From small Switzerland to the wide World

Dutch LEMO

How can a niche market be reconciled with global expansion ? LEMO has chosen to foster quality human connections.

During its first 20 years, LEMO remained a national company. In the early sixties, 95% of sales were done in Switzerland, with only four key customers. Such limited presence representing a risk and the quality of connectors being a strong asset, why not open up to the world ? As of 1963, LEMO started developing its international distribution and technical service network. A year later, the first foreign subsidiary was opened in Milano. “ Made in Switzerland ” connectors set out to conquer the world. Rapid unbridled growth was out of the question. On the contrary, LEMO has stayed true to its principles : it is quality that counts first and foremost.

Connector (and its components) production has been kept in Switzerland. The company does not want to lose its family spirit, considered, to this day, as the backbone of its success. So, distributors and subsidiaries are created gradually, around personalities. The teams, first small, maintain fairly tight relations with the mother company. Sometimes, long-established distributors are acquired, who have a profound knowledge of the brand and its products.

LEMO started by introducing its connectors in neighbouring countries (Italy, France, Austria…) and in major markets : USA (sales since 1967, first subsidiary in 1972), Germany (subsidiary since 1969), United Kingdom since 1972.

In Asia, sales kicked off in 1973 in Japan, the undisputed capital of technological innovation at the time. A subsidiary was created in 1994. LEMO had been present in China since 1993 when it launched its subsidiaries in Shanghai and Hong Kong, in addition to offices in a dozen of cities. Singapore, opened in 2010, oversees offices in Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia.

Everywhere around the world the LEMO network expands and strengthens.

In Europe, for example, the Group’s presence was developed in the North, in early 2000 with subsidiaries opening in Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland. South America and the Middle East (reinforced in 2016 with a new office in Dubai) have not been left behind either.

Depending on market needs and local competencies, the subsidiaries are entrusted with missions in addition to sales. With cable or connector assembly (see the new REDEL site in Hungary). Some subsidiaries are considered as Group R&D centres – fibre optics in the UK, cables at NORTHWIRE… Some play an important role in regional distribution, another way to get close to customers. This is particularly the case of LEMO Benelux, hosting, since 2014, the European Distribution Centre and its large cable and connector stocks.

In parallel, LEMO seeks to build its sites into ambassadors of its innovation and excellence brand. From the award-winning LEMO USA building in Rohnert Park, California (2000) to the elegant bright-lit new Dutch site (2019). The spectacular LEMO UK building in Worthing (2010) or the superb new REDEL factory in Budapest (2011).

Today, the LEMO Group includes twenty subsidiaries and is present in more than 80 countries. Its staff has been gradually and constantly growing : 100 in 1970, 500 in 990, 1000 in 2000 and currently over 1800. A size that is small enough to maintain its solidary family spirit and big enough to offer to its customers a personalised service expected from a high-end company.

Strive to go always further without losing your soul : the secret of a successful expansion.