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Tuesday, July 3rd 2012, 4:04am

Schweriner Eisengießerei und Reparaturwerkstatt AG

This firm was founded in 1888 as the Eisengießerei Gebrüder Klingebiel, an iron foundry and manufacturer of bridge components. In 1939 it merged with a nearby mechanical engineering firm, Torfindustrie Heinrich Sander, and expanded its activities to include the manufacture of agricultural machinery, conveyor belts and power winch gear for the fisheries industry, cranes and the contract repair of marine and industrial diesel engines. The firm presently employs more than one thousand three hundred workers.


Tuesday, July 3rd 2012, 9:16pm

Gebruder Eickhoff Maschinenfabrik und Eisengießerei GmbH

In 1864 the engineer Johann Eickhoff founded in Bochum a workshop and iron foundry to equipment and tools for the growing steel industry of the Ruhr district. Control of the concern passed to the founder’s sons Carl and Robert in 1871, from which time the firm began to specialize in the construction of mining equipment, need to exploit the coal, iron and salt resources of the region. Nevertheless, until the Twentieth Century, the firm continued to manufacture components for such great Ruhr firms as Krupp and Bochumer Verein.

In 1907 the firm introduced its Schüttelrutsche device, the first piece of mechanical equipment for the extraction of coal. This was followed in 1914 by the Schrämmaschine, the mechanical cutting device that replaced the workers carving at the coal face with one single machine operator. Branch factories established in Belgium and England were lost during the Great War, but the firm’s control of its patents assured its rapid recovery in the postwar period. From 1925 the firm included in its product range conveyor equipment for the mechanised removal of coal and ore from the mine face.

In 1939 the firm relocated to new facilities in Wiemelhausen, which permitted expansion and fulfillment of export orders from South America and Central Europe. Employment exceeds eight hundred.


Wednesday, July 4th 2012, 1:31am

Vereinigte Torgelower Gießereien GmbH

The municipality of Torgelow has long been an industrial centre, dating from 1753 when King Friedrich II der Grosse established there the Königlich-Preußischen Eisenhüttenwerkes bei Torgelow, which remained a state enterprise until 1861, when it passed to private hands. In the years before the Great War there were no fewer than fourteen iron foundries and workshops in the city, producing agricultural equipment, machine parts and components for merchant ships, each establishment employing between two- and three-hundred workers. During the period of hostilities, these workshops were naturally engaged in the manufacture of munitions. With the return of peace the demand for metal products in the region declined, and many of the existing workshops were forced to close, at least temporarily. In 1922 the surviving firms agreed to a plan of amalgamation which stabilised their decline and brought the current enterprise into existence.

With some assistance from the Government, the four largest plants were modernised and equipped with new melting furnaces for iron, steel and other metal alloys. The output of the firm included forged and cast machine parts for the shipbuilding industry, the electro-technical industry and the emerging automobile industry. It has joined with other firms to explore the construction of wind turbines for the generation of electricity. At the present time it employs some one thousand four hundred workers.


Wednesday, July 4th 2012, 1:08pm

Stahlbau Lavis KG

This firm was founded by the industrialist Michael Lavis in 1897 to undertake the manufacture of industrial steam boilers. Works were erected in Offenbach am Main and from 1907 the firm also undertook the construction of large structural steel work for bridges, towers and factory buildings. In the years prior to the Great War the firm constructed several notable bridges, including the Deutschherrnbrücke in Frankfurt am Main, completed in 1913. In the 1920s the firm was called upon to participate in the reconstruction of national infrastructure, including the construction of the Offenbach-Fechenheimer Mainbrücke in Offenbach am Main, completed in 1934.

The firm presently comprises a manufacturing complex on a 7.5-hectare site in Offenbach, with production halls, administrative buildings, storage facilities and amenities for its workers. It output includes large steel constructions of many types, including pipelines, tower cranes, bridges and bridge components, and the components for complete industrial buildings.


Thursday, July 5th 2012, 1:06am

Maschinenfabrik Hesser AG

Friedrich Hesser and his brother-in-law, Karl Geiger founded in 1861 a workshop to produce machines for the manufacture of paper envelopes. Their factory in the Cannstatt district of Baden (now part of the city of Stuttgart) came to specialise in the construction of packaging machinery – by 1882 the firm was making machines for create containers such commodities as coffee and chicory, as well as paper bags. Automatic machines for the creation of containers were introduced in 1911, and by 1920 these predominated in the firm’s production.

The firm was converted to a joint stock company in 1922, and in 1934 acquired the firm Maschinenfabrik Carl Drohmann, which also manufactured container-making machines. In the latter part of the 1930s the firm integrated its container manufacturing equipment with the machines making the products themselves, resulting in continuous production lines for many items such as biscuits, candies and drink powders.


Thursday, July 5th 2012, 12:48pm

Kaeser Kompressoren AG

This concern was founded in 1919 by Carl Kaeser to produce spare parts, such as gears, for automobiles and machinery, but from 1922 forward the firm concentrated on construction of special machines for the glass industry of Thüringen. In 1930 it acquired licenses for the production of piston and screw compressors and developed techniques to apply these to industrial plant equipment. The factory at Coburg expanded to meet the demand for pneumatic equipment and in 1937 the firm acquired the Geraer Kompressorenwerke, which doubled the firm’s production base and added to its product line mobile air compressors for use in construction work.


Thursday, July 5th 2012, 1:20pm

Wesselmann-Bohrer Compagnie AG

This firm was founded in 1895 to undertake the manufacture of twist drills, reamers, taps, milling cutters, lathe chucks and drilling machines for the metalworking industry. Its original facilities were located in the city of Gera but relocated in 1899 to the suburban district of Zwötzen. The firm is a major supplier of metalworking tools with regional offices across Germany and representatives in the major industrial centres of Europe. Current employment is more than nine hundred workers.


Thursday, July 5th 2012, 1:35pm

Gebrüder Krüger und Compagnie GmbH

This firm was founded in 1900 to engage in the manufacture of gas and water taps, beer taps and bar facilities and other types of valves and metal appliances, and carry on the business of the Gebrüder Krüger, a partnership established in 1873. In 1917 the Carl Schoening Eisengießerei und Werkzeugmaschinenfabrik of Berlin-Reinickendorf was acquired, providing the firm with its own casting and forging facilities. This was followed in 1921 by the purchase of the assets of the Schaeffer und Oehlmann firm. The firm’s facilities in Berlin-Köpenick and Berlin-Reinickendorf employ between them more than one thousand workers.


Wednesday, July 11th 2012, 8:07pm

Turbon Werke GmbH

This concern came into existence in 1907 through the merger of Taifun Ventilatoren AG, a manufacturer of industrial ventilation equipment, and Panzer AG, who manufactured safes, steel furniture and other metal goods. In the years before the Great War the firm specialised in the manufacture of ventilation fans for use aboard ships of the Imperial Navy and for many vessels constructed for German merchant shipping firms, as well as users abroad. These fans were well known for their reliability and their quiet operation. In 1923 operations were moved to new and larger facilities in Berlin-Reinickendorf, where the product line expanded to include axial and radial fans, ventilation fans for industrial and marine applications, household cooling fans, air heaters, climate-control cabinets, drying cabinets, steel furniture and vending machines of various sorts. A branch factory was organised in Seifhennersdorf, and completed in 1936. The firm presently employs more than one thousand workers, of whom more than three hundred are employed at Seifhennersdorf.


Wednesday, July 11th 2012, 11:06pm

Leipziger Werkzeug- und Gerätefabrik GmbH

This firm came into being in 1931, through the defensive merger of several small industrial firms located in the vicinity of Leipzig in Saxony. Of these, the Metallwarefabrik Clemens Humann, established in 1907, formed the core of the enterprise. The Humann firm was a manufacturer of drawn metal products, cooking and heating appliances and cooking pots. It was joined by the Armaturenfabrik Robert Kutscher, which had manufactured sanitary fittings and valves since 1866. The third element in the association - Reparaturwerkstatt für Gießereimaschinen Fritz Koether, had been founded in 1921 to repair and overhaul machine tools. Following the amalgamation, the firm proceeded to begin the manufacture of machine tools for the aviation industry, primarily sheet metal bending presses, as well as continuing the production of valves and stamped metal products, now concentrating on the expanding defence market. At the close of 1941 the firm employed more than one thousand workers in its Leipzig facilities.


Wednesday, July 18th 2012, 12:39am

Heinrich Koppers AG

The company was founded in 1901 by Heinrich Koppers, who had previously worked for the firm Dr. C. Otto und Compagnie, for whom he had developed a number of processes and procedures. By 1904 the new firm had established a reputation for the construction of coke ovens and coal processing equipment. For many years, it was a world leader in carbon technology and built a variety of coke ovens and other equipment in Germany around the world. In 1912 the firm established a subsidiary, Koppers Inc., in Chicago, United States, and marketed its products to many leading American steel producers, including United States Steel. The Koppers-Totzek method for coal gasification, developed in 1938 by Koppers and Friedrich Totzek was first used commercially in 1941, at a pilot plant constructed in Gelsenkirchen. It is expected that other such installations will be built in the future.


Friday, July 20th 2012, 3:37am

Rüsch-Werke AG

In 1827 the entrepreneur Josef Ignaz Rüsch established in Dornbirn an ironworks to meet the needs of communities in the Vorarlberg for agricultural implements. In the following years the concern grew, incorporating a foundry and machine works, and by the late Nineteenth Century it had become a leading specialist in the construction of water turbines.


Friday, July 20th 2012, 4:57pm

Kärntner Maschinenfabriken Eggers GmbH

The original stem of this firm was founded in 1874 by Josef Anton Egger and his partner Anton Moritsch as the Villacher Maschinenfabrik. It manufactured a wide range of machines, principally equipment for the mining, the iron and steel and the saw mill industries of the region. By 1880 the firm was already employing more than fifty workers, and was one of the largest employers in the region. In the latter decades of the Nineteenth Century the firm continued to diversity its products – engaging in the manufacture of steam boilers, large steel constructions and even bridges; the firm derived much revenue from sales to the expanding Imperial and Royal railways. During the Great War the firm was engaged in producing materiel for the Austro-Hungarian military, and in its wake suffered financial disruption. Nevertheless it emerged in the 1920s in sound financial condition.

Taking advantage of its strength the firm took over the competing Maschinenfabrik Klagenfurt and the Metallwarenfabrik Seebach Vormals Emil Neher, forming the present concern. It presently manufactures general machine tools for the mining and manufacturing industries, boilers, turbines for the hydroelectric industry and machine components. Its three factories – in Villach, Klagenfurt and Seebach – together employ than twelve hundred workers.


Wednesday, August 1st 2012, 8:36pm

Allgemeines Deutsches Metallwerk GmbH

This enterprise was founded in 1909 to undertake the manufacture of non-ferrous cast metal parts. During the Great War it came to specialise in the production of bearings – for gear boxes, compressors and engines. It also produced planetary bolts and other custom metal parts. In the years following the hostilities it developed close relationships with the railway and automotive industries and developed many bearing designs to customer requirements. It has also developed centrifugal casting techniques for the manufacture of light-weight components for the aviation industry. The firm’s facilities at Oberschöneweide employ more than one thousand workers, and expansion of the works is underway at the present time.


Friday, August 3rd 2012, 12:39am

Siemens-Reiniger-Werke AG

This enterprise, with its headquarters in the Franconian city of Erlangen, was formed in 1932 by the amalgamation of the firm Reiniger, Gebbert und Schall of Erlangen, with the Phönix AG of Rudolstadt and the Siemens-Reiniger-Veifa mbH of Berlin to combine the resources of the three firms in the area of electro-medical products and X-ray equipment. The core of the firm, Reiniger, Gebbert und Schall, had been founded in 1886 by partners Erwin Moritz Reiniger, Max Gebbert and Karl Friedrich Schall. The company produced mechanical, physical, optical and electro-apparatus such as galvanometers, forehead, mouth and larynx lamps, batteries, medical induction apparatus and microscopy lamps. From 1896 the firm concentrated on the development of X-Ray equipment utilising the patents of Wilhelm Conrad Röntgen. The additional resources gained through the amalgamation with Siemens and Phönix allowed the new venture to dominate the German domestic market for medical X-ray equipment and to establish a commanding position in the world trade in such products.


Friday, August 3rd 2012, 1:39am

Maschinenfabrik Gebrüder Steimel GmbH

In 1878 Johann Steimel founded a factory for the production of agricultural machinery, in which he produced threshing machines, tedders, seed drills and similar devices. In 1883 the firm introduced its first hand-operated milk centrifuges; from the late 1890s these became the principal product of the firm, its Ceres model winning first prizes at the Brussels Exposition of 1897 and the Paris Exposition of 1900. In the years prior to the Great War the firm developed centrifuges for blood separation and for metals processing. During the conflict the firm had begun the manufacture of pumps, and in the postwar period these became an increasing part of its production – particularly gear pumps, centrifugal pumps and slurry pumps. In 1930 it introduced its first seawater resistant self-priming centrifugal pump for water cooled marine diesel engines.


Tuesday, September 4th 2012, 1:14am

Georg Kirsten GmbH

This firm was founded in 1909 to undertake the production of overhead cranes and hoists used by the mechanical engineering industry to move heavy castings and fabrications. A factory was constructed in Sebnitz in Saxony, and the firm prospered in the years before the Great War. It was able to recover quickly in the postwar period and benefited from the modernisation of the steel-making, engineering and locomotive-building industries where new factories were equipped with numerous cranes. The firm also developed a series of vehicle-mounted lifting cranes that could be used on construction job sites or in the repair of automotive equipment. In this regard it has become a primary supplier of such lifting cranes to the Heer for use in the maintenance of heavy equipment. The works has more than seven hundred employees.


Monday, September 10th 2012, 2:30am

Bergwerkmaschinen Dietlas AG

This firm, founded in 1928, manufactures specialised underground mining equipment for the potash and rock salt industries. Its factory, located in the town of Dietlas in Thüringen, manufactures drilling machines, scoop loaders and load carrying vehicles. The works employs more than six hundred, including a design staff.


Tuesday, January 29th 2013, 3:19am

Rheinische Rohrleitungsbau GmbH

The firm Erste Aschaffenburger Special-Maschinenfabrik und Kesselschmiede H. Lentz was established in 1927 to control the marine engine patents of the noted engineer Hugo Lentz; in addition to manufacturing boilers and cross-compound turbine engines for merchant vessels the company licensed its designs widely to the German engine-building industry and to licensees abroad. In 1932 it merged with the Düsseldorf-based Ferdinand Lentjes Kesselschmiede und Maschinenbau AG, and adopted the current corporate style. The firm, with works in Aschaffenburg and Düsseldorf manufactures a wide variety of boilers, marine and stationary steam engines; the latter primarily for industrial use.


Wednesday, January 30th 2013, 3:53am

Büttner Werk AG

In 1874 August Büttner and Dr. Carl Meyer founded in Krefeld the Rheinische Dampfkessel und Maschinenfabrik to manufacture steam boilers for industrial applications; twelve years later, in 1886, the firm diversified into the manufacture of apparatus and equipment for drying, calcinating, burning, cooling and crushing of different materials for the chemical and metallurgical industries. In the years prior to the Great War the firm prospered as a supplier to many of the principal manufacturing companies of Germany, and was particularly buoyed by exports to America. It managed to survive the difficulties which followed the return of peace in 1917, and in 1920 was reorganised as a joint stock company.

In 1934 it acquired the firm of Maschinenfabrik Friedrich Haas, located in Remscheid-Lennep, which added vacuum and textile drying technologies to the concern’s product line. The current corporate style was adopted in 1939.