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175年的蔡司:为未来推动创新

2021-05-21 12:26:23 21

    公司的成功故事始于175年前的一个小作坊。1846年11月17日,年轻的机械师卡尔·蔡斯在耶拿开设了精密力学和光学车间,为当今全球技术参与者ZEISS奠定了基础。


ENA/OBERKOCHEN, Germany | 11 May 2021 | ZEISS Group

The company's success story began 175 years ago, in a small workshop. On 17 November 1846, young mechanic Carl Zeiss opened his workshop for precision mechanics and optics in Jena, thus laying the foundation for what would become today's global technology player ZEISS. Zeiss went on to join forces with physicist and mathematician Ernst Abbe 20 years later, which proved to be the first step toward the workshop's transformation into a fully fledged company. This collaboration also led to the company's close links to science forming a part of its DNA.

"ZEISS has a very unique and rather turbulent history. And its many technological milestones attest to its repeated - and successful - attempts to challenge the limits of what is physically and technically feasible. This unique innovative spirit has imbued the company with real staying power while helping both us and our customers to be successful," says Dr. Karl Lamprecht, ZEISS President and CEO.

Anniversary postcard from the Carl Zeiss Optical Works, 1896. It depicts the first workshop (Neugasse 7, 1846-1847), the second workshop (Wagnergasse 32, 1847-1858), the third workshop (Johannisplatz 10, 1858-1881) and the first buildings of what was to become the main factory (since 1881, ©ZEISS Archives).©ZEISS Archiv und ZEISS
Anniversary postcard from the Carl Zeiss Optical Works, 1896. It depicts the first workshop (Neugasse 7, 1846-1847), the second workshop (Wagnergasse 32, 1847-1858), the third workshop (Johannisplatz 10, 1858-1881) and the first buildings of what was to become the main factory (since 1881, ©ZEISS Archives).

A foundation-owned company: establishment and reform

By establishing the foundation in 1889 and publishing its statutes in 1896, Ernst Abbe defined how the Optical Works (today's ZEISS) and later Jena Glassworks (today's SCHOTT AG) would be managed and how their profits would be utilized. The Carl Zeiss Foundation is the sole shareholder of Carl Zeiss AG and SCHOTT AG. It is one of the largest and oldest private foundations in Germany committed to the promotion of science. Its main duties are to permanently secure the future of the two foundation companies and advance science.

ZEISS' ownership structure, i.e. as a foundation company, certainly has had a diverse impact. The foundation is prohibited from selling its shares in the two companies – this is explicitly stipulated in the Foundation statutes. Carl Zeiss AG and SCHOTT AG use the dividends to promote science and teaching in the fields of mathematics, computer science, the natural sciences and technology. Support is given to projects and individuals in the German federal states of Baden-Württemberg, Rhineland-Palatinate and Thuringia, where the Foundation and the Foundation companies are based. The non-profit activities are overseen by an independent Foundation Administration.

Division and reunification

The history of ZEISS mirrors German history and all of its highs and lows. World War I, the global financial crisis and World War II were years of ups and downs. In the aftermath of the second world war, the company was split into what would later become the combine VEB Carl Zeiss Jena and Carl Zeiss West Germany.

The American troops then took 77 selected employees from the ZEISS plant in Jena to Heidenheim in southern Germany. In 1946, Opton Optische Werke Oberkochen GmbH was founded as a subsidiary of the Carl Zeiss Foundation. The companies in Jena and Oberkochen continued to work closely together until 1953. Starting in spring 1953, Carl Zeiss in Oberkochen and VEB Carl Zeiss Jena began to go their own separate ways. The companies now operated independently, in a divided Germany, and developed in different ways.

That all changed with German reunification in 1989 and 1990, an event which underscored just how important it was for ZEISS in the east and west to once more grow as one. Following a lengthy process, the two companies were then rejoined to form a single entity. ZEISS underwent a deep crisis but emerged stronger than ever, and has developed into a successful global outfit.

Global growth and internationalization

The opening of the London branch back in 1893 paved the way toward internationalization. Global locations, entrepreneurial ventures, as well as acquisitions and strategic partnerships, have since led to ever greater internationalization for the company.

This forged a new partnership: in 1983, ZEISS supplied Philips with the first projection optics order. The joint venture between Philips and ASM International led to the creation of ASML in 1984, now the leading supplier of lithography systems and a strategic partner to ZEISS. Both of these heavyweights continue to shape a key process in chip production.

ZEISS is pursuing a global investment strategy that includes a series of international projects aimed at expanding, modernizing, and realigning sites in Germany, Europe and Asia. What's more, ZEISS is continuing to invest heavily in an optimized infrastructure, in state-of-the-art buildings and production facilities, and especially in accelerating the company's digitalization and sustainability. The latest investment was the new ZEISS Innovation Center at the site in Dublin, California (USA), which opened its doors just a few weeks ago.

Helping to shape the future

Today, ZEISS is a global technology leader and helps to advance the state of the art while using its solutions to drive the world of optics and its related fields. What safeguards the future of the company are its many success stories. For instance, ZEISS winning the German Future Prize (Deutscher Zukunftspreis) for its EUV technology in late 2020. ZEISS was also the first-ever company to be in two of the three shortlisted teams since the Prize was first awarded in 1997.

ZEISS has a long tradition of high expenditure on research and development. This also represents our investment in the future. ZEISS invests over ten percent of its annual revenue in research and development – in fiscal year 2019/20, it actually invested 13 percent in this area.

Optical technologies are vital for making progress in the life sciences, medicine, IT, telecommunications, automobile, consumer products and many other fields. The aim of every innovation at ZEISS is to go beyond just advancing the product by benefitting society.



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