From Styria to the World
|On the outskirts of Pohorje, the first ironworks (fuzine) are established in the 18th century. Until the 19th century, four ironworks are active in this area, the one in Zrece among them. They are active as large foundries that manually manufacture tools for farming and other crafts.|
|Styria Iron Works Company Ltd. is established. The foundry with the short name Stajerska Zrece employs 250 workers before World War II. They manufacture forged hand tools for farming, forestry, and different crafts.|
|after being destroyed by fire and then partially rebuilt, the plant is renamed Factory of Forged Tools Zrece and comes under public ownership. Thorough reconstruction of the factory, predominantly dedicated to hand tool manufacture, is connected with the introduction of new technologies of American-style drop forging.|
New capacities (a tool shop and plant for mechanically processed hand tools) give impetus to the development of two production segments: hand implements and tools, and drop-forged parts.
The buyers of hand tools from Zrece are mainly machine shops and other workshops, craftsmen, and households, as well as industry.
Drop-forged parts intended for industrial needs are especially used in the production of cars, tractors, motorcycles, internal combustion engines, etc.
In the 1970s,
|the factory with a new vision also gets a new name: Unior, Factory of Forged Tools Zrece. The new name is a newly coined word formation of universal tools for which the factory is already well known. New visions are connected with already established co-operative ventures with European, especially West German, companies.|
In the middle of 1970's, Unior begins building the Rogla mountain resort and Olympic centre in Pohorje, and a few years later also the health resort Terme Zrece in Zrece itself. Later, they increase the number of ski-lifts, hotels and other residences, and sport infrastructure, making Rogla one of the largest sports and recreational tourist centres in Slovenia, while Terme Zrece with its new capacity becomes one of the most popular destinations in Slovenia, which has highly developed spa tourism.
During the 1980s,
|Unior starts and later fully strengthens its position as an important European automotive industry partner, developing into one of the major European manufacturers of light forgings and one of the largest European manufacturers of connecting rods for gasoline engines, which puts it among the major suppliers for companies like VW, BMW, and others.|
The first steps in this field are made with a Renault Group contract, which later develops into today's joint-venture plant for the manufacture of forgings, erected at Zrece, with the parallel development of velocity joints and machine building, at first intended particularly for Unior's own needs.
In the 1990s,
|Unior increases its export of hand tools by establishing a world-wide distribution network, where Unior's own distribution companies for marketing and sales in Austria, Germany, Great Britain, France, Italy, Spain, Greece, Macedonia, and Singapore become especially important.|
In 1997,Unior, the successful Slovenian company with consolidated international partnerships, transforms into the Unior Joint-Stock Company. From the very beginnings of the new corporation, its production and business are managed in compliance with the requirements of the ISO 9001 Quality Standard.
In the New MillenniumUnior d.d. successfully continues its investment policy in all areas of the company. The acquisition of a 60% share in the ironworks Store Steel d.o.o. represents for the Forged Parts and Hand Tools programs an increase in the reliability of product supply, due to a drop in the risk of steel supply.
The establishment of the company Unior Werkzeugsmachinen GmbH in Germany improves access to the products and services of the Machine Tools program by more demanding customers and thus creates opportunities for the development of this program. By the acquisition and take-over of the operations of the companies MPP Tehnoloska oprema and MPP Inzeniring, which were once an integral part of the concern TAM Maribor, the company Unior upgrades its Machine Tools program operations with the development and production of sheet-metal tools for the automotive industry.
With the acquisition of the company RTC Krvavec, the company consolidates the position of the Tourism program in Slovenia and Europe. The company is also taking an active role in the design of tourist opportunities in co-operation with the company MRC d.o.o. in preparation for reviving the Rimske Toplice health resort.
In 2004, the company Unior d.d. establishes the company Unior Bionic d.o.o for the production and marketing of medical equipment. The well-developed network for hand tools sales is expanded and strengthened by the establishment of new companies in Australia, Russia, and the United States.
IMPORTANT EVENTS IN THE PERIOD THE OWNERSHIP RESTRUCTURING
Year 1996- On 16 December UNIOR received the second consent issued by the Agency of Republic of Slovenia for Privatisation and Restructuring and became a joint stock company in accordance with the Companies`Ownership Transformation Act.
Year 1997- On 15 April the Company UNIOR Kovaška industrija Zreče was entered into the Court Register as a joint stock company. - In the autumn, a reconstruct of roof and construction of jutting roof were completed in the Kovačnica (forge plant). - On 12 December, the first assembly of Company UNIOR d.d. was held, and the Supervisory Board appointed a four-member Management Board: Janez Špes, the President of the Management Board, Gorazd Korošec, the Vice-President of the Management Board and Viljem Brvar and Robert Ribič as Members. - In December a renovation of the Planja Hotel and the ski-service shop on Rogla were completed.
Year 1998- On 1 July, the company UNIOR Hellas in Greece was established. - In November, a new four-seat chairlift Jurgovo was put into service. - In the field of environmental management, we decreased the noise pollution impacts on the environment from the Kovačnica (forge plant).
Year 1999- On 5 May, the company UNIOR Italia was established. - In July, UNIOR acquired a 20% share in the company INEXA Štore d.o.o. - In July, a construction of the Terme 2000 in Zreče was completed. - A system of quality control according to the requirements of ISO 9001; 1994 was introduced in the company UNIOR d.d. - A new treatmet plant for wastewaters from Galvana technology was constructed.
Year 2000- A new production hall was constructed and new equipment purchased for the Sinter plant. - On 10 November, UNIOR d.d. became a 65% owner of the company LUMAR-HIŠE d.o.o. Gomilsko which was renamed into BIVA-HIŠE d.o.o. in 2004. - A system of automotive industry quality control according to the requirements of QS 9000 was introduced in the Kovačnica plant.
Year 2001- On 7 April, a fire broke out in Terme Zreče. - On 12 April, a company MPP Inženiring d.o.o. Maribor was acquired. - on 25 April, we concluded a contact on the acquisition of the company MMP Tehlološka oprema d.o.o Maribor. - On 4 July, a contract on the acquisition of the company UNIOR Espana, Spain, was concluded. - On 17 October, a company UNIOR Deutschland was established in Germany. - After a devastating fire, a reconstruction of Terme Zreče was completed in December.
Year 2002- A system of quality control according to the requirements of ISO 9001; 2000 was introduced in the Company UNIOR d.d. - A construction of moutain hut on Jurgovo was completed in October. - On 4 December, a company UNIOR Werkzeugmaschinen was established in Germany. - An installation of the new forging line Lasco was completed in autumn. - On 12 December, a term of office terminated for the Management, The Supervisory Board thus appointed a new Management: Gorazd Korošec, the President of the Management Board, Robert Ribič, the Vice-President of the Management Board, and Marjan Korošec and Darko Hrastnik as Members. The Management was appointed for five-year term of office on the 13 December 2002.
Year 2003- On 20 January we sold a 48.9% share in the company Orbis-Werk GmbH to the firm Knipex-Werk in Germany. - A swimming pool complex and wellness Centre in the Planja Hotel on Rogla were put into service. - A Komage press system and Ficep shears for cutting were put into service. - A renovation of the end-products warehouse was concluded. - A new automated welding cell was purchased for the Lenart plant. - On 6 May, we sold 35.5% share in the company Rydcon d.o.o. to the firm Hansa-flex Armerding GmbH Bremen. - A system of automotive industry quality control according to the requirements of VDA 6.1 and QS 9000 were introduced in Forging Programme. - A system according to the requirements of HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) was introduced. - In July, we aquired a share owned by the Swedish partner in company Inexa Štore and renamed into Štore Steel d.o.o. - In November, we took over the management in Cankarjevi ribniki (Cankar`s Ponds) in Stranice. - In December the construction of a four-seat chair lift Planja was completed.
Year 2004- Mr Darko Hrastnik term as a member of the management board ends on 1 January, from which point on the board has three members. - Unior d.d. acquires RTC Krvavec d.d. on 9 June. - The refitting of the Bridnje and Jelka plants is completed. - A high-pressure hydraulic hammer is purchased for the Forgings division. - The reconstruction of the main production hall is completed. - A magnetic resonance machine is purchased. - The construction of the treatment plant for waste graphite from the forging machinery is completed. - A quality management system in line with ISO 9001; 2000 requirements is introduced for the Machine Tools division in Maribor. - An evironmental management system in line with ISO 14001; 1996 requirements is introduced for the whole company. - Unior d.d. joins MRC on 2 September with the aim of reviving Rimske Toplice. - A summer/winter sledge run is built at Rogla in October. - The moutain cabin on Pesek is placed under company`s management on 1 November. - The construction of the treatment plant at Rogla and Jurgovo is completed in December. - Unior Bionic d.o.o. is established on 7 December to produce and market medical devices. - Unidal d.o.o. is established in Vinkovci in Croatia on 31 December, with Unior d.d. holding an interest of 49.5% in the forgings producer and Dalekovoda 50.5%.
Year 2005- A contract is signed with DaimlerChrysler on 11 February to establish Starkom d.o.o. in Maribor, a joint venture to produce car parts that is registered in June. - Unior Aqua d.o.o. is established on 25 February in Pristina in Kosovo, Unior holding 60% of this mineral water and soft drinks producer. - A new hydraulic hammer is purchased at the forging plant. - Unior USA Corporation is established on 1 April to sell tools on the American market; the Illionis-based company is owned 100% by Unior. - The refitting of the galvanisation line is completed at the main production hall. - Unior Professional Tools is established in May; based in St Petersburg in Russia, The company is owned 55% by Unior and sells tools under the Unior brand. - Unior acquires 25.99% of Zlati grič d.o.o. in May. - The renovation of the nursing ward at Terme Zreče is completed. - Unior Australia Tools Company Co PTY Ltd is established in Melbourne on 19 July 51% owned by Unior, it sells hand tools. - Unior d.d. buys a 79.56 stake in ZASTAVA Alati d.o.o. of Kragujevac in Serbia-Montenegro on 1 September and Unior Components d.o.o. is established. - The new Status processing center at the Maribor plant comes on-line. - The prime minister and economics minister visit Unior d.d. on 7 September, meeting senior managers and viewing the production facilities. - Ningbo Unior Forgings Co.Ltd is established on 28 October in Yuyao in China; Unior owns 50% of the company, which has four forging lines at its plant.
Year 2006- In April, UNIOR TEPID S.R.L. was established in Romania. - A water bottling plant was built in Stranice - In October, Croatian President Mesič visited UNIOR`s showroom in Split. - The FPZ-250 flexible cell was chosen as one of the 50 best innovations at the presentation of entrepreneurial innovations and inventions in the scope of the Hevreka 06 forum. - In November, the UNIOR AQUA water bottling plant in Kosovo was opened. - In December construction of a six-seat ski lift was completed on Krvavec and put into use on 15 December.
Year 2009Due to the decrease in purchase orders and the deepening economic crisis, the company introduced a 36-hour working week in January, a 32-hour working week in March, and in July the company joined in the government’s measure of temporary lay-offs.
•The Supervisory Board nominated Mr Darko Hrastnik for the position of board member for the mandate period from 1 June 2009 to 31 May 2014.
•The sale of the Kosovo-based subsidiary UNIOR Aqua d.o.o.
•On 22 July 2009, the General Meeting adopted a resolution on a capital injection into the company.
•The General Meeting elected a new six-member Supervisory Board with a four-year mandate period from 13 December 2009 to 12 December 2013.
•UNIOR was successful in the public tender Neposredne spodbude za skupne razvojno investicijske projekte RIP 09 (Direct incentives for joint development and investment projects RIP 09). In the FOKKS project (Fleksibilna Obdelava Komponent Krmilnega Sistema – Flexible Processing of Control System Components), the issuer combined the interests and knowledge with Hidria Rotomatika d.o.o. The project was approved and scored very high marks in the assessment. The project is to receive around €2.6m in co-financing, of which Unior will receive around €1.2m and Hidria Rotomatika around €1.4m.
•In August, Unior Turizem obtained funding for additional tourist promotion via a tender published by the Ministry of the Economy of the Republic of Slovenia. With these funds, within the framework of the integration of tourist service providers at the Rogla-Pohorje destination, the issuer will carry out promotion on the Slovenian market, on the markets of neighbouring countries (Croatia, Hungary) and in several new destinations (Greece) at a level that will ensure a more pleasant, active and overall better spending of free time to guests and visitors. At the same time, the issuer will present Slovenia to guests from distant destinations as a unified destination that provides variety and diversity in a relatively small geographical area.
•In October, the issuer was awarded an environmental permit – Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control. The permit was awarded on the basis of the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control (IPPC) Directive (96/91/EC) and the Decree on activities and installations causing large-scale environmental pollution.
•In November, UNIOR sold its interest in Weba Maribor d.o.o.
•UNIOR was successful in the public tender Dozidava hotela v Zrečah (Extension of the Hotel in Zreče). The project will receive co-financing in the amount of €2,536,750.