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The milestones of our corporate development

Pioneering spirit for more than 90 years

Foundation of the Hilger u. Kern GmbH

The engineer Walter J. Hilger founded a trading company near Heidelberg in 1927. He sells spark plugs, V-belts and paint spray guns from US American manufacturers. 1928 Wilhelm Kern joins the company as an employee. After the death of the founder he takes over the company in 1936. He gives up the car spare parts trade and concentrates his sales activities on industrial companies. In the period from 1940 to 1960 Hilger u. Kern GmbH develops into a leading dealer for V-belts and paint spraying technology. 

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Moving into dispensing technology: The founding of DOPAG

In the meantime Reiner Kern, the son of the company founder, has taken over the management. The company has been active in metering and mixing technology since the early 1970s. Together with three business partners, Reiner Kern founded the DOPAG AG in Cham (Switzerland) in 1976 to further expand these activities. DOPAG begins with the production and sales of valves and piston pumps for the automotive industry. Numerous product launches and the application for several patents follow. 

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Patented two part dispensing technology

After the successful entry into 1-component metering and mixing technology, DOPAG begins a few years later to offer customers multi-component metering and mixing systems. In 1984 a patent application is filed for the VOLU-MIX metering principle. It is based on the beginnings of two part painting technology. Due to the increasing quality requirements, the automotive industry increasingly demanded dispensing systems which were characterised by very high accuracy. Over time, the system was modified and systems for other applications were constructed.

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Starting internationalisation

Over the past decades, metering and mixing technology has developed into a leading business field and has also gained increasing importance internationally. In order to strategically push ahead with internationalisation, owner Reiner Kern founded DOPAG France together with his business partner Pierre Montala in 1990. The expansion of the international sales network begins.

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New technology: gear pumps

Up to now, only piston pumps have been installed in the metering and mixing systems. In 1991 DOPAG added another technology to its portfolio. The company now offers 1-component and 2-component systems with gear pump metering technology. The systems are built by the company at its site in Mannheim. 

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Further internationalisation

At the beginning of the new millennium, DOPAG continues to expand its international sales activities. In 2002 a DOPAG subsidiary is founded in Great Britain. Italy follows in 2004 and in 2009 the first subsidiary outside Europe follows with the founding of DOPAG USA. DOPAG then concentrates on conquering the Asian market. 2010 DOPAG China is founded in Shanghai, a branch office in India is added in 2014.  

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Patent for highly dynamic dispensing system

DOPAG has developed the highly dynamic modis dispensing system for the extremely precise application of 1-component adhesives. This type of dosing is only possible if it is carried out directly at the point of application. DOPAG is granted a patent for this technology. The modis dispensing system is light and compact. It is perfectly suited to the robot hand and is therefore mainly used in the automotive industry. 

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90th anniversary

In 2017 the HILGER & KERN GROUP celebrates its 90th anniversary. Based in Mannheim, the family-run company has developed into an internationally active development and service partner for industrial companies in various market segments. The DOPAG brand is successful worldwide. The company consolidates its successful sales activities in Eastern Europe, Mexico and South Korea through its own branches. In 2017, DOPAG Eastern Europe takes over customer support in Prague. A team in Seoul takes up work for DOPAG Korea. One year later, in 2018, the subsidiary in Mexico is founded. 

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New business field: automation

DOPAG is strategically expanding its activities in metering and mixing technology with a new business segment. In future, DOPAG customers will receive automated, turnkey complete solutions. These include not only metering and mixing technology, but also upstream and downstream process steps and component handling. Depending on the area of application, DOPAG offers automated metering and mixing technology in a production cell, as an individually designed special system or as a module for integration into the production line. 

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Gasketing and dynamic mixing technology

With the dynamicLine, DOPAG sets a benchmark for dynamic mixing technology. The dynamicLine offers solutions for all applications around dynamic mixing, from classic gasketing to bonding and potting applications. In developing the new technology, the company has benefited from the know-how it has acquired over the past 40 years. In addition, DOPAG supports customers with sampling and prototype production as well as with contract manufacturing of small and large series.

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