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Annual Report 2016

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Our way to the top


Our way to becoming the world market and technology leader began in the year 1834. Mergers of leading refractories companies during more than a century have formed the basis for the position we hold today.

Overview of our history

1834: establishment of the fireclay factory Chamottefabrik F. Didier in Podejuch by Friedrich Ferdinand Didier near Stettin (then Prussia, today Poland). 

1881: Carl Spaeter discovers the magnesite deposit in Veitsch (Styria, Austria).

1899: establishment of Veitscher Magnesitwerke Actien-Gesellschaft.

1908: discovery of the magnesite deposit at Millstätter Alpe (Carinthia, Austria) by mining engineer Josef Hörhager. Emil Winter, a German-American, acquires the mining rights and founds the Austro-American Magnesite Company

1919: Atilio Franchi establishes Dolomite Franchi, a company manufacturing dolomite-based refractory products, in Marone, Italy.

1959/60: Veitscher Magnesitwerke establishes the research and development institute in Leoben, Austria, which is still based there today.

1987: management buyout of the American General Refractories Co. - Radex Heraklith Industriebeteiligungs AG is created.

1993: merger of the two traditional Austrian companies Radex Austria AG and Veitscher Magnesitwerke Actien-Gesellschaft to form Veitsch-Radex AG
Acquisition of majority stake in Dolomite Franchi.

1995: acquisition of majority stake in Didier-Werke AG.

1998: establishment of RHI AG, then a holding company.

1999: takeover of GIT/Harbison-Walker, USA.

2001: deconsolidation of GIT/Harbison-Walker within Chapter 11 proceedings.

2006: sale of Heraklith AG. The strategic reorientation with a focus on refractories is completed.

2007: integration of Monofrax, the leading supplier of fused cast refractory products for the glass industry.

2008: acquisition of two ISO plants from Foseco.

2010: 100% takeover of Didier-Werke AG.

2011: takeoveor of RHI Normag AS, RHI Podolsk Refractories and Premier Periclase Ltd.

2012: 100% takeover of Stopinc AG.

2013: acquisition of 69.9% stake in Orient Refractories Ltd.

2016: sale of Monofrax.