Durkopp Adler

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Dürkopp Adler AG
FounderCarl Baer, Heinrich Koch, Nikolaus Dürkopp
HeadquartersBielefeld, Germany
Key people
Michael Kilian (CEO)
€142 Mio
Number of employees
1321 (2015)
ParentShangGong Group Co.

Durkopp Adler is a German manufacturer of material handling systems and industrial sewing machines that are used in the manufacture of garment and upholstery.[1] It is headquartered in Bielefeld, Germany. The firm is a result of a merger in 1990 between Koch Adler Nahmaschinenwerke and Durkoppwerke. It has operations in nearly 10 countries and has 11 subsidiaries.[2]

The firm's equity is largely controlled by ShangGong Company of China.


The firm has a history of automobile, ball bearings and motorcycle production but both Kochs Adler and Durkopp's history began with sewing machines. Durkoppwerke's history began in 1867 when Heinrich Durkopp, who had earlier completed building a sewing machine on his own co-founded Durkopp and Schmidt with a colleague, Carl Schmidt.[3] The firm later dropped Schmidt from its name. Operating out of the backroom of a clock-maker's factory, the new firm made both household and industrial sewing machines. As the business profile became enhanced among local customers, the firm moved to a new building close to market street, Bielefeld in 1870. The company expanded sales to other regions in Germany and introduced specialized machines for shoe-making. In 1885, it began production of bicycles and ball bearings which were an early success. During its early period, Durkopp experimented with many mechanical ideas and products, led by its founder, the firm began automobile production introducing a successful product, Knipperdolling to the market in 1906. The firm has produced three wheeled and two wheeled motorcycles. After World War I, the firm's debt profile grew and fell under the receivership of banks who went on to sell its automobile unit to Mercedes Benz. During the Second World War, the firm produced cylindrical bearings for tanks and weapons.[3] Those products were jettisoned after the war and the firm went back to its core products, making sewing machines, conveyor belts, bicycles and motorcycles.[3] By the 1962, the firm concentrated on making sewing machines and conveyor belts for the garment industry. In 1990, it merged with Koch Adler, another Bielefeld based industrial sewing machine manufacturer that was founded in 1860.


  1. ^ "Germany: Durkopp Adler's online videos are a hit in the market". 2014-07-08. Retrieved 2018-07-21.
  2. ^ "Chronicle of Durkopp Adler". www.duerkopp-adler.com. Retrieved 2018-07-22.
  3. ^ a b c Ferrara, Miranda; Pederson, Jay (2004). "Dürkopp Adler AG". International directory of company histories. Vol. 65. 65. Chicago, Ill.: St. James Press. ISBN 9781558626423. OCLC 769042327.