Reinhold Würth – The entrepreneur and his company

Adolf Würth and Reinhold Würth taking a walk through the woods

Adolf Würth and Reinhold Würth taking a walk through the woods

The Würth Group started out as screw wholesale business in 1945. The company’s history is inseparably connected with the entrepreneur Prof. Reinhold Würth. Under his direction, the company turned into the market leader in the sale of assembly and connecting materials.

The beginnings were modest: In summer 1945, Adolf Würth founded a screw wholesale business in Künzelsau/Baden-Württemberg. His son Reinhold accompanied and helped him from the very beginning. On 1 October 1949, he officially joined the business as the company’s second employee and first apprentice.

Packing of handcart in the 1950s

Packing of handcart in the 1950s

In January 1951, it was the first time that he went out on a sales trip alone. The 15-year old youngster was supposed to look for new customers in Düsseldorf. In 1952, he completed his commercial training. When Adolf Würth died at the age of 45 in 1954, Reinhold Würth took over the business at the age of 19. At that time, the company was a twoman business with annual sales of EUR 80,000.

Reinhold Würth managed the company with farsightedness, which was soon crowned by first success. In 1962, the first foreign subsidiary was set up in the Netherlands, followed by company foundations in Switzerland, Austria, Italy and further countries. In 1969, Reinhold Würth dared to cross the Atlantic Ocean to North America. One year later, Würth also became active in South Africa. The formation of companies in Australia (1982) as well as Japan and Malaysia (both in 1987) rounded off Würth‘s presence on all continents.

Bettina Würth mit ihrem Vater Reinhold Würth

Bettina Würth mit ihrem Vater Reinhold Würth

In 1994, Reinhold Würth withdrew from operative business and took the chair of the Advisory Board of the Würth Group. On 1 March 2006, his daughter Bettina Würth became his successor in this position. Reinhold Würth continues being the Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Würth Group’s Family Trusts.

From the first day on, the Würth Group has been a family business in spite of its international character. In the meantime, the Group has 65,000 employees worldwide on the payroll. Direct selling has always been the driving force behind the company’s success. 30,000 sales reps worldwide visit 300,000 customers each day. Thanks to the direct customer contact the company knows the requirements and can adjust its products and services in such a way that some of the load is taken off the customers’ shoulders. One of Prof. Reinhold Würth’s mottos is: “Satisfying our customers is not enough – we want to inspire them!”