Only very rarely - as one might expect - has Napoleon’s trade policy played a part in the corporate records of companies which are still in business today. But with Koh-I-Noor, which was named after a famous diamond and whose headquarters are now located in Prague, this is actually the case.
The company was founded in Vienna as a pencil factory in 1790. Joseph Hardtmuth had succeeded in manufacturing pencil leads from a mixture of clay and graphite powder. Up to that point, pencil leads had to be cut out in one piece from larger chunks of graphite, which were generally imported from England. Due to the continental blockade imposed by Napoleon in 1806, trade between England and the European continent came to a standstill. This marked the beginning of the meteoric rise of Koh-I-Noor as a pencil manufacturer, already with a global presence. After the founder's death, the production was relocated for economic reasons to České Budějovice.
In its present form, Koh-I-Noor is still a major producer of pencils and crayons and other drawing utensils, but it has now established itself in three additional business segments as well. With 160 million Euros in annual sales, the group employs a total workforce of 2,300 associates.
The Koh-I-Noor Formex Division with its production facility in Brno, Czech Republic, is active in the automotive sector and has earned an excellent reputation as a mold making and injection molding company. On 23 injection molding machines with clamping forces ranging from 100 to 400 t - including several 2-component machines - the company currently produces various automotive parts, among them some extremely sensitive items such as lenses.
Virtually all the injection molding machines are equipped with W818, W821 and W831 robots from Wittmann. These models offer load capacities between 6 and 12 kg, with virtually unlimited scope for extending the robots' functionalities with the comprehensive range of optional equipment available. The modular mechanical structure of the Wittmann robots allows for a great variety of different axis lengths, so that the appliances can be optimally adjusted to each machine size. The universally applicable R8 robot control system is specially appreciated at Koh-I-Noor Formex. Thanks to its easy operation, the startup and implementation of standard processes proceed smoothly and without any problems, which also applies to the programming of any desired robot sequences and direct integration of automation systems in the robot’s control system.
On 30 May 2018, representatives from Wittmann Battenfeld CZ, the Czech subsidiary of the Wittmann Group, were privileged to deliver two more W818 robots to Koh-I-Noor Formex. The somewhat "more formal" character of this delivery was due to the very special serial number of the Wittmann R8.3 robot control system also delivered on this occasion, the 20,000th of its kind. The control system was commissioned and started up in the presence of the top management team of Koh-I-Noor Formex - Dr. Robert Zaboj, the company owner and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Koh-I-Noor Machinery a.s., Dr. Vlastislav Briza, Member of the Board of Directors of the Koh-I-Noor Holding a.s., and Jiri Munzar, Managing Director of Koh-I-Noor Formex.
Apart from robots, Koh-I-Noor Formex also operates numerous peripheral appliances from Wittmann, such as temperature controllers, dryers and material loaders.
Source: Wittmann Group
Koh-I-Noor relies on robots from Wittmann