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Anniversary: 130 years of Bosch – a success story From workshop to global player

Source | LinkedIn | Amir Habibi | Business Process Expert at Robert Bosch GmbH

Stuttgart, Germany – It doesn’t exactly read like a success story. Opened in November 1886, growth from 2 to just 15 associates by 1891. That same year, the initial capital stock is almost depleted, Bosch has to ask his mother to be a guarantor, takes out additional bank loans, and reaches the verge of insolvency in 1892. A lot has happened since then. Today, Bosch employs around 375,000 associates and generates annual sales of 70.6 billion euros. The former Workshop for Precision Mechanics and Electrical Engineering has become one of Germany’s ten largest enterprises, and operates in more than 150 countries. Truly a success story.

Inspiration from the U.S.

Even in his younger years, being open for new developments and opening up new markets was important to Bosch as an entrepreneur. At the age of just 23, he ventured across the Atlantic, traveling to the U.S. to work with Edison and gain insights into electrical engineering. At the time, electrical engineering was further advanced in the U.S. than in Europe, and Bosch hoped to be able to use the new inspiration to establish a promising business back in Germany.

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