TroGroup ‒ Our History

1912 founded in Vienna

Franz Just founds a small business in the 18th District of Vienna. The production of rubber stamps began with a journeyman, an apprentice and his wife. The company in Vienna flourishes and grows, and the company has to relocate several times within Vienna due to lack of space.

1944 OHG Franz Just & Sons

Sons Herbert and Walter join their father’s business. In autumn 1944, the sole proprietorship Franz Just is converted into the open trading company Franz Just & Sons. Company founder Franz Just dies in autumn 1945 and his two sons take over management of the company.

1947 European exports

The economically difficult times ‒ the war years, the post-war period, occupation zones, currency reform, compensation transactions ‒ are navigated with great skill, and the company continues to grow. The first exports of stamp goods cross the border to Germany and Switzerland.

1951 Relocation from Vienna to Wels

Walter Just decides to move from Vienna to the American zone of occupation in Upper Austria. His brother Herbert remains active in Vienna. Walter Just chooses the city of Wels as the new location ‒ ideally located in terms of transport with nearby road and rail connections in the “heart of Europe”. In 1951 stamp production starts in the newly built factory, and the export business grows rapidly.

1960 Trodat name

The first plastic date stamps under the ‘Trodat’ name are produced in 1947/1948: The name is made up of two syllables ‘Tro’ (abbreviation of Trolitul, a plastic used at that time) and ‘dat’ (abbreviation of date). In 1960 the Trodat product brand is registered internationally, and years later Trodat is used as the company name.

1960s Advancement

Sales and production figures are developing splendidly; the operating area of the production and administration buildings is constantly being expanded. New warehouses and assembly halls, paint shops and joinery workshops are built, which leads to a doubling of the original operating area in the 1960s: thanks to the strong advancement of international exports.

1968 Company division

In 1968 the locations in Vienna and Wels are divided between the two Just brothers. Herbert Just remains in Vienna with the Stempel-Just company – and Walter Just heads up the Trodat factories in Wels. It isn’t until 1992 that the companies finally separate in terms of assets.

1991 Tromir – Trodat stamp in space

On 2nd October 1991, the first Austrian Franz Viehböck in space is taking part in a manned, Soviet-Austrian cooperation project. During his one-week stay on the MIR space station, the Austrian cosmonaut stamps letters and postcards in space ‒ generating media attention ‒ with an original Trodat Printy: quickly renamed TROMIR (‘TRO’ stands for ‘Trodat’, ‘MIR’ for the name of the space station), the first stamp in space.

1991 Revolutionary idea as the foundation of Trotec Laser

Klaus Müller was inspired by a trip to the USA to use CO₂-Lasers to produce text plates precisely and to the highest quality standards. This revolutionary idea was the foundation for the development history of Trotec lasers and the digitalization of the stamping industry. Klaus Müller was the first CEO of Trotec and CEO of Trodat 1983-2002.

1997 Trotec Laser GmbH founded

Trotec originally emerged from a Trodat research branch for the optimised production of stamp text plates. Today Trotec is a global leader in the field of laser technology and sets new standards. Trotec develops, produces and markets high-tech laser devices for marking, cutting and engraving, and sells a wide variety of engraving materials.

1998 Introduction of uTypia software solutions

Trodat starts creating software solutions for personalised stamp imprints as early as 1998. Today’s uTypia software solutions develop online solutions for the sale of personalised products, which are easy to design online. Users can design and order customisable products, such as stamps, print products, signs, etc. online.

2000 lebensspuren.museum opened

In 1997 Walter Just acquires a villa in Wels city centre in order to present his collection of stamps and seals to the public: official opening of the Museum of Stamps and Seals in 2000. Most of the exhibits are dedicated to the topic of marking as well as to the history of its development. The company museum was until the end of the year 2020 located in the basement of the museum building ‒ with exhibitions focused on Trodat stamps and Trotec lasers.

2001 TMX China founded

With the formation of the Trodat Marking Devices (Xiamen) subsidiary in China, Trodat marks an important milestone in the company’s recent history to successfully gain a foothold in the huge Asian stamp market ‒ today, one of the most important production and sales locations within the Trodat Trotec Group.

2004 Trodat footbridge opened

The then Trodat Holding GmbH (now TroGroup) takes over the “new” Wels landmark as the main named sponsor. The popular pedestrian and cyclist footbridge over the river Traun connects the neighbouring towns of Wels and Thalheim and is known as the Trodat footbridge among residents.

2012 100th anniversary

Trodat celebrates its 100th anniversary on 1st October 2012 under the motto “Trodat Next 100 Years”. Only a few weeks later, Walter Just dies ‒ the figure who shaped the entire industry for decades.

2013 New Trotec Laser GmbH headquarters

The groundbreaking ceremony for the new Trotec company building takes place during the defining anniversary year (100th company anniversary). The following year, the new headquarters of Trotec Laser GmbH in Marchtrenk are officially opened ‒ only a few kilometres from Wels. Designed as a green building, it is energy self-sufficient in terms of heating, cooling and ventilation.

2018 New ownership structure

As a private company, Trodat Trotec Holding Gmbh is now 74.9 % owned by the Müller-Just Family Foundations, and 25.1 % owned by the owners of the Lower Austrian ImWind Group.

2021 TroGroup GmbH

Renaming of Trodat Trotec Holding GmbH to TroGroup GmbH

Businessman Walter Just

(1921-2012)

 

 

...in order to be able to work efficiently, only products that can be sold in a market of 100 million people are taken up as series production...

Walter Just made this statement about the principle of product development in 1945.

The story begins in 1912. Franz Just and his wife cooked stamp inks on a kitchen stove and filled glass bottles with them until finally, in 1912, they had enough savings to open a small stamp manufacturing business in Vienna. 

In 1960, his son Walter Just registers the Trodat product brand. Trodat is made up of the syllables ‘Tro’ and ‘dat’. ‘Tro’ stands for Trolitul ‒ a plastic that was previously used to produce stamps ‒ and ‘dat’ is an abbreviation of date stamp. The foundation for a global group was laid, the Trodat brand became synonymous with high-quality stamps ‒ and our Printy is the world’s best-selling stamp to date. 

The history of Trotec, which has developed into the global market leader in laser plotters, began in the 1990s.