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GUHDO History

GUHDO History

The original factory premises of GUHDO post WW2 and before they relocated to a new building in Wermelskirchen, about 30 miles East of Remscheid.
The old GUHDO production facility in Remscheid before its move to Wermelskirchen in the 1960s.

Remscheid, Germany, has a world wide reputation for being the center of precision tool manufacturing. GUHDO history began, when, in this town in 1908 brothers Gustav and Hugo Doerken founded a company to manufacture precision tools for the woodworking industry, specifically circular saw blades and machine knives (corrugated, planer knives and paper cutting knives). They named their company GUHDO, an acronym from the combination of the founder’s first and last name initials, and quickly developed an offering of popular woodworking tools. Below is undoubtedly the oldest GUHDO Sales Flyer dating back to 1925!

After World War II, due to the untimely deaths of both founders, the leadership of GUHDO became the responsibility of young Herbert Doerken, the son of founder, Hugo Doerken. Despite all the setbacks that occurred as a result of two world wars, under Herbert’s leadership GUHDO was able to grow and prosper. Herbert’s management philosophy was to provide quality tooling at a reasonable price, and to deliver what the customers wanted, when they wanted it! In the tooling business, Herbert may well have been the inventor of “Just in time!”. He was known to personally head down to the shipping department after hours, and pack up a last-minute order for same day pickup if called for. His dedicated leadership laid the foundation for the company to grow and prosper.

Herbert’s management style was one of great flexibility, which allowed progress and expansion to occur almost naturally. During Herbert’s tenure, GUHDO France and GUHDO USA (founded 1986) were established and GUHDO became a leading German exporter of industrial woodworking tools and machine knives to all continents of the world. Herbert passed away in 1994, leaving the company to his widow, Ruth Doerken. In 2005 the GUHDO group underwent a restructuring which split the GUHDO family into separate, independent entities. GUHDO USA became independent and later rebranded as GDP Industrial Tooling. GUHDO France was acquired by another tooling company and GUHDO Germany was acquired by Dimar Cutting Tools, from Israel. Despite separate ownership, the GUHDO entities continue to work together to serve the overall good of their worldwide customer base.

Today, GUHDO USA (dba GDP Industrial Tooling) has a solid position in the North American market and enjoys a loyal customer base, not only in the wood industry, but also other niche markets that require specialty cutting tools, such as the printed circuit board industry, teflon skiving, commutator manufacturing and others. The U.S. company continues to honor the GUHDO history of tooling excellence and timely delivery as exemplified by its founding member, Herbert Doerken.