When Theodor Scholten and his brother-in-law Heinrich Kann laid the foundation for the Th. Scholten GmbH & Co. KG over 70 years ago, they had one goal in mind, in particular: to create the basis for a good livelihood in post-war Germany. Today, the company is one of the leading and most innovative providers in the area of industrial wear protection. Many decades of producing custom wear protection solutions for customers all over the world bear witness to this.
1947 – 1949: On 24 May 1947, the company was registered as a business in Düsseldorf under the name “Theo Scholten and Heinrich Kann”. The purpose of the company was stated to be the “production of highly wear resistant linings made of hard ceramic”. The business established itself quickly on the market, the product range constantly expanded, and on 18 June 1949, the business for “wholesale floor, wall, and other stoneware tiles of all kinds” was registered as a company under the name “Theodor Scholten”.
FHEADQUARTERS IN METTMANN
1952 – 1954: In November 1952, the company moved its headquarters to Mettmann. On 15 Jan. 1953, the company was entered in the commercial register under HRA 352 at the District Court of Mettmann as the limited partnership “Th. Scholten & Co.” with Mr. Theodor Scholten as the managing director and Mr. Heinrich Kann as a limited partner. The stated purpose of the company: the production of highly wear resistant hard ceramic linings for apparatuses, trenches, chutes, pipelines, etc., used in mining and other large-scale industries as well as the sale of floor, wall, and stoneware tiles of all kinds”.
The company continued to grow, and in 1954 the first production hall was built at the address Teichstraße 20 in Mettmann.
BUSINESS RELATIONSHIPS WITH THE CZECH REPUBLIC
A few years later in November 1957, one of the most decisive steps in the history of the company was taken: the establishment of business contacts in Czechoslovakia by Theodor Scholten in connection with the expansion of the range of materials to include products made of cast basalt. This developed into a successful business relationship with EUTIT Stara Voda that helped shape the company and continues to this day.
A GENERATIONAL TRANSITION
The entrepreneurial spirit of the company founder made a lasting impression on his sons.
In 1965, the next generation joined the company in the form of Detlef Scholten. The eldest son of the company founder continued the business success and expanded the company’s international contact base. The product range was oriented towards the core competencies of the company, but also towards growth in promising industries by developing new business areas and entering new markets.
In 1975, another son of the company founder, Dr. rer. pol. Theo Scholten, joined the company. In particular, he took over the position of business manager and controller while simultaneously driving forward the internationalisation of the company.
In 1985, Dr.-Ing. Jürgen Scholten started working at the company as the technical director. His expertise made a decisive contribution to the competitiveness and innovative strength of the Th. Scholten GmbH & Co. KG during a period of continuous technological change. His technical expertise is still valuable today.
RELOCATION OF THE COMPANY HEADQUARTERS FROM METTMANN TO WÜLFRATH
1984 marked another milestone in the history of the company: Thanks to the growing number of major contracts, the company urgently needed to expand, and the headquarters was moved from Mettmann to the Robert-Bosch-Straße in Wülfrath. The new production and administration building the company moved into in February 1984 has 3 times more office space in the administrative wing, and thus enough space for the necessary increase in staff, as well as 4 times more floor space for operations and production. The first major contract was even completed in the new but unfinished building.
The new factory enabled more efficient manufacturing: Thanks to a connection to the railway network, deliveries of cast basalt products from the Czech Republic could be unloaded quickly by forklift right off the car and transported directly to the storage area without having to reload beforehand, saving time. The crane rails in the production areas, which extended over the railway tracks, made unloading deliveries of steel pipes as well as loading completely lined pipes into export containers much easier. Overall, the relocation made a substantial improvement to the entire material flow in production.
EXPANSION OF THE PRODUCT RANGE
Over the years, the range of wear protection products was expanded to include ceramic materials like aluminium oxide, zirconium oxide, silicon carbide, and innovative, cement-based materials like SC-WearStop. With this wide range of products, the Th. Scholten GmbH & Co. KG is able to realise the optimal wear protection solution for every customer depending on the customer’s requirements like flexibility, efficiency, or the ability to withstand extremely high stresses. Aluminium oxide and SC-WearStop product range in particular proved to be drivers of growth over the decades.