Viking River Cruises dates to 1997, when company chairman Tor Hagen purchased four Russian river cruise ships. The line has since grown into the largest river cruise company in Europe. In 2012, Viking began launching its 190-passenger Viking Longships, kicking off a building spree: Viking launched 55 river cruise ships over the course of six years. After a shipbuilding slowdown in 2017 and 2018, the company launched seven vessels in 2019, bringing its fleet to 65. In addition to Europe, Viking also sails in China, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia and Egypt.