Our History

Over 60 Years

With over 60 years experience as a freight forwarding company and an International reputation of the highest order, you can rely on the fact John Pipe International is a specialist in getting your cargo safely from A to B, arriving where and when you need it, in the highest standards of condition and client expectation.

Old photo of John Pipe freight forwarding company shipping warehouse


The Pipe dynasty has had links to the sea going back for over a hundred years. An uncle of Founder of John Pipe Ltd F John Pipe, a Mr Couth, was an English Channel pilot working out of Fowey in Devon, during the late 19th century. Richard ‘Dick’ Street, grandfather of John and David Pipe, was the founder in 1939, of a famous shipping line called the South American Saint Line.


John Pipe started the business as John Pipe Ltd in 1961 in Newport in South Wales.


Incorporated under the Companies Act, 1948, John Pipe Limited, was registered on the Thirteenth day of December in One Thousand Nine Hundred and Sixty One.


This freight forwarding company gradually grew and in 1977 expansion into the South of England was achieved when the Sturminster Marshall branch was opened under the guidance of Derek Taylor, one of the original employees who started things off in Newport.


Saw the move to the existing head office and main works occupying a one and a half acre freehold site in Poole, Dorset, where it has a 25,000 square feet premises with all the necessary facilities, such as heavy goods handling including a humidity controlled packing area.


Fully accredited to ISO9001 from 1991 it places quality high on its list of priorities. Its success has grown out of the ability to provide a timely, economical and, above all, personal service for its customers large and small. These days the basic message is still the same, says the Founder’s elder son, David Pipe, “Although now we offer a greater range of packing methods, most notably in resistance to corrosion through the use of laminated foils as a moisture barrier, the one-stop shop philosophy of providing all the services to pack and ship under one roof remains. We now cover the whole of the South Coast of England as it’s largest export packer and can claim customers all over the UK.”


Additionally, In 1995 this freight forwarding company opened modern premises at Chandlers Ford, housing all the same facilities required to provide a complete service covering Hampshire, with full overhead craneage to 8 tonnes.


In 2001 the Company celebrated its 40th anniversary at the Indoor Karting Centre in Bournemouth. Jenny Pipe, the Managing Director’s wife, presented a trophy to the Production Manager at the Hampshire Branch, Philip Williams, one of only three Employees who remember working at the South Wales Branch which was sold in 1985.


In 2002, the Company’s biggest news was the acquisition of freight forwarding company Active International Movements Ltd. With this expansion the John Pipe Group could now provide a true “one-stop-shop”.


Was the year in which the company decided to merge Active with John Pipe Ltd and John Pipe International was born. All aspects of the processes of importing and exporting are now available from the one company.


A fantastic 50th Anniversary party was held in Bournemouth at the Riviera Hotel in December 2011. Attended by over 40 former and current employees, the dinner was preceded by a reception with a speech by the Managing Director. Photographs were displayed recalling people and events down the years including one of the first cases packed in the early 60s at the Newport Works.


In 2017, Nathan Kennedy became Managing Director of John Pipe International; having been with the company since 2008 where he began his journey as the Operations Manager.


Having reached retirement, in 2019, the Pipe family sold the freight forwarding company to the Managing Director Nathan Kennedy.


In 2020, the company gained Cyber Essentials status, demonstrating our commitment to cyber security. Cyber Essentials helps to guard against the most common cyber threats.


John Pipe International, a freight forwarding company, now has over 60 years experience delivering export packing and freight solutions. With MPAS and ISO 9001 accreditations, it means that we are certified packers for the MoD and can assist with all barcodes and labelling requirements.

By Land, Air or Sea

We tailor our freight solution to suit your business needs. Our expert packing team take care, using high-quality materials to ensure goods are safe during transit. We offer bespoke freight options by land, air or sea.

Think your project is a bit tricky?

We’ve got you covered. Whatever you need to export, we are a freight forwarding company that can handle packing design, project management and specialist freight.

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