With the business selling tools of all kinds, the engineer laid the foundations for the long-term success of the company, which entered the mechanical engineering sector in 1898 with the production of cold circular saws for metal cutting and the manufacture of blade skiving and thread cutting machines. In 1900 Hermann Heller’s brother Ernst, a trained tradesman, joined the company, marking the birth of “Gebr. Heller Werkzeug- und Maschinenfabrik” in Nürtingen.
In the 1960’s Hubert and Berndt Heller took over the management of the machine factory and developed the company into an internationally successful group of companies with numerous locations in all major markets–including the production plants in England (Redditch) and Brazil (Sorocaba), which will be celebrating their 50th anniversaries this year.
However, not all was plain sailing for HELLER. “The era of the economic miracle was over and we now had to assert ourselves in the field of tension between economic fluctuations and tougher competition”, recalls Berndt Heller, HELLER’s long-standing CEO and former chairman of the supervisory board, at the beginning of his management career in the family business. The brothers’ instinct for innovation was the key to success in difficult times and times of crisis. With the development of modular machining centers and Flexible System Transferlines (FST) in the 1990’s they led the company out of one of the most serious crises in its history, putting it back on track. “We achieved this with the help of our employees who have always given their best– even in what has been sometimes difficult circumstances. They deserve my utmost respect and have played an important role in the company’s 130-year history”, Heller continues.
To this day the Heller family has maintained the spirit of a family-run business with a strong sense of tradition. Since 2016 all shares in the group have been wholly owned by the family. Berndt Heller’s children, Nicole Pfleiderer and Marc Heller, are shareholders in the company. The group is currently managed by Dr. Thorsten Schmidt (CEO), Andreas Müßigmann (CFO), Dieter Drechsler (COO) and Peter Weber (CSO).