The WELP Group companies can look back on decades and, in some cases, on centuries of experience. And this experience now benefits our customers. It is incorporated into every product that we make. Into every armoured vehicle that we produce. And, of course, into every bullet-proof solution that we create. It forms the basis for our forward-looking advisory services for our customers and for our innovative new developments. So we are proud of our history, and we'd like to show you some of our milestones below.
Multiple elements are forged into a high-power company
WELP Group – The Chronicles
Founding of pgam, a CAD/CAM pioneer
At the age of 23, mechanical engineer Josef A. Marold founds in a small design office in Osnabrück the “Planungsgesellschaft für Automobil- und Maschinenbau mbH”, or “pgam”, for short.
Marold combines his enthusiasm for automotive engineering with his groundbreaking spirit in the field of CAx, making pgam a pioneer in CAD and CAM. Automotive design work has previously been done using perforated plastic sheet and drawing boards.
Relocation to Georgsmarienhütte
The original company premises have grown too small. pgam now has more than a hundred CAD workstations and moves to a new location in Georgsmarienhütte.
In the same year, the first production shop for design, model, prototype and gauge construction is taken over and pgam also broadens its range: the company now not only develops, but also supplies prototypes.
Magnum – the first pgam project
pgam for the first time unveils its very own project, based on the VW Corrado: the Magnum sport station-wagon, with TÜV approval for series production, demonstrates just how innovative the company is. Two prototypes are developed and constructed. pgam has thus extended its development capabilities to road-legal prototypes.
1992 - 1997
Toolmaking starts, pgam becomes a Joint Stock Company
The range grows even further: the production facilities are expanded by toolmaking for prototype tools for sheet-metal shaping and for pre-series injection-moulds.
In addition, Josef A. Marold converts the company into pgam advanced technologies AG (a Joint Stock Company). And it also has a new location in the UK: pgam advanced technologies Limited, UK, is founded.
1997 - 1999
Corporate Supplier Award
In 1997 and 1999, Volkswagen presents pgam with its “Corporate Supplier Award – The Leading Edge”. This is presented for outstanding commitment and excellent achievement in the fields of quality, flexibility, service, innovation and competitiveness.
New Technology Center, investment in injection-moulding machines
The first injection-moulding machines are installed. The foundation stone for series production of plastic components is laid and the range expanded yet again. It now covers development, prototyping, toolmaking and series production.
Start of armoured and bullet-proof vehicles
Wendler Karosseriebau GmbH, with its long tradition, is now acquired. pgam now also offers the construction of armoured and bullet-proof vehicles. Right up to today, WELP Group is based on the specialisations of development, prototyping, toolmaking, series production and armoured and bullet-proof vehicles.
Wendler Karosseriebau was founded in 1840, and was initially a maker of coaches. Special coach-bodies for motor-cars began to be produced in the 1920s. After the Second World War, Wendler resumed its bodywork production for manufacturers such as Maybach, BMW, Horch and Bugatti, now in the contemporary pontoon style. The company came up with the delicate lines of the Porsche Spider and even provided armoured Cadillacs to the Arab king Ibn Saud. In the late 1950s, production was converted primarily to repairs and the construction of utility vehicles and prototypes.
Wendler later concentrated on the restoration of vintage cars and the production of armoured saloons, including stretched versions.
Founding of Farmingtons Group
The newly founded Farmingtons Group continues the business operations of pgam and of the group companies. The setting up of the new group of companies is also reflected in a new Corporate Design.
Continuation of group operations
Nina Welp takes over management of the group.
The “Trabant nT” concept car
A world premiere at the IAA in Frankfurt: initiators Klaus Schindler, Ronald Gerschewski and Nils Poschwatta unveil the “Trabant nT” concept car. This electromobile is recognisable as a Trabant, but has been further developed along contemporary lines and interpreted in a modern format.
New orders rise steeply, and IndiKar therefore expands its capacities in Wilkau-Hasslau. A second building close to the main offices provide a further 7,000 square metres.
Maximum civilian resistance class in bullet-proofing
The WELP F2-TLC900 armoured vehicle, based on a Toyota Land Cruiser 200, demonstrably possesses the highest civilian resistance class in bullet-proofing: the vehicle is certified by the Munich Proof House to conform to Resistance Class VR9/BRV2009. In addition, it also attains certification in accordance with Explosion Resistance Class ERV2010 and the STANAG military resistance standard.
Construction of new Technology Centre for press hardening
A new Technology Centre focussing on forging and press hardening is constructed at Wilkau-Hasslau. This is where “heavy plates” are shaped. They are used not only in the automotive industry, but also for the company’s own armoured and bullet-resistant sector. The level of internal production increases again.
Dressel + Höfner acquired
WELP Group continues to grow: Dressel + Höfner GmbH & Co. KG, based in Neustadt, near Coburg, and Dressel + Höfner International SRL, in Medias (Romania), are acquired. These companies mainly produce plastic components for the automotive industry and white and brown goods for industry.
Dressel + Höfner was founded in 1945, initially specialising in precision-mechanics repairs. It produced its first plastics moulds in 1948, and punching tools and embossing dies were added during subsequent years. The first injection-moulding machine for plastics was commissioned in 1954, with a toolmaking department included in the company’s portfolio as from 1979. Dressel + Höfner International was founded in Medias in 2006.
A new managing partner
Ronald Gerschewski becomes a managing partner at WELP Holding GmbH. Together with Nina Welp, he forms the managerial backbone of the concern.
WELP Group is aiming to reposition itself for the future with the launch of this strategic realignment: In addition to its existing range of diverse services from development and engineering through to production, WELP Group will be offering its customers turnkey solutions from a single source – particularly for small and medium-sized series. The benefits of combining all services under a single roof are clearly apparent thanks to the new brand identity complete with a reimagined portfolio of services based on the company’s core areas of expertise: Supply, Customize and Protect.
In addition to automotive customers, other sectors including new mobility, agriculture, medical technology, security technology, electrical engineering and household goods stand to benefit from the combination and joint expansion of the Group’s core areas of expertise.