GDP|GUHDO History, part 2

Screen Shot 2013-01-15 at 12.51.17 PMRemscheid, Germany, has a world wide reputation for being the center of precision tool manufacturing. It was in this town in 1908 that brothers Gustav and Hugo Doerken founded a company to manufacture precision tools for the woodworking industry. They named their company GUHDO, a combination of their first and last name initials.

After World War II, due to the untimely deaths of both founders, the leadership of GUHDO became the responsibility of young Herbert Doerken, the son of founder, Hugo Doerken. Despite all the setbacks that occurred as a result of two world wars, under Herbert’s leadership GUHDO was able to grow and prosper. Herbert’s management philosophy was to provide quality tooling at a reasonable price, and to deliver what the customers wanted, when they wanted it! In the tooling business, Herbert may well have been the inventor of “Just in time!”.

Herbert’s management style was one of great flexibility, which allowed progress and expansion to occur almost naturally. During Herbert’s tenure, GUHDO France and GUHDO USA were established and GUHDO became a leading German exporter of industrial woodworking tools and machine knives to all continents of the world.

Herbert passed away in 1995, leaving the company to his widow. In 2005 the GUHDO group underwent a restructuring which split the GUHDO family into separate, independent entities. Despite separate ownership, the GUHDO entities work very closely together and continue a relationship that serves the overall good of their worldwide customer base.


Today, GUHDO USA has a solid position in the North American market and enjoys a loyal customer base, not only in the wood industry, but also other niche markets that require specialty cutting tool applications, such as the printed circuit board industry, teflon skiving, commutator manufacturing and others.


GDP|GUHDO History, part 1

GUHDO was founded in 1908 in Remscheid, Germany and has maintained it’s image as the sharper tooling company over a century later! This first picture shows the GUHDO factory at its original location in Remscheid, Germany in the early 1960’s, as indicated by the type of cars out front.   In 1967 the factory was relocated to nearby Wermelskirchen.  The name GUHDO, by the way, was derived from the founders of the company, Gustav & Hugo Doerken.

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The  picture below was  taken a few years later, around 1969.  It shows the GUHDO-Export department at work.   True to the time period, the work ethic was focused on detailed performance that followed strict instructions. The head of department sat in the front of the room, facing the other employees. Basically the whole department was set up in a similar manner as a classroom would be.

Also, note the now rather antiquated telephones and typewriters and the sparse, yet oddly interesting wall decorations.  A clutter free work environment!

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The photo below shows GUHDO Werk entrance in 1986, the same year  GUHDO USA was established.  GUHDO USA remained a sister company of GUHDO Werk, Wermelskirchen until 2005, when GUHDO USA became independent.

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