The story

The Stahlkontor story

Defense manufacturing and trading house

In 1933/34, Harkort & Eicken GmbH, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hoesch AG, was founded in Wetter/Ruhr. In the course of the National Socialist rearmament policy, the plants in Hagen-Wehringhausen, Eckesey and Wetter were expanded in the following years. During the Second World War, the sites were among the most important suppliers for the German tank construction program. They produced housings and assembly parts for armored fighting vehicles as well as accessories for guns. In 1944, around 40 percent of the total production of hulls and superstructures for assault guns was manufactured at Harkort & Eicken.

With the “unbundling” of the German iron and steel industry by the Allied military government, the Hagen plant was separated from the Hoesch Group in 1947 and renamed Stahlwerke Hagen AG. After the management buyout by Heinrich Wiedow, the latter ran Stahlkontor as a trading house specializing in special and stainless steels.

Steel construction history through the ages

Stahlkontor was founded in 1951 as a spin-off of the steel trading and export division of Stahlwerke Hagen AG by one of its former board members, Heinrich Wiedow. The company has a long history dating back to 1853 and includes a number of predecessor companies. As Harkort-Eicken Edelstahlwerke GmbH, it had been part of Dortmund-based Hoesch AG and Vereinigte Stahlwerke AG since 1925 and 1931 respectively.

Return to special steel processing and specialization

In 1969, Georg Schmitz (with the company Schwarze KG) and Erich Kramer acquired the GmbH shares of Stahlkontor via Schmitz Beteiligungs- und Verwaltungsgesellschaft mbH. They refocused on the machining and processing of steels and invested in appropriate processing equipment. In the mid-1980s, the first laser and waterjet systems went into operation.

Contacts with the Hoesch and Thyssen companies resulted in orders for the processing of armor steels and amagnetic steels for submarines and ensured that defense technology know-how was quickly regained. With its modern production facilities and technical experience, Stahlkontor is now one of the leading international contract manufacturers in both the civilian and military sectors.