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  • 1904 - Friedrich Wilhelm Witte founds the Leipziger Kugellager GmbH in Naumburger Straße 23 in the district Plagwitz in the city of Leipzig and starts manufacturing of industrial ball bearings. At the beginning, the portfolio includes radial and axial deep groove ball bearings up to a diameter of 150mm. 10 years later, the product portfolio was expanded to include needle rollers and complete assembled needle roller bearings, which were available in full complement design.

  • 1930 – The separating ball bearing is developed. The new type of precision ball bearing for machine tools can absorb radial and axial forces at the same time. The self-adjusting bearing preload, the long lifetime and the low space requirement made it not only a patent, but later also a DIN standard, as can still be read today under DIN 628 T5.

  • 1932 - UKF Universal-Kugellager-Fabrik GmbH is founded in Berlin-Charlottenburg by businessman Max Staub and the engineer Paul Brühl and offers the new designed separating ball bearing as a universal bearing to replace 7 different types of angular contact ball bearings.

  • 1934 - The Leipzig plant expands significantly, so that within two years of construction a second plant is built on an area of 35,000 m² at the Böhlitz-Ehrenberg site, which is now a district of Leipzig, too. Under the brand name DKF (Deutsche Kugellagerfabrik) 1,500 employees produce needle and deep groove ball bearings as well as radial and axial bearings, four point contact ball bearings with split outer ring, flange bearings and, in the course of World War II, also special bearings for aircraft and tank engines.


  • 1939 - The increasing development and use of vehicles of all kinds, as well as new machines, led to the establishment of another plant within the DKF Group - the Norddeutsche Kugellagerfabrik Brandt & Co. KG (NKF) in Berlin, Lichtenberg.


  • 1945 (end of the Second World War) - All DKF plants are confiscated by the Soviet Union for reparation payment purposes. Within in the first 2 years all produced bearings were delivered exclusively to the Soviet Union.


  • 1947 - urgently needed bearings were again made available for the German market.


  • 1956 - In addition to the plant in Berlin, another 7 state-owned companies (VEB) in the entire territory of the former GDR (German Democratic Republic) are united under the roof of the “Kombinat Wälzlager und Normteile”. These included, for example, the rolling bearing factory in Leipzig (today known as KRW Kugel- und Rollenlagerwerk Leipzig), the factory in Fraureuth (today known as SLF Spindel- und Lagerungstechnik Fraureuth GmbH) and the bearing cage factory in Mittweida (today known as MPT Group GmbH).


  • 1960s - a completely automatic assembly line is used in Berlin for the first time.


  • 1980s – New NC machines are installed in Berlin.


  • 1989 – As part of a privatization process, the Steyr bearing factory is sold to SKF in 1988. One year later, former employees found the STC-Steyr cooperation in Steyr, Austria, with the focus on the sale of medium and large roller bearings for heavy machinery.

  • 1990 - With the end of the GDR (German Democratic Republic) comes the end of the state-owned enterprises. According to the agreement between the “Treuhandanstalt” and FAG Kugelfischer Georg Schäfer KGaA (merged into the Schaeffler Group in 2011), the rolling bearing group from Schweinfurt buys all 8 bearing plants of the whole Kombinat with a total number of 7,500 employees for 27 million DM (Deutsche Mark).


  • 1992 - FAG Kugelfischer Georg Schäfer KGaA is forced to get rid of all recently acquired bearing plants.


  • 1993 - After DKFL's insolvency proceedings, some of the individual bearing plants are continued until today.

  • 2007 – STC-Steyr sets-up a national subsidiary in Berlin, Germany, in order to meet the increasing demand and the accompanying need for support from the Federal Republic of Germany.

  • 2018 - All existing processes of the two STC-Steyr branches are combined and optimized in Berlin, Germany.

Today - DKF Deutsche Kugellagerfabriken GmbH (DKF Group) is continuing the over 80-years old tradition of manufacturing ball bearings at its Berlin location. Today the group members STC-Steyr and UKF develop and produce all types and sizes of bearings.

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