Company history

The CLAAS success story.

Many companies have a history – and some of them have also made history. But only a select few have had such a sustained influence on the history of international agriculture as CLAAS.

Company history

The CLAAS success story.

Many companies have a history – and some of them have also made history. But only a select few have had such a sustained influence on the history of international agriculture as CLAAS.

1913 – 1929: It all began with a knotter.

1913

August Claas founded a separate company in Clarholz-Heerde for the manufacture and repair of straw binders. Writing to the responsible public office in Herzebrock on 7 Juni 1913, he begged to inform them that, "I have been operating my own business since 8 April 1913. I am employing two fitters, one assistant and am manufacturing straw binders."

1914

Franz junior and Bernhard Claas joined the company. In a letter of January 1914, they informed the office that "the company shall now be continued under the name Gebr. Claas". The fourth brother, Theo, joined the family business as a partner in 1935.

The Claas brothers around 1950, from left to right: Theo, Franz, August and Bernhard

The old quarryworks in Harsewinkel

1919

On 7 July 1919, the Claas brothers purchased an old, disused quarryworks on Münsterstrasse in Harsewinkel. It was then converted into a factory building for argricultural machinery. Today, the old chimney still towers over the roofs of the main factory in Harsewinkel.

The patented knotter bill hook with floating knotter jaw

1921

CLAAS constructed its first in-house knotting device for efficient straw binding. The young company was issued with several patents for the knotting device, including, in 1923, the patent for a knotter with floating knotter jaw, which was later adopted as the company logo.

1924

At the 30th German Agricultural Society (DLG ) fair in Hamburg, the patented CLAAS knotter was awarded the Large Silver DLG medal.

CLAAS milestones