ZIM's story spans over 70 years. From its beginnings as a carrier of immigrants from war-torn Europe to the ports of the future State of Israel, ZIM has grown to become one of the world’s leading shipping companies, operating in every part of the globe. The Beginning: A Company with Purpose ZIM was established in 1945 by the Jewish Agency, Histadrut labor federation, and the Israel Maritime League. The company's first ship, the Kedmah, was purchased in 1947. The early fleet included ships that were refitted to carry immigrants from Europe and to bring much-needed supplies during the 1948 War of Independence, and the difficult early years of statehood.