In order to prepare it for shipping concrete, Kaiser had it remodel;ed and renewed to accept bulk cement, a novel way of transporting cement at that time. The work was done in the TOdd yards in Seattle and it was there that Kaiser made the acquaintance of that shipbuilding company. In late 1940, he went into business with that company in a joint venture to build 60 freighters for the British. These were the forerunners of the Liberty ships. Kaiser went on to become the most successful shipbuilder in history turning out 1490 ships during the four years of WW II.
Meanwhile, the cement carried by the Permanente played a vital role in the rebuilding of Pearl Harbor and later the ports and dockage across the Pacific as US forces took over islands from the Japanese and turned them into staging areas for further advances. In a number of ways, The Permanente was an historic ship.