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Our History and Milestones

Passion for surface solutions: from our beginnings in 1946 until today

1946 - 2021: From an idea to a global technology leader.

For 75 years, Oerlikon Balzers has stood for pioneering developments and global technology leadership in thin-film coatings. We live our passion for surface solutions with a unique combination of sustainability, innovative drive, entrepreneurial spirit and tradition. This benefits our customers – and our environment – yesterday, today and tomorrow.

Explore 75 years of Oerlikon Balzers

Balzers' first PVD hard coating for tools, BALINIT® A, was officially "born" on September 1st 1978. Since then, Oerlikon Balzers has been an unprecedented success story, ranging from pioneering the world of coatings to being a market leader.


Timeline filter

Launch of BALINIT FORMERA / FORMERA PLUS – the coating solution for AHSS forming applications

Opening of the 5th Customer Centre in South Korea

Oerlikon Balzers opens its 5th Customer Centre in South Korea, in Gwangju. “Korea is a genuine Oerlikon Balzers success story. This new centre will enable us to provide an even better, short-term delivery service for our customers in the forming tool / home appliance industry and for our automotive industry customers in the prosperous Gwangju area,” says Marc Desrayaud, Head of Business Unit Tooling Solutions at Oerlikon Surface Solutions.

Expansion of the Automotive Solutions facility in Bengaluru, India

The new Automotive Solutions building triples the size of the existing Oerlikon Balzers service centre in the Southern Indian mega city. With this significant investment in the future and in the Indian market, Oerlikon Balzers can now provide its customers from various industries with better and faster service, as well as with an extended portfolio - focused on the automotive market, but also taking in the aerospace, oil & gas, medical, textile and machining market for Precision Components.

70 years of innovation

In 1946, the “Gerätebau-Anstalt” in Balzers was founded. Prof. Max Auwärter, Franz Josef II von und zu Liechtenstein and the entrepreneur Emil G. Bührle, had the revolutionary idea of developing manufacturing processes in the area of thin coatings and constructing the equipment required for the industrial implementation themselves. Thus, for the first time, the process and the equipment became a single unit and were also offered and sold together – a business model that has enjoyed exceptional success for over 70 years.

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