Family Affair: Rise of the Mittelstand

Uhlmann Pac-Systeme

Uhlmann Pac-Systeme GmbH & Co. KG

Name: Uhlmann
Founded: 1948
Location: Laupheim, Germany
Employees: c. 1,600

Specializing in pharmaceutical packaging for more than 60 years, southern Germany based Uhlmann employs roughly 1,600 people worldwide and has a presence everywhere from Brazil to Singapore.

Founded in 1948 by Josef Uhlmann, the company started out by manufacturing "precision molds for the production of suppositories." Eight years later, Uhlmann designed the HS30, described by the company as the "world's first universal strip packaging machine."

More than 8,000 Uhlmann packaging machines have since been exported around the world. The company's Blister Express Center 500 was launched in 2012 and can produce 500 foil "blisters" for pills and other drugs per minute.

Friedrich Uhlmann, Josef's son, joined the company in 1963. In 2007, Tobias Uhlmann - the third generation of the Uhlmann family to be involved with the company - became chairman of the supervisory board of the Uhlmann Group, which reported a turnover of 260 million euros for 2013/14.