GEA enjoys a rich history, rooted in the founding of the metals trading company Metallgesellschaft AG (MG) in 1881.
Based initially in Frankfurt with 40 employees, MG later added chemicals trading and the construction of plants for processing ores and the extraction of non-ferrous metals to its portfolio. When domestic mines could no longer satisfy Germany’s metal requirements, the company rapidly developed extensive relations abroad, also entering financing and later the shipping industry in the 1920s. By merging with the rapidly expanding Bochum concern – GEA – in 1999, from which it later took its own name, the company evolved into a global mechanical engineering company with deep process expertise across several industries.
During the last 140 years, our company has lived through many historic chapters, including world wars and economic challenges, phases of restructuring and name changes, punctuated by periods of geographic and portolio expansion. A near-constant feature in this long trajectory is our international reach and commitment to working across borders and cultures on behalf of customers.
Our business has greatly evolved since 1881. By adding companies with specialized competencies to the group, we have bolstered our portfolio and know-how in key sectors. Their histories are our history and over the decades many of these employees have joined GEA – further strengthening our expertise and reputation around the globe. GEA remains a dynamic company, continually evolving to meet changing customer and consumer needs.
In 1862, brass foundry owner Peter Hilge set up a machining shop where he invented the world’s first wine pump. And 1962 marks the birth of a new generation of hygienic casted rolled stainless steel pumps, which has become popular today.
In 1931 Otto Tuchenhagen founded a small engineering business to develop dairy technology. His innovations went on to revolutionize hygienic processing in the dairy industry.
Procomac was founded in a small workshop in 1979 on the outskirts of the well-known food hub of Parma.
In 1874, brothers Sebastian and Heinrich Huppmann opened a blacksmith’s shop near Kitzingen in northern Bavaria. The rest is history!
GEA screw compressor technology encompasses 50 plus years of expertise and innovation.
Wilhelm Merton, Leo Ellinger & Zacharias Hochschild found Metallgesellschaft Aktiengesellschaft (MG), a joint stock metals trading company, Frankfurt am Main
To meet domestic demand, MG identifies new raw material sources, establishing itself across all continents through investments in mines & metallurgical plants
Following their father Wilhelm’s death, sons Richard and Alfred Merton assume leadership of MG; major foreign investment losses and barriers to international business as a result of WWI; entry into chemicals trading and land and water transport sectors
Several board members removed as a result of their Jewish heritage and/or connections; firm assets commandeered by the National Socialists to support the war economy; Alfred, then Richard Merton, move to England; extensive destruction of German MG facilities as a result of WWII
Richard Merton (d. 1960) resumes leadership as Chairman of the Supervisory Board; period of intense reconstruction and financial growth with increased focus on plant engineering
All MG businesses organized into five divisions: metals processing, plant construction, chemicals, transport and communications with centralized function covering: finance, staff & administration and technology
MG increases its focus on specialty chemicals sector through key acquisitions and on environmental technologies; following decades of growth, MG suffers heavy losses on oil futures transactions in the US, plunging the company into crisis
Restructuring and divestment of 300+ subsidiaries; pharma and specialty chemicals acquisitions; MG organized into four divisions: engineering, chemical, building systems and trading services; joins MDAX; new corporate identity launched
MG acquires majority stake in Bochum-based: Gesellschaft für Entstaubungs-Anlagen mbH (GEA), founded in 1920 by Otto Happel as a dedusting company. GEA evolved into a global concern, manufacturing components, systems and complete lines for: process-, heat & power-, air- and agricultural/dairy technology, bolstered by several key acquisitions (e.g., Grasso, Niro, Westfalia Separator, Tuchenhagen)
Metallgesellschaft AG becomes mg technologies ag; business focus on mechanical- and plant engineering and process equipment; chemicals division dissolved
GEA AG merges with parent company mg technologies ag; mg technologies ag then renamed GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft; Huppmann acquisition; headquarter moves from Frankfurt to Bochum
GEA group structure further streamlined and centralized; headquarter moves from Bochum to Düsseldorf; company purpose launched: Engineering for a better world
GEA divisions organized under two business areas: Solutions and Equipment; centralized and uniform country organization created; new logo combining company name and purpose launched; first sustainability reporting as part of annual financial report; intensified food&beverage acquisitions
GEA group structured into five divisions based on technologies; P&L responsibility returned to division managers; GEA becomes founding member of DAX 50 ESG
GEA publishes its first stand-alone sustainability report (FY2020), sets science-based targets and a net-zero target for 2040
Aerofreeze, Aeromatic-Fielder, Aquarius, Aseptomag, Atlas, Avapac, AWP, Barr-Rosin, Belam, Bischoff, Bowen, Breconcherry, Huppmann, Brouwers, CFS, Colby, Comas, Courtoy, Collette, CMT, Diessel, Dixie Union, Elba, Eurotek, Exergy, FES, FIL, Goedhart, Grasso, Grenco, Hilge, Houle, Intec, Ilka Mafa, Imaforni, Kestner, Koppens, Krämer + Grebe, Laguilharre, Liquid Processing, Lyophil, Matal, Messo, Milfos, Mullerup, Niro, Niro Soavi, Niro PT, Norbco, Nu-Con, Pavan, Pharma Systems, Procomac, Scami, Scanio, Scan-Vibro, Surge, Sterner, TDS, Technofrigo, Tiromat, Tuchenhagen, VIPOLL, Westfalia Landtechnik, Westfalia Separator, WestfaliaSurge, Wiegand, Wilarus, Wolfking
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