April 28, 2021 | Bill Esler
Herford, Germany – Anton Hettich, 91, a scion of one of the furniture and cabinetry industries’ great hardware manufacturers, passed away on April 24 following a short serious illness.
Anton Hettich had been a co-partner in the family business in Schramberg, Germany since 1949. After the early death of his father in 1956, he became a member of the management at the age of 27. In January 1959, following the legal separation from the parent company, he became Chairman of the Management Board of Paul Hettich GmbH & Co. KG in Herford.
In 1991, he moved to the Advisory Board, maintaining his tenure there as Chairman until 2016.
Through his commitment and wealth of ideas, Anton Hettich developed the company into an internationally successful enterprise. Many technical developments were created under his leadership. In 1962, he developed and patented a block connecting fitting eliminating the need to dowel furniture parts. Soon after Hettich developed the four-pivot hinge (below) that became an industry model for future door hinges and supplanted the then-dominant piano-style hinge used in furniture.
“The death of Anton Hettich leaves a big gap,” says a company spokesperson. “His family, all the shareholders, the advisory board, the management and the entire Hettich team mourn the loss of a great personality and will continue to develop the Hettich Group in his spirit.”
Activities Outside the Company
Anton Hettich made his professional experience available to the Germany’s business community and economy in many honorary offices: For 10 years he chaired the East Westphalia-Lippe Entrepreneurs Group. He was also Vice President of the East Westphalia Chamber of Industry and Commerce in Bielefeld for several years. As honorary chairman of the Industrievereinigung Möbelzubehör (IVM) in Düsseldorf, he remained closely associated with the hardware industry. In the 1970s, Anton Hettich was a CDU (German political party) councillor in Herford. As chairman, he successfully developed a local golf and country club.
Social Commitment Was Close to His Heart
Anton Hettich received several awards for his successful entrepreneurial activities. In 2006, he received the Hessian Order of Merit. In 2014, Anton Hettich was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit on Ribbon. He always kept the common good in mind and was also honoured many times for his social commitment.
One of his most important goals was to promote the education, training and upbringing of children and young people. Anton Hettich therefore established the Anton Hettich Foundation as early as 1992. Together with his son Andreas, he increased the foundation capital to €14 million in 2019 on the occasion of his 90th birthday.
Hettich was founded in 1888 and is today one of the world’s largest and most successful manufacturers of furniture fittings. Over 6,700 members of staff in almost 80 countries work together towards one objective: developing intelligent technology for furniture.
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