From the gateway to the world to the international city with heart. And always staying true to the Hanseatic tradition of the reputable businessman. Read more about our almost 100 years of company history below.
Into the future with the next generation
30 year-old engineer Michael Koppermann, son of company owners Monika and Peter Koppermann, joins the company. After completing his studies, Michael Koppermann completed a management trainee program at a Koppermann Chinese joint venture and then went on to gain several years of professional experience outside the family business at a subsidiary of a German corporate group in Asia. “Michael’s decision to join the family business makes us very proud and is also a good sign for the future for our partners all over the world.
By specializing early on in high-quality fabrics for demanding customers from the fashion industry, the subsidiary Koppermann Italia emerged unscathed from the 2009 economic crisis. In the years that followed, the company was able to continue to increase its sales. The high demands of customers in terms of delivery capability and flexibility made it necessary to merge the administration and warehouse facilities. The company found a building that met all of its requirements 25 km northwest of fashion capital Milan. With the ideal strategic location, the municipality of Uboldo became the new home of Koppermann Italia in the textile heart of Europe.
A new standard in product data management
After a two-year project phase, Koppermann finalized its largest IT investment ever with the implementation of the Tex-Define™ product data management system developed by former daughter company, Koppermann Computersysteme. More than 90 years of company expertise is now stored centrally in a transparent database containing master data on articles and production partners. The system compiles the production data from more than 1,000 articles regularly found in the Koppermann product range with access to the data possible at any time. Quality risks can be identified at an early stage thanks to end-to-end production monitoring. Tex-Define has taken the company to a new level of reliability and punctuality in its delivery processes.
Tradition meets innovation
True to the company’s philosophy “keep traditional values and be open-minded to new ideas", Koppermann adapts to the ever increasing demands of a technically challenging working world by moving its online presentation to a new platform. In spring 2013 the company launches the re-designed website with an integrated high-performance online shop.
A new generation in the starting blocks
In the course of a foresighted staff and business policy Peter Koppermann transfers shares of the company to his wife Monika as well as to their children Claudia and Michael Koppermann. The transfer marks a first step towards the generation change. After graduating from university with an engineer’s degree, Michael Koppermann gathers first business experience in China and Singapore.
Visionary staff management
October: Koppermann is one of the winners of the competition „Unternehmen mit Weitblick“ (engl: “company with vision”) for outstanding and foresighted human resource planning and development. The prize is awarded to companies that when filling a position focus on aptitude and qualification of an applicant rather than their age. Peter Koppermann receives the award in the presence of the press on the occasion of a ceremony in the premises of the Munich Chamber of Industry and Commerce. For him „the stability, experience and knowhow of the “generation 50+” combined with the energy, carefreeness and freshness of the younger employees is the company’s formula of success”.
Farewell to Walter Koppermann
December 4th 2010: At the age of 91, Walter Koppermann passes away peacefully in his Munich house. The textile industry takes leave of one of the grand pioneers of the business. With his entrepreneurial finesse, dedication and energy he laid the foundation for the continuous success of the company in the over 30 years of his professional life. Walter Koppermann will never be forgotten in the textile world.
Polygiene – safer to touch
Koppermann becomes the exclusive sales partner of Polygiene for the German, Austrian and Swiss market and introduces its antimicrobial finishing for the institutional business sector at the Heimtextil 2010. Polygiene is based on natural silver salt and reduces the growth of bacteria, viruses and fungi in textiles.The portfolio covers sprays used for the treatment of shoes, headgear and gloves, over wash-in products for industrial laundries to solutions for the application already during the fibre production.
HOT. Home Of Textiles
In the summer of 2009, a long planned project and one of the most important ones in the company history is completed: Koppermann moves to its new headquarters “HOT” =Home of Textiles. Precisely tailored to the needs of a modern, internationally active company, inside and out.
Koppermann offers a sustainable novelty in the portfolio: High-value grey fabric made of 100% Organic Cotton. The answer to the increasing demand for ecologically responsible produced textiles. Fabric in its purest form: without artificial fertilizers or pesticides. This helps to preserve the environment. And feels great.
Fabric as individual as your requests
Using the new slogan, Koppermann presents "the first car upholstered from the outside in". Lisa Schroeder "dresses up" a 1969 vintage Fiat Toppolino, using exclusively fabrics from the Koppermann collection. A real eye-catcher, the "Koppolino" is everybody’s darling at the Frankfurt Heimtextil, the biggest textile trade fair in the world.
An important distinction
Koppermann is awarded a prize for being one of the most attractive employers in Germany. This is the result of a large-scale survey, conducted by Hewitt Associated in cooperation with the German newspaper “Handelsblatt” and the DIV (engl. "German institute for business"). Koppermann wins, pulling ahead of over 100 competitors, amongst which are groups such as Deutsche Börse AG, Porsche Holding, Steigenberger Hotels and Sony.
Confidence in Textiles
Koppermann Textiles is certified according to the OEKO-TEX Standard. The standard is an internationally valid certification indicating that strict attention has been paid to the exclusion of possible harmful substances in the textile production process as well as in any accessories used. Due to the cooperation with experienced sales partners of the Iberian Peninsula, the introduction is successful.
As one of the first companies in the industry, Koppermann launches an online shop. Customers now can place orders any time, day and night, 365 days of the year. The procedure is safe, quick and simple. Registered users can check the stock, order directly and access information about the company as well as “special offers”.
All in one man's hand
Peter Koppermann acquires the remaining 10% of the family business and is now the sole stockholder. The purchase completes the generation change at Koppermann.
An important year
Walter Koppermann retires after selling his shares in the business to his son Peter. Koppermann's main bank, Mees Pierson, is closed due to re-organizational processes. The banks “National Westminster” and “Schröder Münchmeier Hengst & Co.” follow. Koppermann is forced to replace more than 50% of the existing credit lines within a short time. 3 reasons make the change a success: the transfer of the company into the hands of the next generation; growing financial solidity; and the huge efforts of the advisory board.
A daughter becomes independent
The subsidiary, which now successfully sells software for the textile industry, is handed over to Wolfgang Koppermann and his partner Andreas Lachner. This is the first of a series of acts through which the company is handed over to the next generation. Werner Pfleghar, managing director of G. Koppermann & Co. GmbH, retires. Simultaneously, he chairs the advisory board. Thus, his knowledge and experience are preserved in the company.
An important event
G. Koppermann & Co. GmbH celebrates its 75th birthday with a party in the Forsthaus Wörnbrunn, which even attracts a lot of interest from the media. Suppliers from all over the world, many important clients from East and West as well as high-ranking representatives of banks and insurance companies join in with the celebrations. Margret Metz becomes managing director of Koppermann Italia. The subsidiary is the base for Europe-wide distribution, which is constantly improving.
Enter New Business
Koppermann outsources the computer segment by setting up a subsidiary named “Koppermann Computer Systeme GmbH”. Wolfgang Koppermann and Andreas Lachner, two designated computer specialists, are appointed co-partners as well as managing directors and with them, the company sets the benchmark. In order to meet the high requirements of CAD-programs, the company develops its own software. Today many people all over the world are successfully using this software "made by Koppermann".
Weaving a new network
Koppermann Textiles once again becomes Mitsubishi's sales partner and adds its CAD-Programs (computer aided design) for the textile industry to the Koppermann product range. Peter Koppermann's brother Wolfgang is entrusted with the project management.
New activities in the south
Koppermann Netherlands is sold to its managing director in Holland. In 1987 this money is invested in a new subsidiary, Koppermann Italia, based in Milan, Italy. A strategic decision: Koppermann develops the institutional business to an independent division. For the first time, the company exhibits at the Heimtextil Fair in Frankfurt with a booth of its own.
The third generation
Peter Koppermann (son of Walter Koppermann) becomes a partner in the company. His knowledge of business management and his expertise boost the company’s culture of innovation– especially in the areas of business organization, data processing and currency transaction. With his help, the company remains true to its philosophy: "Keep the good and be open-minded to the new".
Active in special markets
The business with bed linen develops into a full range of products for hospitals, retirement and nursing homes.
Koppermann is successfully established in the textile market. Walter Koppermann therefore also tries to break into the upcoming electronic market by taking over the company Eurotronica. When, however, the industry suffers from a constant decline in prices, the flexible businessman reacts by winding up Eurotronica in 1982.
A new subsidiary
The company sets up “Koppermann Netherlands” for better distribution in the Benelux countries. It is located in Almelo, the center of the Dutch textile industry.
Koppermann enters a new segment
The range of products is extended to printed bed ware which comes mainly from India.
A turning-point for the company
Grey fibre business is over for good. Walter Koppermann concentrates his activities on gaining direct entry to the grey fabric market. Working with his new employee Werner Pfleghar, a textile expert, he makes contact with fabric producers as yet unknown to the German market and establishes a network of suppliers. India and Taiwan become the main supplying countries.
Koppermann decides to give up trade in grey jute and sisal so the office in Hamburg is closed down. Munich becomes the company's headquarters. Further developments: hemp and flax are gradually being replaced with synthetic fibres. Walter Koppermann manages to find the company's first suppliers of grey fabric in Egypt and Yugoslavia. Since gaining direct market-entry proves difficult, Koppermann works as Mitsubishi's distribution partner.
Ups and downs
Grey jute and sisal are taken to the stock market. This change has a lasting detrimental effect on the development of the business in Hamburg. On the other hand, business with hemp (which is now also being purchased in Hungary, Romania and Bulgaria) and flax in Munich remains stable.
The start of the economic miracle
The liberalization of the import trade (as a result of the currency reforms) shows pronounced effect. The company founder, Georg Koppermann, gradually retires. The headquarters in Hamburg concentrate on trade with grey jute (mainly from India) and sisal (from Brazil). Munich, on the other hand, dedicates its efforts to hemp (from Yugoslavia, Italy and China) and flax (from the Netherlands, Belgium and Russia).
The Currency reforms
June 20th 1948: introduction of the "Deutschmark". The family once again is able to make a living from the earnings of their import business.
A new beginning part II
Walter Koppermann takes over the Munich branch and moves to the Bavarian capital. Here he also meets his wife-to-be Annemarie. Thanks to her multilingual skills and organizational talent, she contributes considerably to the company's success.
A new beginning
The office in Hamburg is completely bombed. The family’s home is seized by the British Military, but finally released. For the time being business it becomes the company’s headquarters. To ensure that the company is allowed to participate in the limited import business with fixed prices, Koppermann maintains the import quotas which were used in pre-war times.
The war years
The Reich-office for bast fibre demands that the German import business guarantees the full supply of German weaving mills during the war. Sources are primarily Italy as well as Central and Eastern European countries.
The next generation takes on responsibilities
Georg Koppermann's sons, Hans-Jürgen and Walter, join the company. Due to a critical shortage of foreign currency, clearing accounts have to be introduced for several countries such as Yugoslavia. Koppermann aims however to continue its attractive offers despite these difficulties. For this reason, the company founds a branch in Vukovar, Yugoslavia. Within a short time, the branch is moved to Novisad.
The Nazi takeover
One of the first economic policies put into place by the Nazi regime is import exchange controls. This restriction limits free trade. The branch in Rotterdam has to be shut down but it is not until the start of World War II that free trade is completely disrupted.
Business expansion within Europe
Business flourishes. Koppermann founds branches in Munich, Rotterdam and Vienna. Thanks to the entrepreneurial finesse of its owners the company survives the world economic crisis unscathed.
The death of partner Spiegelberg makes a change of name necessary. From now on it is "G. Koppermann & Co".
Our business activities expand
Koppermann, Spiegelberg & Co. works as an agency for the London based company Duffus, which imports jute from India. The activities of the business now extend to Germany, Denmark, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, Austria, Sweden, Czechoslovakia and Hungary.
Koppermann, Spiegelberg & Co. is founded as a trading company for sisal and jute in Hamburg.