History of the HORNBACH Group


History of the HORNBACH Group


Michael Hornbach, a master slater, establishes a workshop in Landau/Pfalz.


His son, Wilhelm Hornbach, expands his father’s business by adding a construction materials trading business.

Post 1945

Alongside the construction materials trade, the production of domestic and municipal sewage plants becomes an important springboard for further growth in the next generation with Albert and Wilhelm Hornbach junior. For this, HORNBACH moves to Bornheim bei Landau.


Otmar Hornbach, great-grandson of the company founder, takes a pioneering step – opening the first combined DIY store and garden center in Bornheim. This combination is the first of its kind in Europe.


The first large-scale “DIY supermarket”, with sales areas of more than 8,000 m², opens in Karlsruhe. HORNBACH becomes the leading specialist in DIY superstores.


The company holds its first initial public offering (IPO). Its workforce grows to around 1,000 employees.


After the fall of the Berlin Wall, HORNBACH is the first company in the DIY sector to build megastores in the former East in the same way as the West. Dresden is the first such store. At the time, it is Germany’s largest DIY store and already has a drive-in collection point for construction materials.


HORNBACH holds a further IPO: HORNBACH AG is divided into HORNBACH HOLDING AG and HORNBACH-Baumarkt-AG.


Back to the origins and as a further pillar of the group, Hornbach Baustoff Union GmbH is established as a holding company in order to expand in the regional building materials wholesale business. Its first operating subsidiary company is Union Bauzentrum Hornbach GmbH, which emerged in 2000 from HORNBACH Baustoff und Fliesen GmbH in Bornheim. It is later followed by the subsidiary companies Ruhland-Kallenborn & Co. GmbH, Etablissement Camille Holtz & Cie SA and Robert Röhlinger GmbH as well as numerous branches of Union Bauzentrum Hornbach GmbH.


Starting in Austria, HORNBACH launches its international expansion.


The succession to the fifth generation is complete. Albrecht Hornbach becomes CEO of HORNBACH HOLDING AG, while his brother Steffen Hornbach becomes CEO of HORNBACH Baumarkt AG.

Strategic alliance with the British retail group Kingfisher, Europe’s largest DIY store operator.


HORNBACH celebrates its 125th anniversary and opens its first DIY store and garden center in Switzerland in Littau near Lucerne.

Establishment of the HORNBACH Foundation “People in Need”.


Swedish premiere: the first HORNBACH DIY store in Scandinavia opens its doors in Gothenburg in October. This also marks the birth of a new store type with an integrated drive-in construction materials facility. HORNBACH introduces the drive-in concept to the DIY sector – once again acting as a pioneer.


Another country market is on the agenda: HORNBACH expands to Slovakia, opening its first store in Bratislava.


Opening of a further logistics center in Vilshofen (Lower Bavaria). Alongside Lehrte near Hanover and Essingen in the Palatinate region, this is the third central distribution center to deliver, rearrange, and forward pooled merchandise to the stores.


The first store in Romania opens in Bucharest in June.


HORNBACH positions itself on social media with its first Facebook profile.


HORNBACH launches its online retail under the motto “Hornbach is coming home”. The German online shop goes live at www.hornbach.de (German).


Dutch, Swiss, and Romanian businesses mark their 15th, 10th, and 5th anniversaries.

The HORNBACH Foundation can also look back on ten years.


Opening in March of the “Memorial for Victims of National Socialism” on the site of the former Turenne Barracks in Neustadt – now “Quartier Hornbach” and in company ownership. Link: Gedenkstätte für NS-Opfer (German)


End of strategic alliance with the Kingfisher Group.

Opening of former Praktiker/Max-Bahr stores in new HORNBACH look: Trier, Schwabach, Ulm, Lüneburg, Kamen, and Saarbrücken.


150th HORNBACH DIY store and garden center opens its doors in Geleen, Netherlands.

HORNBACH HOLDING AG is converted into a German partnerships limited by shares: HORNBACH Holding AG & Co. KGaA.


With the launch of its online shop in Romania, HORNBACH now offers multichannel e-commerce retail in all of the countries in which it operates.

HORNBACH celebrates “50 Years of Combined DIY Stores and Garden Centers”.


Erich Harsch joins HORNBACH from the drugstore chain dm and succeeds Steffen Hornbach as CEO of HORNBACH Baumarkt AG.


HORNBACH Baumarkt AG opens two specialist stores for hard floors (“BODENHAUS”) in Berlin and Cologne.


HORNBACH Holding takes HORNBACH Baumarkt AG private. The listing on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange ends on February 28, 2022.

Group Communications contacts

Antje Kelbert
Antje Kelbert
Head of Investor Relations
Anne Spies
Anne Spies
Senior Investor Relations Manager
Maximilian Franz
Manager Investor Relations
Fabienne Villwock
Fabienne Villwock
Assistant Investor Relations

Further Information


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