The Schweighofer family
from a small sawmill to European market leader
Location: Waldviertel, the forest district in northern Austria. Actually, the name suggests that a business set up here ought to be based on wood. It is in fact a family's story of success who reached the top of the European wood milling industry over generations.
It started in a small town named Brand in Austria's Waldviertel more than 400 years ago, when eleven mills were situated at the local riverside. One of them was the "Furtmühle", the core of the later parent plant of the Schweighofer wood processing mills. In 1642 the name Schweighofer was mentioned as owner of the "Furtmühle" and the sawmill for the first time.
In 1956 Franz and Maria Schweighofer took over the management of the sawmill in Brand with only three employees and an annual sawing output of 1,000 cubic meters. Considerable personal commitment resulted in increasing productivity and raising capacities. The main factor of success was the use of innovative technology, which Gerald Schweighofer, who joined his parents' business in 1975, always put particular emphasis on. Thus, in 1977 the first profiling line in the world was started in Brand. Opening Europe's largest and best equipped sawmill located in Ybbs with own docks at the river Danube was another milestone for the Schweighofer company's enormous upswing. In 1991 followed the take-over of the Sollenau sawmill south of Vienna. At this time, the annual sawing output already exceeded one million cubic meters.