Millions of German and French people will have a piece of his industrial genius in their homes. Indeed, he has been a major influence on the electrical engineering sector in these two countries. And, most importantly, the co-founder of Hager Group, Dr. Oswald Hager, is a truly consummate entrepreneur who continues to help steer the company. He celebrates his 90th birthday on 16th November.
Dr. Oswald Hager was born in Ensheim, Saarland, in 1926. He served in the military, was held prisoner, studied for his degree and completed his doctorate before founding Hager with his father and his brother Hermann in 1955. The three-man business experienced its breakthrough with the introduction of a distribution board system, developed by the two brothers Oswald and Hermann, which replaced the wide range of systems available at the time. Over the decades, the classic distribution box evolved into the Hager Control Centre, and the system now provides millions of homes with a secure energy supply.
The secret to Hager's success? "We have always listened to the market and our customers," explains the man of the hour, who continues to perform functions for Hager Group. "We have systematically developed our products and services with them in mind." It was in this way that the family-run company grew to become a global player based in Blieskastel, Saarland, Germany, with 28 production sites all over the world and a turnover of 1.9 billion euros. One of the leading innovators in the industry, Hager Group has been under the leadership of Dr. Oswald Hager's son, Daniel Hager, since 2008.
As well as being active on the business scene, Dr. Oswald Hager also had a keen involvement in matters relating to economic and social policy in his roles in organisations such as the German Electrical and Electronic Manufacturers’ Association (ZVEI), on the committee of the Federation of German Industries (BDI) and as vice president of the Saarland Chamber of Industry and Commerce (IHK). He campaigned for industrial matters close to his heart in memoirs such as the ‘Confessions of two Entrepreneurs’, which he wrote with his brother in 1977, as well as in personal letters to politicians.
As a sales expert, Dr. Oswald Hager has travelled all over the world. He is known for his cosmopolitan outlook and his love of festivities. He will be celebrating his birthday with family members, and five days later a party will be held in the company. "We came from the Saar region, and we were known for bringing champagne and cognac along with us," the consummate entrepreneur once said, looking back on the early days of his company. "That was important to us then, and we're still doing it today."
"Birthday parties are good for your health – the older you get, the more you have!"
In this spirit, an official party was held on 21st November at Hager Group in Blieskastel to celebrate 90th birthday of Dr. Oswald Hager. Around 80 guests, among them many Hager Group employees, joined in to wish the entrepreneur a happy birthday.
Several personalities from the political world and professional associations were present, such as Anke Rehlinger, Minister for the Economy of the German federal state of Saarland; Holger Heckle, CEO of the German Association of Electrical Wholesalers (VEG); and Lothar Hellmann, President of the Central Association of German Electrical and IT Trades (ZVEH).
Dr. Hager appeared touched and surprised by all the speeches and birthday wishes.
"I occasionally found myself thinking, are they really talking about me? I'm nothing special, I see myself as someone who has just done his job."
About Hager Group
Hager Group is a leading provider of solutions and services for electrical installations in residential, commercial and industrial buildings. Its range of solutions and services extends from energy distribution to cable management and from security systems to building automation.
As an independent family-owned and family-run company based in Blieskastel, Germany, Hager Group is one of the industry’s innovation leaders. 11,650 employees generate sales of around 1.9 billion Euro. Components and solutions are produced at 28 locations around the globe and customers in 129 countries all over the world trust in them.
1 – Dr. Oswald Hager celebrated his 90th birthday on November 16th.
From left to right: Michaela Krick, Peter Hager jr., Ulrike Hager, Daniel Hager, Dr. Oswald Hager, Holger Heckle - CEO of the German Association of Electrical Wholesalers (VEG), Lothar Hellmann - President of the Central Association of German Electrical and IT Trades (ZVEH), Alfred Bricka, Anke Rehlinger - Minister for the Economy of Saarland, Oswald Bubel.
2 – Daniel Hager, CEO of Hager Group with his father Oswald.
3 – Dr. Oswald Hager and his wife, Ulrike Hager.
© Hager Group