The founding of HOERBIGER Nederland B.V. in Heerlen, Netherlands, marked HOERBIGER’s entry into the international service business for compressor valves. In rapid succession, HOERBIGER expanded its valve service network. In the late 1970s, service locations were founded in Germany, Switzerland, France, Italy, England, the USA and Canada. In the 1980s, Singapore, and Australia followed. By the beginning of 1985, 16 service branches were already carrying the company’s reputation out into the world. Others followed. In 1986, HOERBIGER do Brasil opened a service center in Salvador, Brazil, in LATAM.
Today, our customers benefit from our unique application know-how and the wealth of knowledge and experience gained from 125 years of valve construction. HOERBIGER currently has over 70 service locations in 43 countries. More than 1,000 employees at HOERBIGER ensure first-class service – worldwide and around the clock.
In October 1969, 29-year-old Horst Müller left his home in Austria with his Japanese wife and two daughters. His destination was Japan, land of the rising sun. He took with him one million Austrian schillings, an excellent knowledge of compressor valves gained through an intensive one-year training course in Vienna, and a healthy dose of optimism.
Horst Müller’s arrival in Asia was one small step for a man, but a giant leap for HOERBIGER in Asia.
In February 1970, HOERBIGER Nippon Kabushiki Kaisha (HNKK) was registered as a new HOERBIGER company. At that time it was rare for foreign companies to set up a subsidiary without local shareholders. HNKK was the first HOERBIGER company to be founded in Asia.
Today, after 50 years, HOERBIGER has four production plants in China, two in India, and 25 service locations in the Asia & Pacific region. More than 1,800 employees in 11 countries ensure that the group is always close to its customers.
In 1961 Hubert Wagner joined HOERBIGER in Vienna. He was inspired by the idea of establishing the HOERBIGER brand in the United States. One year later, Martina Hörbiger gave him 25,000 US dollars and the order to establish HOERBIGER in the USA.
The HOERBIGER Corporation of America (HCA) was founded in 1963 in Roslyn, New York State. By the end of 1965, HCA’s sales rose by 300 percent.
To further grow this new business, Wagner soon realized that he had to set up local production in the USA to improve delivery times for American customers. In 1967, production began in Woodside, Queens, New York City.
1979, HCA moved to Florida to concentrate production at a central location.
Since then, HOERBIGER has continued its U.S. growth through strong, long-time customer relationships, and a series of industry advancements, including the introduction of the CP valve in 2011, and the ongoing deployment of new production automation technologies.
In 1957, HOERBIGER expanded its product portfolio and began series production of clutch plates in Schongau, Germany. In 1964 the production of clutch plates was transferred to Penzberg, Germany.
In 1984, HOERBIGER began series production of synchronizer rings for passenger car manual transmissions. In the 1990s, HOERBIGER revolutionized the manufacture of synchronizer products: For the first time, HOERBIGER succeeded in producing synchronizer rings for passenger car manual transmissions in a single operation – solely by forming sheet steel. Today, HOERBIGER is the leading supplier of synchronizer systems worldwide: Nearly 1,500 employees in Schongau, Peiting, Penzberg, Oberstenfeld and Changzhou contribute to the success of the Strategic Business Unit Drive Technology.
70 years ago, the company HOERBIGER & CO moved into part of the “aircraft hangar” in Altenstadt and began producing compressor valves with a small team.
The step onto German soil was a success: In April 1952 HOERBIGER had 40 employees in Altenstadt. Three years later the number of employees had already increased to 110.
In 1956, the company finally moved – in the meantime under the new name HOERBIGER & CO KG – to its own new building “Im Forchet” in Schongau, the current location of HOERBIGER Kompressortechnik GmbH.
HOERBIGER conquers the German market
The company continued to grow in the following years. New locations and business areas were added and the number of employees grew.
Today, we have 13 HOERBIGER locations in Germany with around 2,000 employees. In addition to the Drive Technology and Compression Technology Strategic Business Units, the Rotary Solutions and Safety Divisions also maintain larger plants in Germany.
On 15 February 1945, the main plant in Simmering is almost completely destroyed by an air raid. The end of the war is tantamount to the loss of all patents and participations in foreign companies. The work of 20 years lies in ruins. A little later Alfred Hörbiger dies. His wife Martina Hörbiger starts the reconstruction with her husband's closest colleagues.
Against the background of rapid technical developments, Alfred Hörbiger’s decision to manufacture valves in-house is of particular importance. A large order for flushing pump valves for ship diesel engines is the starting point. Despite the devastating general economic situation that had triggered the global economic crisis, production can be started in 1931 on the new company premises in Vienna Simmering.
With his innovative valve for compressors Hanns Hörbiger laid the foundation for the present Group. The HOERBIGER steel plate valve overcame all the disadvantages of valve designs that were common at the end of the 19th century. It was a unique selling proposition.
The HOERBIGER steel plate valve, however, not only enabled the advancement of blast furnace technology, but also paved the way for the invention of modern pressure chemistry. This made it one of the key technologies for the industrial development at the beginning of the 20th century.
In 2020, HOERBIGER can look back on 125 years of successful company history.
We look forward to at least 125 more years with our business partners – and to working together to find the best answers to the challenges ahead.
Join HOERBIGER here on our website to celebrate our big anniversary. We will be posting important milestones in the company’s history – from our earliest beginnings to today’s Group with its activities around the world.
"Our valves are key components for ventilators," says Managing Director Philipp Baldermann of HOERBIGER Flow Control. The piezo valves developed and manufactured by HOERBIGER are unique worldwide: they are used when extreme speed with the highest precision is required for pneumatic controls and standard technologies are no longer sufficient – such as in the field of medical ventilation.
In the last weeks and months, HOERBIGER has seen a global increase in demand for components of medical ventilators. We are working day and night to deliver these critical components. In that way, HOERBIGER helps ease the supply of medical ventilators in Europe and across the world.
New vehicle electronics enhance comfort and improve protection. Cameras, for example, can replace exterior rearview mirrors and help solve blind spot issues, the cause of a large number of accidents during turning – which often carry serious consequences.
Zug, Switzerland – effective January 31, 2020, the HOERBIGER Group has acquired the majority stake of the Austrian oil and gas solutions provider RAGSOL GmbH, previously belonging to RAG Austria AG. RAGSOL provides comprehensive solutions and unique products for mature oil and gas fields with the goal of producing oil and gas more efficiently, at lower cost, and environmentally friendly.