Azoreans always challenged maresias and sea storms it was the only way to overcome distances and establish contacts and trade.
Shipbuilding has been one of the first industrial activities in the Azores existing shipyards in almost every island. First they built up small vessels intended for fishing, then local traffic (connection between ports of the same island) and later built more robust vessels capable of withstanding the ocean, the inter-island travel. There are records that refer intense, although seasonal, maritime traffic between the islands of São Miguel, Santa Maria, Terceira and Faial in the seventeenth century. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries are called "Pico Yacht" to dominate the Azores cabotage with regular routes in the summer.
In times of sailing due to high competition, many captains risked travel in bad weather and rough seas in order to better be able to monetize the boats and earn more money. In cases of disease it became easier to transport a patient by sea than by land. Many captains have provided numerous services to the Azorean population and played a key role in developing the economy of the islands, allowing not only mobility to the population as well as the possibility to transport excess products to where those where most in need.
Founded in 1871, the Insulana de Navegação company was responsible for more than a century for the regular and periodic traffic between the islands (except Corvo), and those with the island of Madeira and also the United States.
The 70's represent the end of the maritime transport of passengers between the islands. Some of the boats that provided this service were sold, some killed and others converted to tuna. There was a gap of about 20 years, except for links between the central group, with particular intensity between Faial and Pico. The exchange of goods and the movement of people by sea keeping would also in the western group, with Augusto family to ensure, until a few years ago, the link between Porto das Lages das Flores and the Harbour House in Corvo . Only in the second half of the 90's he turned to bet on shipping regional passengers. First became an experience with the hydrofoil "Iapetos" then bet is on the ferries. With the chartering of vessels "Lady of Mann" and "Golfinho Azul" by the Açorline, maritime mobility between the islands was once again a reality for the Azoreans.
Atlânticoline, established in 2005, it began providing services with the ship "Ilha Azul" later with the "Express Santorini", and operation 2009 with the ship "Viking". The latter, an HSC (High Speed Craft) that has brought significant improvements in terms of comfort and service to passengers. One of the great advantages of this type of vessels is the possibility of transporting vehicles that have facilitated the mobility of thousands of Azoreans.
In 2009 will have been registered, the most successful maritime operation passenger ever, reaching a record in terms of the number of passengers transported 112,000.
Currently, the operation of Atlânticoline is done in all the islands from Santa Maria to Corvo with a fleet composed by Ariel (with capacity for 12 passengers), the vessel Express Santorini (with capacity for 630 passengers and 180 cars) and ship Hellenic Wind (with capacity for 660 passengers and 125 cars).
At the end of March 2014, Atlânticoline started regular operations on the islands of the central group with the two new ships forty meters, Gilberto Mariano (with capacity for 298 people and 12 vehicles); and Master Simon (with capacity for 333 people and 8 vehicles) with the charter by the company Transmaçor.
Atlânticoline still have at your service the Canal Cruise ships (with capacity of 244 passengers) and cruise the islands (with 208 passenger capacity).
A "Transmaçor - Maritime Transport Azoreans, Lda", founded on December 22, 1987, resulted from the merger of "the Company Launches Pico, Ldª," point guard vessels "Espalamaca" and "Calheta"; "Azorean Maritime Transport Company, Lda" sailing with the yacht "Terra Alta" and "transcanal - Maritime Canal Transport, Lda", which holds the traditional mouth open boats "picaroto" and "Manuel José ".
These companies held 80% of the capital and the Government the remainder.
In 2011 the Government became holder of 88.37% and the Company and Azorean Maritime Transport Ltd 11.63%.
For the Council Resolution of Government No. 58/2015, of March 31 approved the merger of & nbsp; "Transmaçor - Azorean maritime transport, Lda." To Atlânticoline by incorporation authorizing the acquisition by it of all of the share capital by € 1.00. It is intended to merge the Atlânticoline and Transmaçor societies, global transfer of assets from the second to the first, which will focus the whole of the active assets and liabilities of the merging companies operation.
This merger allows, in continuity, corporate restructuring and thus appears to contribute to an integrated policy for maritime transport of passengers, vehicles and goods, reducing and streamlining decision-making centers and allowing desirable economies of scale and further optimization of operational activity.
This merger power up will also frame the guiding principles of the Regional Government regarding the restructuring of the regional public sector, among others, advocates the concentration of management activity and operation of common entities.
Both companies are integrated into the regional public business sector. Currently, Atlânticoline is owned 16.03% directly by the Azores and 86.97% for the Azores Ports, SA also company with public capital; being the Transmaçor owned exclusively by Atlânticoline.
In september of 2015 is completed the merger of Atlânticoline with Transmaçor. In compliance with the provisions of the Council of Government Resolution No. 58/2015 of 31 March, the head office of Atlânticoline will be moved to the city of Horta.