Back | 03/26/2018

Greiner Turns 150

In 2018, Greiner is celebrating its 150th anniversary as a family business. The past 150 years have been shaped by entrepreneurial spirit, creative potential, and the courage to pursue new opportunities. And it’s time for Greiner Packaging to take a look back as well.

When Carl Albert Greiner opened a small general store in Nürtingen, Germany, in September 1868, he laid the foundation for the development of the Greiner Group – and thus for Greiner Packaging as well. Today, the company as a whole is a global leader in the plastics and foam industry with more than 10,000 employees at 134 locations around the world. Above all, bold decisions, a visionary outlook, a spirit of innovation, and a keen sense of the market have been the key drivers of the Greiner Group’s success.

  • 1868: Carl Albert Greiner and his wife Emilie open a small general store in Nürtingen.
  • 1870s: Carl Albert makes the switch to cork for sealing bottles of soda water.
  • 1900s: Carl Albert gradually steps back from his company; his sons Theodor, Hermann, Adolf, and Reinhold travel the world and establish new operations in Austria and Spain.
  • 1950s: The natural cork business undergoes a period of transition, while engine seals develop to become a steady source of profit in the pressed cork segment. Foam and injection molding production begins in Nürtingen.
  • 1960s: The birth of Greiner Packaging: Injection molding production begins in Kremsmünster, Austria, and containers for food products develop to become a promising line of business.
  • 1970s: The company invests in Europe’s most state-of-the-art foaming facility of the time in Kremsmünster. Production of yogurt pots reaches unforeseen dimensions.
  • 1980s: With the acquisition of two businesses, extrusion technology becomes a new pillar of the Greiner Group. Growth in the area of food packaging continues.
  • 1990s: Greiner is among the first companies to take full advantage of the opening up of the CEE states, and gradually taps into new markets. The various foam operations are transferred to the Eurofoam joint venture.
  • 2000s: The cork business begins to wind down. Laboratory equipment is off to a strong start in the United States, while Eurofoam continues on its expansion course in Eastern Europe. The family business is led by external management for the first time.
  • 2010s: Greiner Foam International extends its activities outside Europe. Greiner Tool.Tec undergoes restructuring. The BRICS countries become the focus for all divisions of the company. Greiner Packaging gains a foothold in the USA, and Greiner Bio-One rejoins Greiner Holding under new leadership.

Even after 150 years, Greiner remains a family business through and through. Now in its fifth generation, just under 50 people hold shares in the Greiner Group, and the family as a whole consists of well over 100 people. Though scattered across four continents and more than ten countries, family ties serve as an important foundation for the company’s success. The Greiner family of entrepreneurs wants to ensure that the Greiner Group will also remain a 100% family-owned company in the coming generations, play an active role in determining its strategic direction, and unify the system of values shared by the family and the company.

“Over the course of our 150-year history, we have developed from a small general store into a globally leading group of companies with more than 10,000 employees in 30 countries. Entrepreneurial spirit, creative potential, and the courage to pursue new opportunities have played a decisive role in this successful transformation from the very first.”
Axel Kühner, Chairman of the Board of the Greiner Group.

“As part of the Greiner Group, Greiner Packaging also looks back on a long company history. Our experiences over the past 150 years have made us what we are today – but they also serve as the foundation for our future success.”
Manfred Stanek, CEO of Greiner Packaging.