A half century of Thieme

courageous decisions, ground-breaking innovations, earned successes

50 years ago, precisely on June 1, 1960, Werner Thieme established Thieme GbR on a very small scale. With two business areas – polyurethane and printing systems – and 350 employees, the Thieme Group today is achieving yearly sales of around 43 million Euro. In South Baden alone, this independent second generation family enterprise employs around 320 workers.





June 2010 – The Thieme locations of 1960 and today
From a backyard workshop to a globally recognised enterprise: The current Thieme headquarters are in Teningen only a few miles from it origins.
(Photo: THIEME GmbH & Co. KG of Teningen)

Special distinguishing feature: flexibility! Thus, Thieme adapts to the market requirements at all times. Richness of ideas, the power of implementation, readiness to take risks and the frequently quoted "lucky hand" characterize the Werner Thieme of yesterday and his son Frank of today and have allowed that which began in a tiny backyard of Emmendingen to advance into an internationally established and recognised enterprise. Even today, at the age of 82, the company founder Werner Thieme exudes pioneer spirit and zest for action. In the best sense, he has always been conservative only concerning the topic of location: Throughout the decades he has stayed true to his home in Breisgau – today's headquarters are only a few miles from their origins. Additionally, Thieme also has sales and service locations in France, Great Britain and in the USA.


From contract manufacturer to globally leading specialists in the plastic and screen printing market
It all began with the contract manufacturing of machine components. This advanced to specialised machines and in 1965 to a second business area – the Thieme plastics. Starting in 1972, this developed into the specialisation in high-quality moulded parts of polyurethane (PUR) and ten years later the integration of energy absorbers for the automobile industry. Today, Thieme is recognised as one of the globally leading specialists for high-quality moulded and functional parts made from PUR and other plastics.


In 1976, Thieme started production of screen printing machines. Here too, the ambitious enterprise succeeded in just a few years in advancing from an outsider to a leading supplier and finally to a technology and market leader. Today the large format multi-colour lines of the THIEME 5000 series are part of the Nonplus ultra for graphic applications and Thieme has also developed a multitude of solutions for the area of technical screen printing including those for the photovoltaic industry. With the innovative printing machine M-Press Tiger, Thieme recently entered the digital printing market with success.


In 2002, Frank Thieme became the principle shareholder of the company, a position which he has since carried out with the same conscientiousness as his father in order to further manage the company with the same level of success as in the past 50 years.


Overview: Significant milestones in the company history

1960: Founding of the company
Begin with the contract manufacturing of machine components.


1965: Start of plastic activities
Based on the production of machine components of fibre-glass reinforced plastics, Thieme has been specialising in the production of high-quality polyurethane (PUR) moulded parts since 1972. Ten years later, this was followed by the integration of energy absorbers for the automobile industry. Today, Thieme is recognised as one of the globally leading specialists for high-quality moulded and functional parts made from polyurethane and other plastics.




1976: Production start – screen printing machines
Thieme laid the basis for a product of its own which was actively and consistently advanced while adapting to the demands of the market. Over a period of 30 years, market leadership was achieved in the flat bed screen-printing machine market, which formed the decisive basis for the developments towards the digital printing market made in the past few years.


1990: Foundation of THIEME SAS, France
THIEME SAS, which is headquartered today in Illkirch-Graffenstaden near Strasbourg, was established for the direct support of the French customers. It focuses on sales and service for the products in the important French market.


1995: Establishment of the THIEME Corporation in St. Charles (Illinois, USA)
Fifteen years ago, Thieme succeeded in "crossing the big pond". Initially established as a pure sales subsidiary for screen printing machines, the THIEME Corporation today also produces PUR moulded parts. As development and supply partner, particularly in collaboration with the internationally positioned customers, this is an essential factor.


2005: Start of digital printing
Based on many years of experience in screen printing, Thieme also succeeded in making a highly regarded premiere in the sector of digital printing: In cooperation with AGFA Graphics, the technically leading digital printing machine "M-Press" was created, which was developed in the past few years in close contact with customers and successfully launched on the market.



2006: Expansion of the business sector plastics by building their own painting system
In 2006, as the greatest single investment in the company up to now, Thieme built its own highly automated painting system, with which the comprehensive market and customer demands for superior environmentally friendly surface finishing using water-based painting systems are now being implemented. Moreover, this investment can be seen as a clear commitment to the Teningen location.



Thieme – quo vadis?
"Of decisive importance in our fast-living world of today is the organization of the company which must also secure success in the future," states Frank Thieme with confidence. For the Teninger company, this means on the one hand to maintain the proven flexibility of the past in order to actively approach the new market demands. On the other hand, company director Frank Thieme places more value than ever on solidarity, reliability and predictability for the employees, customers, suppliers, and the company surroundings, such as banks and the community. Both core items determine the thinking and acting of the traditional enterprise: "The confidence achieved by this forms the basis for the continued successful path of our enterprise group in the future", states Frank Thieme.


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THIEME Corporation
3605 Swenson Avenue
St. Charles, IL 60174

Phone +1-630-513-1666
Fax     +1-630-513-1999