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From 1649 to the present

Our over 365-year heritage
From Finnish ironworks to global consumer product business
Merchant Peter Thorwöste founded the Fiskars ironworks for the manufacture of cast iron and forged products
1649
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Fiskars transitioned from an ironworks into a copperworks as copper was found in Orijärvi
1757
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Johan Jacob Julin bought Fiskars ironworks and village. The ironworks were actively developed and production focused on processing iron.
1822
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Fine forging mill founded and cutlery and scissor production begins. Finland’s first machine workshop was established and the workshop produced the first Finnish steamship engine.
1830’s
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With the Death of J.J.Julin is lead by a guardianship and eventually Fiskars becomes a limited company.
1883
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Fiskars shares are listed on the Helsinki Stock Exchange.
1915
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Fiskars grew by acquiring Inha Works in Ähtäri as well as the companies Billnäs Bruk Ab and Oy Ferraria Ab.
1920’s
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Building on expertise in metal, the introduction of plastics through acquisitions and a willingness to experiment leads to Fiskars manufacturing the world’s first plastic handled scissors.
1967
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To keep up with demand and space needed for manufacturing, scissors production is moved from Fiskars to Billnäs.
1973
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Building on the popularity of the orange handled scissors, Fiskars expansion began with the founding of a factory in the United States.
1977
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In line with a focus on consumer goods, Fiskars begins producing Garden tools.
1985
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Fiskars acquires Portland based knife and multi-tool manufacturer, Gerber.
1986
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Fiskars strengthens its position in table setting with the acquisition of Iittala, while Leborgne strengthened the corporation’s garden tools business.
2007
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Fiskars launched its new strategy and since then, has consistently evolved towards a focused and efficient consumer goods company with global ambitions.
2008
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Fiskars acquires Royal Copenhagen and complements the dining offering with fine hand-painted porcelain.
2013
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Fiskars, Finland’s oldest company celebrates 365 years of pride, passion and design.

During the seventeenth century a number of ironworks were founded in Finland. The large tracts of forestland in the Pohja region along with its unharnessed water power and good water routes made it an ideal centre for the Finnish iron industry. The ironworks at Antskog were founded around 1630, and Billnäs followed in 1641. Fiskars was started in 1649, and today is one of the oldest businesses in the western world.

1649 - Fiskars ironworks founded

When the ironworks were founded in Fiskars, Finland was under Swedish rule, and Sweden was one of Europe's biggest producers of iron in the seventeenth century. In 1649, Peter Thorwöste was granted the privilege of setting up a blast furnace and bar hammer in Fiskars and for the manufacture of cast iron and forged products. The iron ore used in Fiskars was mainly brought in from the Utö mine in Stockholm's outer archipelago and most of the bar iron manufactured at the ironworks was shipped to Sweden to be sold on the Iron Market in Stockholm's Old Town. In Fiskars, the iron was also used to make nails, thread, knives, hoes, iron wheels and other things.

Eighteenth century - From ironworks to copperworks

In 1783, the ironworks was taken over by the Björkman family and production focused on processing copper ore from the nearby Orijärvi copper mine. By the nineteenth century there was little copper left to be mined in Orijärvi, so the blast furnace was closed in 1802. Since then there has been no basic iron manufacturing done in Fiskars Village.

1822 - the Julin family era begins in Fiskars

In 1822 the apothecary Johan Jacob Julin (later, von Julin) from Turku bought Fiskars ironworks and village. In his time, the ironworks were actively developed and production focused on processing iron. With the 1832 founding in Fiskars of Finland's first cutlery mill the production range increased from knives to include forks and scissors. In 1837 Fiskars saw another first in Finland, when its machine workshop was founded in the village. In the 1830s, Finland's first steam engine was manufactured at the workshop. The Fiskars tradition of implementing reform and innovation has its roots in this period. Many social reforms also took place during Julin's ownership, during which the ironworks village got its own school and hospital. Farming in the village was greatly improved. Fiskars had a significant influence on the development of Finnish agriculture, and in its day the Fiskars plough workshop manufactured more than a million ploughs. Under Julin's leadership, Fiskars became known for its farm and household implements, and the Fiskars name became synonymous with high quality.

1883 - Fiskars becomes a limited company

On the death of J.J. Julin, the ironworks were lead by a guardianship administration. Little by little the power was amassed by Emil Lindsay von Julin and the limited company Fiskars was founded. 1915 Fiskars was listed at Helsinki Stock Exchange.

1918 - Fiskars grows and develops

The productivity of the ironworks was raised by developing improved methods of processing steel and by renewing the rolling mill at Åminnefors. The product range was expanded and Fiskars founded Finland's first metal spring factory. The company also bought Inha Works in Ähtäri as well as the companies Billnäs Bruks Ab and Oy Ferraria Ab.

1929 - the great stock market crash and the recession

The Finnish economy suffered from the great stock market crash of 1929 and this slowed down expansion at Fiskars. In Finland, the effects of the crash were felt into the mid 1930s. Not until the end of the Second World War did the Fiskars' management team realize its plans for reforming the company structure to accommodate mass production.

1967 - Fiskars manufactures the world's first plastic-handled scissors

The orange-handled scissors are one of Fiskars' best known products. But how was it decided to make the handles of the scissors orange? In 1967 when the first basic models were about to be manufactured the designer wanted the scissors to be black, red or green. As the prototype went into production, the machinist decided to finish off the orange color he had in his machine. This meant prototypes were made in four different colors, of which the orange and black were most popular. A choice had to be made. An internal vote was taken at Fiskars, and the result gave birth to Fiskars orange-handled scissors. 

Fiskars has registered the color orange in scissors in Finland, the United States and Canada.

1977 - Fiskars scissors factory founded in the USA

Fiskars' expansion began with the founding of a scissors factory in the United States. Setting up in the strongest economy in the world, the US, proved to be a successful choice. It has provided a basis for international trade, a growing market and valuable commercial and professional experience.

Twenty-first century

In the twenty-first century, Fiskars has focused on consumer products and grown through acquisitions. The acquisition of Iittala in 2007 strengthened Fiskars position in kitchenware, while Leborgne strengthened the Corporation's garden tools business. The acquisition of Royal Copenhagen in 2013 complemented Fiskars dining offering with fine hand-painted porcelain and strengthened the company in the Nordic countries and in Asia. In 2015, Fiskars acquired the WWRD group of companies (WWRD) and its portfolio of iconic luxury home and lifestyle brands, which include Waterford, Wedgwood, Royal Doulton, Royal Albert and Rogaška.

Since 2008 Fiskars has consistently evolved towards a focused and efficient integrated consumer goods company. 

Fiskars today

Fiskars serves consumers and customers around the world with a brand portfolio of globally recognized brands including Fiskars, Gerber, Iittala, Royal Copenhagen, Waterford, and Wedgwood. Building on our mission to create a family of iconic lifestyle brands, Fiskars’ vision is to create a positive, lasting impact on our quality of life.

Fiskars is listed on Nasdaq Helsinki.

 


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Fiskars village as shown in a lithograph by P.A. Kruskopf from 1848.


The eldest son of Johan and Albertina Julin was born on August 5, 1787. He was baptized Johan Jacob Julin but always used the name John. He was ennobled in 1849, and his time proved one of the most important stages in the history of the ironworks. Oil painting by J.E. Lindh.


Share certificate number 377, subscribed for by Albert von Julin.


Fine forgers began their training at an early age. Interior at the Fiskars cutlery mill early 20th century.


In the 1960s, plastic was a promising material of tomorrow. The shell of the Fiskars liquidizer was plastic (in production 1965–70) and the tableware was made in the 1962–73 period. The production of the orange-handled scissors started in 1967.


The Fiskars Campus, founded in 2010, is located in Arabianranta district, Helsinki, Finland.


Fiskars village as shown in a lithograph by P.A. Kruskopf from 1848.


The eldest son of Johan and Albertina Julin was born on August 5, 1787. He was baptized Johan Jacob Julin but always used the name John. He was ennobled in 1849, and his time proved one of the most important stages in the history of the ironworks. Oil painting by J.E. Lindh.


Share certificate number 377, subscribed for by Albert von Julin.


Fine forgers began their training at an early age. Interior at the Fiskars cutlery mill early 20th century.


In the 1960s, plastic was a promising material of tomorrow. The shell of the Fiskars liquidizer was plastic (in production 1965–70) and the tableware was made in the 1962–73 period. The production of the orange-handled scissors started in 1967.


The Fiskars Campus, founded in 2010, is located in Arabianranta district, Helsinki, Finland.