) and Youtube. But the film is not just reserved for teaching purposes. It will be available free of charge to anyone with an interest in shipping, commerce and the economy.

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