Kiel Group

History of the Kiel Group

For 70 years the Kiel Group has been producing passenger seats for buses and trains, a history which started 1945 with the foundation of the German company Franz Kiel GmbH. We are proud of our tradition and we feel it obligates us to provide the highest quality products.

History of the Kiel Group


The company Franz Kiel GmbH is founded in Germany


Franz Kiel and co-owner Friedrich Krüger establish the new company headquarters in Nördlingen, Germany


The first fixed seat frames are manufactured


Production of adjustable passenger seats starts (“Greyhound Seats”)


Development of the first self-supporting seat, the “Kiel 1”


The company headquarters in Nördlingen, Germany, is growing. Construction of a new administrative building and expansion of the production facility.


The subsidiary company Kiel Oto Koltuk is created in Bursa, Turkey.


The subsidiary company Kiel Polska Sp. z o. o. is created in Nowy Tomysl, Poland.


The subsidiary company Franz Kiel B. V. is created in the Netherlands.


The subsidiary company Kiel France s.a. r. l. is created in France. Launch of sales and distribution of Kiel products in Scandinavia, Greece, and Israel.


Kiel takes over the production of train seats for a Norwegian company.


A manufacturing plant is established in Turkey. Extension of sales activity to Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, and Macedonia.     License agreement for the production of bus seats in India


Introduction of the computer system SAP


Kiel Seating Ltd. is founded in Northampton, Great Britain


The first Kiel “Match” train seat for regional transport is delivered.


Kiel N.A. LLC is founded in Elkhard, Indiana (USA).


FKT Koltuk A.s, becomes Kiel’s new cooperation partner in Turkey.


Formation of the KFK OOO joint venture in Russia.


Construction of a new production facility in Nördlingen, Germany, exclusively for train  seats.

Distribution agreement for commercial driver seats with Recaro Automotive Seating.

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