GEA Group

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GEA Group AG
Publicly traded limited company
Traded asFWBG1A
ISINDE0006602006 Edit this on Wikidata
IndustryFood industry
Founded1881; 139 years ago (1881)
HeadquartersDüsseldorf, Germany
Key people
Stefan Klebert (CEO), Dr. Helmut Perlet (Chairman of the Supervisory Board),[1]Markus A. Ketter (Chief Financial Officer),[2] Steffen Bersch (Member of the Executive Board),[3]
Revenue€4,828 million (2018)[4]
€518 million (2018)[4]
Number of employees

GEA Group AG (Gesellschaft für Entstaubungsanlagen; from 2000 to 2005: mg technologies AG, before 2000: Metallgesellschaft), headquartered in Düsseldorf, Germany. In 2018, GEA generated consolidated revenues of around EUR 4.8 billion. The food and beverages sector, which enjoys long-term sustainable growth, accounted for around 70 percent of this total. The company is listed on the German MDAX (G1A, WKN 660 200), the STOXX® Europe 600 Index and selected MSCI Global Sustainability Indexes.[4]

Business & Industries[edit]

Since June 2015, GEA Group operates under a new integrated group structure,[5] which unifies country organizations and brings together the operational sales and service activities into one organization at a country level. Industries GEA focuses on:

  • Beverages: manufacturing and preparing juice, syrup, soft drinks, drink concentrates, coffee, tea, soy drinks, spirits, wine and beer.
  • Chemical: mechanical and thermal separation, melt & solutions crystallization, drying & particle processing, exhaust gas cleaning, treating effluents, recovering by-products, increasing yield, controlling emissions, improving energy efficiency.
  • Food: preparing, separating, further processing, preserving, chilling, packaging and freezing meat, poultry, fish, seafood, oils and fats, fruit, vegetables, dairy products, bread, confectionery and food ingredients.
  • Dairy Farming: animal feeding, barn equipment, farm management, hygiene & supplies, manure management, milk cooling & storage, milking, young-stock solutions.
  • Dairy Processing: design, engineer complete plants, processing lines and equipment for raw milk treatment and manufacturing, filling & packaging milk and milk-based products - from butter, ice cream, yogurt and cheese to infant formula, milk powder and whey and its derivatives.
  • Pharma: solid and liquid dose technology. Batch and continuous granulation, drying, pelletizing and coating, contained materials handling, tablet compression, freeze-drying, fermentation and liquid formulation, separation, homogenization and cell disruption.
  • Marine: high performance equipment for treating fuel oil, lube oil, bilge water and ballast water, air-conditioning, refrigeration and freezing technology.
  • Lan-based transportation: refrigeration and cooling technology.
  • Oil & Gas: refrigeration and cooling technology, separation, vacuum technology, air conditioning and chilling.
  • Environment: waste water treatment, engineering solutions for recovering chemicals, recycling heat and conserving solutions, emission reduction systems, flue gas cleaning technologies and the use of natural refrigerants in industrial refrigeration and air cooling
  • Power: high-performance centrifugal separators and systems to handle and treat liquid fuels and lube oil in diesel engine and gas turbine-based power plants. Centrifugal purifiers shield diesel engines and gas turbines, compressors for cooling fuel gas and for carbon capture storage, spray absorption process to remove sulfur and other toxic materials from exhaust gases, thermal oil treatment solution for solar power plants.
  • Distribution & Storage: cooling and freezing technology
  • Leisure & Sport: freezing technology with the use of natural refrigerant ammonia for ice rinks, bobsled tracks and snow.


The ancestor of today’s GEA AG was Metallgesellschaft AG (MG), established as a metal trading company in 1881 in Germany. Between 1881 and 1914, MG was already represented on all continents, and invested in mines and metallurgical plants. Due to World War I, it lost a large proportion of foreign investments and started chemical trading. In 1920, Gesellschaft für Entstaubungsanlagen (GEA) was founded by Otto Happel, to produce de-dusting equipment. Due to World War II, MG’s and GEA’s production facilities suffered an extensive destruction. Production started up again with about 70 employees in a small, undamaged building a few weeks after the war ended. At that time, many business transactions--including salaries--were barter deals. While reconstruction work progressed in the following years, the company was hit hard once again. The day after Christmas in 1948, GEA's founder Otto Happel died. His widow, Elisabeth Happel just eleven months earlier, took over the company's management. In the late 1940s and early 1950s, reconstruction of power plants helped GEA get back on track.[6]

Following the reconstructions, numerous innovations ensured the future of the company. In 1989, GEA went public and an era of expansion and globalization started. 1991-1995 GEA executed several acquisitions including Grasso, Niro, Westfalia Separator and Tuchenhagen. MG also made a key decision with the acquisition of Dynamit Nobel AG, which resulted in entering the chemical industry.

The 1990 oil price shock caused oil-business loss in the US, which pushed MG into crisis. MG answered with a fundamental realignment marking the transition to an innovative focus technology group. Restructuring entailed a divestment of around 300 group companies and set the focus on chemicals and engineering.

In 1999, Metallgesellschaft acquired GEA AG and in 2000 was renamed to mg technologies ag.[7] In 2003, the enterprise went through another strategic reorganization to specialize in special purpose machinery with a focus on process engineering, components and plant engineering.

2005 brought important changes again in the form of selling the Dynamit Nobel Plastics business unit and renaming the company to GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft. The reorganization did not stop there. In 2015, the “OneGEA” project was introduced, implementing a new integrated group structure with two main business areas as “Equipment” and “Solutions” as well as a uniform country organization. The technology portfolio expanded with the acquisitions of CMT, Comas and Hilge.[8]

Environmental Policy[edit]

GEA’s key environmental objectives focus on energy saving, waste and emission reducing solutions, recognizing the importance of sustainable economy and development. The environmental parameters subject to monitoring are the following: emissions, energy consumption, hazardous goods handling, water-polluting agents, waste, noise, waste water/water consumption.

GEA is an alliance member of ”Blue Competence”,[9] an initiative of the German Engineering Association (VDMA). The members of the initiative have pledged to develop and/or promote sustainable engineering solutions in harmony with economic, ecological, and societal needs. It counts almost 400 alliance members.

Social Responsibility[edit]

The company has a corporate policy in place in terms of quality, health, safety & environment to ensure the general well-being of its employees. In order to implement this policy, several organizational units have installed management systems certified in accordance with ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 and/or ISO 50001.

GEA uses a so-called Integrity System,[10] through which employees and external third parties are given the possibility to directly report compliance issues or violations of the general principles of social corporate responsibility (Code of Conduct), which was adopted in 2007 together with its European Works Council. This system allows anonymous reporting when it is permitted in the country in question. It comprises only reporting categories that embrace a substantial risk to the company, its employees and all other stakeholders. Likewise, GEA welcomes the principles of the UN Global Compact initiative.


GEA has an official diversity policy together with a diversity strategy in place, which manifests in a mix of measures designed to promote diversity. One of GEA’s objectives is to attract more women while including a higher number of talented female employees, resulting in the current proportion of women being ca. 18% of the workforce. In terms of the international composition of its workforce, GEA employs more than 70% different nationalities.


  1. ^ "Supervisory Board". Retrieved 30 March 2017.
  2. ^ "Executive Board". Retrieved 9 January 2020.
  3. ^ "Executive Board". Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  4. ^ a b c d "Annual Report 2018" (PDF). p. 3. Retrieved 14 March 2019.
  5. ^ "GEA Group AG launches new group structure". Reuters. Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  6. ^ "GEA History". Retrieved 30 March 2017.
  7. ^ "GEA History". Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  8. ^ "GEA acquisitions". Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  9. ^ "Blue Competence". Retrieved 30 March 2017.
  10. ^ "Compliance". Retrieved 30 March 2017.