Company History

1867
Wilhelm Schmitz-Scholl establishes the company under the name Wilh. Schmitz-Scholl. Its registered purpose is the wholesale of colonial goods of all kinds and the import of coffee and tea.
1882
The first company-owned coffee roasting factory goes into operation.
1887
Wilhelm Schmitz-Scholl dies at the age of 56. The company passes into the hands of his two sons – Karl and Wilhelm Schmitz-Scholl.
1887
Karl and Wilhelm Schmitz-Scholl assume the running of the company.
1893
The company Kaffee-Import-Geschäft Emil Tengelmann is registered in the city of Bochum and opens its first store in Düsseldorf.
1906
Wilhelm Schmitz-Scholl leaves his executive position and sets up the Rheinische Zuckerwarenfabrik confectioners in Düsseldorf. Karl becomes the sole managing director.
1912
The company launches production at the cacao and chocolate factory in Mülheim-Speldorf.
1914
Tengelmann operates 560 stores selling food, drink and tobacco, and household goods for everyday use. However, it loses more than 160 stores through World War I.
1933
Karl Schmitz-Scholl dies at the age of 64. The company passes in equal parts to the hands of his daughter Elisabeth Haub and his son Karl Schmitz-Scholl, who assumes the position of sole managing partner.
1933
Karl Schmitz-Scholl Jr. becomes the sole managing partner, while his sister Elisabeth Haub, née Schmitz-Scholl, is partner.
1953
The first Tengelmann self-service supermarket opens in Munich’s Leopoldstraße.
1965
Tengelmann reworks its brand image. U.S. motivational researchers develop a contemporary concept and designer Gianninoto creates the Tengelmann logo in the form of a stylised fountain. This logo is still used today.
1966
The Tenga sales format is introduced: discount stores that work with a limited range of products and a simple store layout.
1967
The first Grosso store is opened. Its range of products is expanded beyond food, drink and tobacco goods.
1968
Elisabeth Haub lays the foundation for the company’s environmental protection activities by establishing the Karl-Schmitz-Scholl Fund.
1968
The year of our 75th anniversary is the first year sales exceed the one billion German mark threshold.
1969
Karl Schmitz-Scholl passes away without children. His nephew, Erivan Haub, becomes the sole managing partner of the Schmitz-Scholl/Tengelmann Group.
1969
Erivan Haub becomes the sole managing partner of the Schmitz-Scholl/Tengelmann Group.
1971
The Group acquires Kaiser’s Kaffee-Geschäft AG, based in Viersen.
1972
The brand discounter Plus is launched with the motto “Prima leben und sparen” (Live well and save).
1972
The first step abroad is taken with the acquisition of the Austrian company LÖWA Warenhandelgesellschaft mbH.
1979
The Group invests in the US chain The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company, Inc., Montvale, New Jersey, and gradually increases its holdings to become majority shareholder.
1984
Environmental protection activities are expanded across the national network of stores under the in-house environmental label of the frog and turtle.
1985
The Group begins to strategically diversify by gaining a majority share in OBI do-it-yourself stores.
1985
The Dutch Hermans Groep is consolidated into the Group network.
1989
The Group invests in Skála-Coop, Budapest, which is the largest private retail chain in Hungary.
1990
The Group enters the textile business by acquiring Modea.
1992
The company Wilh. Schmitz-Scholl (Wissoll) celebrates its 125th anniversary.
1993
Tengelmann celebrates its 100th anniversary. The year of our anniversary is also the first year in which sales surpass the 50 billion German Mark threshold. This makes the Group one of the largest food retail chains in the world.
1994
KiK Textilien and Non-Food GmbH are established and open their first stores.
1997
The brand discounter Plus celebrates its 25-year anniversary.
2000
Erivan Haub transfers the responsibility for operations to his sons Karl-Erivan W. and Christian W. E. Haub and assumes the position of Group CEO.
2001
Kaiser’s Kaffee-Geschäft AG and Emil Tengelmann GmbH merge to become Kaiser’s Tengelmann AG.
2002
Legal form changes from a general partnership to a limited commercial partnership. The company changes its name to Tengelmann Warenhandelsgesellschaft KG.
2003
Tengelmann Group withdraws from chocolate production. Wissoll is sold to the confectioners van Netten GmbH.
2003
OBI enters expansion phase: First OBI hardware and DIY stores open in various locations, including Russia.
2005
Plus continues to expand abroad. The first discount stores open in Romania and Greece.
2007
Expansion shifts to Eastern Europe, with KiK opening its first stores in Slovenia and the Czech Republic, and OBI opening stores in Croatia.
2008
The Tengelmann Klimamarkt, Germany’s first carbon-neutral supermarket, opens in Mülheim an der Ruhr where the company is based.
2008
Plus begins to divest its foreign subsidiaries, transferring the property to the newly established Trei Real Estate.
2009
Plus Warenhandels GmbH merges with Edeka’s subsidiary Netto Marken-Discount GmbH & Co. OHG.
2009
Germany’s Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel visits the company headquarters in Mülheim an der Ruhr.
2010
Kaiser's Tengelmann GmbH relocates its headquarters from Viersen to Mülheim an der Ruhr and changes its legal form from a stock corporation to a limited liability company; the Group withdraws from the Rhine-Main-Neckar region.
2010
The Group begins to get involved with e-commerce and invests in young start-ups, incl. brands4friends, Zalando, baby-markt.de, Otto Gourmet, Stylight.
2010
The US subsidiary The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, Inc. (A&P) files for Chapter 11 protection from creditors. Tengelmann withdraws from this engagement.
2011
The Group increases its involvement in e-commerce. It invests further in this area, including in Coffee Circle, Canimix, Lieferheld und MAC IT-Solutions.
2011
TEDi expands into Austria and opens its first store there in Graz.
2011
As the first textile discounter, KiK publishes a CSR report.
2012
A&P successfully concludes the Chapter 11 bankruptcy procedure it began in December 2010. Tengelmann exits from A&P.
2012
Tengelmann bundles its US operations under its American subsidiary Emil Capital Partners LLC and invests in promising young companies, such as BrightFarms LLC.
2012
Tengelmann restructures the real estate activities in Trei Real Estate and integrates its German real estate portfolio. Trei opens its first retail park under the brand name “Vendo Park” in Kyjov, Czech Republic.
2012
The Group increases its involvement in e-commerce further. It invests more in this area, including in Bigfoot 2, BigCommerce und SumUp.
2012
KiK strengthens its chain of stores in Europe and expands into Poland.
2012
The Group celebrates its 100th year in Mülheim an der Ruhr with the theme, “Heimat100 – at home in Speldorf“
2012
The first sustainability report for the site of the Group’s headquarters in Mülheim is published.
2013
Upon turning 80, Erivan Haub resigns from the Group’s governing bodies.
2013
KiK opens its online shop, kik24.de, and begins to sell its product range on the Internet.
2013
The new online shop GartenXXL.de is launched with a comprehensive range of products for the lawn and garden.
2013
Tengelmann supports social enterprise by founding Tengelmann Social Ventures GmbH and investing in Kiddify.
2014
Trei Real Estate expands its portfolio in the long-term and invests in the development of housing projects in the micro-living sector.
2014
Die Plus Online GmbH rebrands to Tengelmann E-Stores GmbH.