FROM LOCAL COMPANY TO GLOBAL PLAYER

LAUFEN's headquarters are located in Laufen near Basel, Switzerland. LAUFEN has additional production sites in Austria and the Czech Republic. Steeped in tradition yet ultra-modern, LAUFEN's production plants make over three million ceramic products annually, and distribute these via a worldwide network of retail outlets and sales partners.

Since 1999, LAUFEN has been one of the world's largest bathroom manufacturers in the ROCA Group, which has over 20,000 employees in over 135 countries and produces 38 million ceramic products annually. Similor Group AG, one of the leading companies in the production of faucets with a manufacturing tradition which goes back more than 150 years, has belonged to the group since 2007.   

CONTINUED GROWTH AND SUCCESS

When LAUFEN was founded in Switzerland in 1892, sanitary conditions were well below today's modern standards. Many of these improved standards are due in part to the innovations and contributions of LAUFEN, the only sanitary porcelain manufacturer producing exclusively in Europe at the time. 

LAUFEN's history goes back even further. Around 1878, the pioneer of the mechanized production of sanitary ceramics was located in a factory belonging to the Austrian monarchy. This factory contributed to the well-established situation of the various European manufacturing sites in LAUFEN's home markets of Switzerland, Austria and the Czech Republic, which helped lay the foundation of LAUFEN's quality. Since its earliest days, the mission of LAUFEN has remained the same -- to be a leader in technology, service and design. In the 1980s, the most efficient injection molding technology in the field of ceramics processing was invented by LAUFEN. This was a breakthrough that constituted a lasting contribution to industrial production. Just as important for LAUFEN is its continuing developments in the field of design. Wall-hung toilets and floor-standing washbasins, for instance, have made a new aesthetic possible.

LAUFEN has now widened its expertise and its portfolio of ceramics, bathtubs, furniture and accessories by adding faucets to the product range. In 1854, Charles Kugler founded a small company for brass products in Lausanne. Faucets have been manufactured by LAUFEN since 2009.


MILESTONES IN HISTORY OF LAUFEN

2014 LAUFEN explores new boundaries of SaphirKeramik through a collaboration with the highly innovative designers Konstantin Grcic and Toan Nguyen.
2013 With the development of SaphirKeramik, LAUFEN has introduced a groundbreaking world-innovation that has set a new trend in bathroom design.  A revolutionary material, SaphirKeramik permits the creation of wafer-thin, yet robust walls and tight-edge radii of just 1 to 2 mm. SaphirKeramik is part of the successful cooperation between Italian-design company Kartell and LAUFEN. Their jointly created collection is called “Kartell by Laufen.”
2012 LAUFEN celebrates 120 years of Swiss bathroom culture with an impressive installation at the Fuorisalone in Milan.
2010 LAUFEN develops from a sanitary ware producer to a "total bathroom manufacturer." Today, LAUFEN's portfolio offers complete bathroom solutions including ceramics, furniture, bathtubs, shower trays, accessories and faucets.
2009 The LAUFEN Forum opens its doors. The LAUFEN Forum is more than just a showroom, it is the brand hub of the company. Located at LAUFEN's headquarters in Laufen, its unique concept of design and sustainable architecture, has deemed it an architectural masterpiece that has been recognized with several renowned design awards during the past few years. In addition to the displays of the very latest product designs, several temporary exhibitions and events related to topics of bath and architecture, attract visitors and demonstrate the values of LAUFEN as a brand.
2007 The oldest faucet manufacturer of Switzerland, Similor (founded by Charles Kugler in 1854), was acquired and two years later, the faucet factory went into operation in Laufen, producing LAUFEN faucets.
2002 LAUFEN invests significantly into its central European production capacity, as well as into international product development with designer collaborations. The first one piece floorstanding washbasin, designed by Stefano Giovannoni (ILBAGNOALESSI One) and launched in 2002, is an example of LAUFEN's cooperation between design and development.
1999 LAUFEN joins the ROCA Group (at the time, the second largest producer of sanitary ware worldwide).
1991 In the 1990s, LAUFEN expands its production capacity further, by acquiring additional factories in Czech Republic. Today, LAUFEN’s production plants are well established in central Europe.
1990 LAUFEN puts a higher focus on design: Porsche Design is the first global cooperation partner for LAUFEN.
1980 LAUFEN develops the revolutionary Pressure-Casting method; a technology that sets new standards for the entire industry by reducing production time significantly. LAUFEN increases its productivity, capacity and product range.
1967 Two traditional production sites, Wilhelmsburg and Gmunden in Austria, join the group.
1964 Xaver Jermann, a LAUFEN employee, invents the first wall-hung toilet.
1959 Fritz Lischka creates the renowned design washbasin, called "Ultra."
1952 LAUFEN expands and starts its first international activities by acquiring the first factory in Brazil.
1950 LAUFEN invents its first ceramic combination toilet with integrated ventilation system.
1925 LAUFEN enters the sanitary ware business and becomes the first and sole producer of bathroom ceramics in Switzerland.
1895 LAUFEN's classic design sense has been present from day one, as evidenced by the detail of its earliest products, such as the "Nautilus" toilet.
1892 The ceramic factory LAUFEN is founded and starts producing tiles and bricks.