It’s been quite a journey for us: from trade workshop, to contract manufacturer, to a fully fledged solutions provider for the manufacture of highly complex turned parts. The key factor in our evolution has been the deeply rooted expertise we have acquired through decades of experience. And our heritage as a traditional, family-run business is what drives that expertise.
Find out more about Leipold’s eventful history in our commemorative centenary publication.
Download commemorative publication as a PDF
In 1919, without a penny of start-up capital to his name, Carl Leipold set up his first workshop. Germany’s Black Forest was already heavily industrialized at the time, and renowned for high-precision engineering. By 1920, Leipold was already taking on trainees.
Carl Leipold (born 1981 in Neustadt an der Orla in Thuringia) in uniform, in 1913
Leipold began applying its expertise in manufacturing turned parts to design optimum manufacturing solutions. To this day, the company produces parts on machines that it has designed in-house.
Plant 1 with living quarters, between 1934 and 1958
Leipold’s introduction of CNC production technology marked the start of the company’s transition to an industrial enterprise. Third-generation family member Dr. Karl-Heinz-Schiefer was the driving force behind this development, which became an integral part of the firm’s manufacturing mix. Today, most of the parts that Leipold makes are produced on CNC machines.
Dr. Karl-Heinz Schiefer (1989)
Leipold was growing – including through acquisitions. Buying HORA-Werk GmbH added a new dimension to the company’s skills base – electromechanical parts specialists. It was not until 2017 that Leipold Group sold off the company.
Leipold tapped into the American market, opening its first international production facility in the U.S. At the site in Windsor, Connecticut, the company mainly manufactures parts for the mobility sector and for general industry. In 2017 Leipold doubled the production area at its U.S. plant.
The Leipold Group continued to grow, with a huge expansion in production capacity after buying Ferdinand Täfler GmbH & Co KG in Dransfeld, Lower-Saxony. Today the subsidiary trades as Carl Leipold GmbH Werk Dransfeld and remains a key part of the Leipold Group.
Pascal Schiefer, the son of former Leipold Managing Director Dr. Karl-Heinz-Schiefer, was already working in the company’s management team and took overall responsibility for the business, becoming Chairman of the Board at our family-run business.
With a high level of precision know-how, in-depth manufacturing knowledge and decades of turning expertise, Leipold had made the transition from contract manufacturer to precision-engineering solutions provider. The company marked this major milestone with a new corporate identity as “The Precision Group”.
“The wellspring of Leipold’s vitality is here in the Black Forest,” says Pascal Schiefer. The company’s trade fair stands paint a clear picture of its down-to-earth character, with wood in abundance, and references to Black Forest traditions and virtues.
As a precision-engineering solutions provider, Leipold continuously improves its expertise, bringing previously outsourced processes back in-house and automating quality assurance. Leipold bases its manufacturing on groundbreaking and sustainable materials. In 2016 the company entered the aerospace market.
A big commemoration for a big future: at the head office in Wolfach, the Leipold Group celebrated its centenary in style. Our structures are in place along the whole value chain, says Pascal Schiefer: “Based on experience, the most successful business relationships are those where customers involve Leipold from the very outset of the project.”