In 2001, Germanische Lloyd Industrial Services GmbH (today: DNV-GL) was appointed to coordinate the construction, erection, commissioning and operation of the FINO1 research platform. This appointment was conferred by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) in accordance with a Federal Government policy objective, adopted in 2001, for the construction of a number of research platforms in the North and Baltic Seas, in the immediate vicinity of future offshore wind farms. This platform was constructed for the investigation of environmental conditions which might be conducive to the exploitation of wind power in the German North Sea.

FINO1 was brought into service in the autumn of 2003. Operator of the platform was until January 2012 GL Garrad Hassan Germany GmbH (today: DNV-GL).

The Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety awarded the FINO1 operation to the FuE-Zentrum on 1 February 2012. Meanwhile, the Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy finances the operation of the platform until September 2019.