Our history

Our company history begins as early as 1879 - a time when the first light bulb made the world shine in a new light and Hans-Curt Jaeger founded a metal goods factory in Lüdenscheid together with his brother Georg.

And thanks to the special pioneering spirit of the founders, the history of our company, which has combined the names Busch and Jaeger since 1926, took its course. Characterised by innovations in the areas of safety, comfort and economy - and that for over 140 years.

More than 140 years

Success has a history

The chronicle of Busch-Jaeger Elektro GmbH is characterized by numerous pioneering achievements and innovative products in the sector of electrical installation technology. 

What began with the founding of the Heinrich Jaeger barrel turning shop, today presents itself as a market-leading company in electrical installation technology with two locations in Germany. Busch-Jaeger Elektro GmbH, which has belonged to BBC (now ABB) since 1969, employs 1,300 people in its two domestic plants in Lüdenscheid and Aue (Bad Berleburg). 

The company exports to more than 60 countries around the globe. Licensing and manufacturing cooperations link Busch-Jaeger with partner companies in Spain, the Czech Republic, Finland and in Asia. The product range comprises around 5,500 items and extends from the complete electrical installation program to high-end electronic products for building management.

From the Edison lamp socket to modern building systems technology: company chronicle bears witness to inventive spirit and many innovative products.

    • The age of the switch industry

      New opportunities identified early on

      When the first incandescent lamp shone a new light on the world, the age of the switch industry began. The founding fathers of Busch-Jaeger recognized earlier than others the opportunities opened up by the new technology. Hans-Curt Jaeger, founder of the Heinrich Jaeger lampholder factory, devoted himself to the development of so-called SWAN lampholders for Edison lamps after a visit to the Paris World's Fair in 1881. Six years later - in 1887 - production at the Schalksmühle plant was expanded to include DC switches, sockets, toggle switches, plugs and lamp sockets. 

      Almost at the same time, the factory of Julius Bergmann and Friedrich Wilhelm Busch was established. Here, military items such as uniform buttons, buckles and belt locks were produced. A little later, the first electrical items were added.

      Economy of the 1880s.
      The first light bulb shines a new light on the world in 1880.

      Comfort of the 1880s.
      Development and production of lamp bases and sockets for more flexible use of Edison lamps.

    • .

      The pioneering spirit continues

      In 1892, about ten years after attending the Paris World's Fair, the Jaeger brothers acquired a pressing plant for the manufacture of insulating materials.

      The Busch eccentric switch achieved world renown.
      In 1899, the Busch eccentric switch immediately conquered the market and gave Friedrich Wilhelm Busch's company world renown. An invention that made it possible for the first time to turn a light switch to the left or right and was sold more than 50 million times worldwide and manufactured under license in many cases. 

      Comfort of the 1890s.
      Light is now available in the "turn of a hand" with the invention of the Busch-Eccentric switch.

    • First impulses

      Safety creates freedom

      In 1900, the headquarters of Busch-Jaeger Lüdenscheider Metallwerke AG was located in Lüdenscheid, Gartenstraße.

      Hans-Curt Jaeger was one of the first to set decisive impulses for more safety. In the Association of German Electrical Engineers, he was instrumental in drawing up safety regulations for the handling of electrical equipment as early as 1906. The results were published a short time later. 

      Safety in the 1900s.
      The first safety regulations are drawn up and the results published a short time later.

    • The first test fields

      Life is precious

      Around the turn of the century, light switches became available to everyone. However, their use was not without danger. One of the first testing facilities for electrical devices was set up in the Jaeger Brothers' company - the official VDE test center was not established until the 1920s. 

      Safety in the 1910s.
      The first testing stations for electrical devices are established. 

      Comfort of the 1910s.
      A complete range of electrotechnical household installation material is already on offer.

    • The spirit of invention

      Synergy effect instead of competition

      The inventive spirit of F. W. Busch AG in Lüdenscheid led to the development of the prototype of a dishwasher that was also a washing machine. A short time later, the "Busch-Wagen" was designed - an automobile of which, however, only three models were built and which never went into series production. 

      In the turbulent twenties and thirties, large-scale electrification caused the demand for electrotechnical articles to increase rapidly.

      New location in Aue.
      In 1925, the Jaeger Brothers acquired a disused charcoal and vinegar factory. This was the beginning of the modern production of electrical articles at the Aue site. Today, the assembly, plastics processing and toolmaking departments are located here. 

      In 1926, the Jaeger Brothers received the oldest "SCHUKO®" property right as a utility model. 

      In the same year, the companies Gebr. Jaeger and F.W. Busch AG merged. The newly founded company operated under the name "Vereinigte Elektrotechnische Fabriken F. W. Busch und Gebr. Jaeger AG". The merger of the two companies enabled the new company to drive the development and production of electrotechnical articles with even more energy. As a result, the company was also at the forefront when electricity networks were converted to 220 volts in the 1930s and the first rocker switches replaced the generation of rotary switches in domestic installations.


      Safety of the 1920s.
      The official VDE test center is established.

      Comfort of the 1920s.
      The prototype of a dishwasher and a washing machine in one product is developed.

    • Solutions for everyday life

      Making everyday life a little easier, more comfortable and safer day after day

      New technologies and appliances entered the households. The power grids were converted to 220 V. Busch-Jaeger developed the first toggle switches, which gradually replaced the generation of rotary switches in domestic installations. 

      From 1933, the Schafsbrücke metal works belonged to Busch-Jaeger Lüdenscheider Metallwerke AG.

      Economic efficiency in the 1930s.
      New technologies and appliances make their way into households.

      Safety in the 1930s.
      Electricity networks are converted to 220 V.

      Convenience in the 1930s.
      Busch-Jaeger develops the first toggle switches - they gradually replace the generation of rotary switches.

    • .

      From a necessity becomes a virtue

      Development and production progressed. In addition, electrification accelerated demand. 

      After the end of the war, production at Busch-Jaeger began with heating and cooking plates. The so-called "compensation goods" developed into an important export article. 

      After a large part of the manufacturing facilities had been rebuilt in 1948, production of the old production program could be resumed.

      Economy of the 1940s.
      "Compensation goods," such as heating and cooking plates, developed into an important export article.

    • The German economic miracle

      A new era of electrical installation technology

      The "German economic miracle" also ushered in a new era of electrical installation technology at Busch-Jaeger. The "Perilex " and "Terko" plugs and sockets successfully established themselves in the market and started the era of "safe electrical installation". With time, cam and pushbutton switches, further innovative new developments became established in the fifties. In addition, Busch-Jaeger developed a new three-pin safety system to complement the "SCHUKO®" technology. 

      In 1953, the flush-mounted rocker series switch "Busch-Duro 2000®" was introduced. 

      In 1957, Busch-Jaeger was one of the first manufacturers of rocker switches that enabled convenient operation.

      Economy of the 1950s.
      Previous designs are replaced by technically and economically better solutions.

      Safety of the 1950s.
      Beginning of the era of "safe electrical installations" with the PERILEX plug-in device at the Hanover Fair.

      Comfort of the 1950s.
      Innovative new developments increase living comfort. Toggle switches enable convenient operation.

    • The first dimmers

      Products for more comfort, safety and economy

      In 1960, a switch production plant was opened in Hamm. Until 1999, switch elements for the automotive industry were produced here. 

      When the first dimmers appeared on the market in the USA in the sixties, Busch-Jaeger very quickly recognized the importance of this product for greater living comfort and energy savings. In order to meet the strict regulations and the high technical demands of the German market, the idea was further developed and constantly perfected. 

      And as early as 1965, Busch-Jaeger was able to present one of the first incandescent lamp dimmers at the Hanover Fair (German premiere). This was followed in 1967 by the Busch dimmer for fluorescent lamps, which could now also be switched on and their brightness regulated without flickering. 

      In the course of the further development of electrical installation technology, Busch-Jaeger set new standards for safety technology: The SCHUKO® socket outlet, patented in 1962, offered more safety from the dangers of electricity in everyday life. 

      Also in 1967, Busch-Jaeger introduced the first screwless connection terminals for the switch series "Busch-Duro 2000® RS" - from now on, the cables were only clamped instead of screwed tight (picture: tape mounting of the switch base around 1965). This saved the electrician a considerable amount of time during installation. 

      In 1969, the company was given its present name, Busch-Jaeger Elektro GmbH. Under the umbrella of BBC (Brown, Boveri & Cie. AG, Mannheim - today ABB Group), the company henceforth concentrated on electrical installation technology, electronics and building systems technology.

      Economic efficiency in the 1960s.
      The first dimmers reduce energy consumption.

      Safety of the 1960s.
      The patented "SCHUKO" socket outlet with integrated increased protection against accidental contact offers more safety from the dangers of electricity in everyday life.

      Comfort of the 1960s.
      Incandescent lamp dimmers bring more atmosphere to the living area. Switches with enlarged operating rocker provide more hand freedom.

    • The new factory in Lüdenscheid

      Commonality strengthens

      1977, the company moved into the new Lüdenscheid-Freisenberg plant. Production, design, development, quality assurance, administration as well as dispatch and customer training center were combined on a company site of around 114,000 square meters. 

      Plastic spikes were produced until the eighties: For years, Busch-Jaeger was the European market leader as a manufacturer of plastic studs for winter tires.  

      After switch production, the Hamm plant even continued to manufacture switching elements for the automotive industry until the end of the 1990s. 

      Innovations at the Hanover Fair in 1973.
      In line with the trend towards greater convenience were electronic switches that respond to ultrasound, approach and touch. Here, too, Busch-Jaeger was one of the first manufacturers, for example with the successful "Busch-Tiptronik® switch". Here, in 1973, an immovable touch surface replaced the movable switching elements. Two years later, Busch-Jaeger Elektro GmbH presented its first flat switch, the "Busch-Duro 2000® LX", which made operating the light switch even more convenient and was produced in large numbers for 28 years. Elegant shapes and ease of operation were also in great demand among consumers from then on, and so the "Busch-Tipdimmer", which was operated only by touching a touch surface, advanced to become a bestseller. In 1978, Busch-Jaeger launched the "Busch-Infoton 2000® LX" intercom, which was also very successful as a flush-mounted device. The successor device "Busch-Infoton 2000®" was not only test winner at the "Stiftung Warentest" in 1986, but also winner of several design awards.

      Security of the 1970s.
      The intercom system "Busch-Infoton 2000 LX" is launched on the market.

      Comfort of the 1970s.
      Elegant shapes and ease of use: the "Busch-Tiptronik switch" and "Busch-Tipdimmer" respond to even a light touch.

    • Ther first Busch-Watchdog®

      Pioneer for comfort, safety and economy

      In the field of building system technology, the Lüdenscheid-based company became a pioneer throughout Europe in 1981 with the "Busch-Timac X-10®". This system made it possible for the first time to switch and control lights and electrical appliances in the home by remote control via the existing power supply network. 

      In 1986, "Busch-Infoton 2000® Babywächter" was awarded a prize by "Stiftung Warentest". 

      The switch series "Busch-Duro 2000® SI" is a success story in itself. Introduced in 1983 and still almost unchanged in the product range, this product has become the best-selling switch series at Busch-Jaeger to this day. 

      To the same extent that the topic of convenience became more important for all households in the eighties, this also applied to the topic of safety and economy. Here Busch-Jaeger developed an intelligent solution for the targeted switching of light sources with the "Busch-Watchdog®", first presented in 1987. The infrared motion detector reacts highly sensitively to the thermal radiation of moving bodies.

      Economy of the 1980s.
      Conscious use of resources thanks to infrared motion detectors.

      Safety of the 1980s.
      Safety in and around the house through infrared motion detectors.

      Comfort of the 1980s.
      Lights and electrical appliances in the house can be switched and controlled by remote control via the existing power supply system.

    • Busch-Powernet® EIB

      The "intelligent" house becomes reality

      In 1993, the blind control "Busch-Jalousiecontrol®" made it possible to operate several blinds by linking them in groups, in addition to time and brightness-dependent control. 

      A maximum of comfort, safety and economy was offered by "Busch-Powernet® EIB", a further development of "Busch-Timac X-10®". The system, also based on the 230 V power grid, was the first to integrate seamlessly into the world of the European Installation Bus (EIB/KNX). 

      Future-oriented home control technology that made it possible to individually control lighting, temperature, hot water preparation and blind actuation. Developments by Busch-Jaeger that have contributed significantly to the fact that the vision of the "intelligent house" has not remained utopia, but has long since become reality. 

      This technology has been and is being consistently developed further by Busch-Jaeger. Visually impressively documented by new, contemporary control elements such as the "Busch-triton®" presented in 1999, which also broke new ground in terms of design, and - most recently - by elegant "room and control panels" operated by touch screen.

      Company locations are expanded.
      In 1990, the Ramsloh logistics center was put into operation. Picking, shipping and returns management are handled here. In 1996, the production area at the Aue plant was expanded with the construction of a further production hall for injection molding production.

      Economic efficiency in the 1990s.
      Thanks to new building management technology, lighting, temperature, water heating and blind control can be regulated according to demand.

      Safety of the 1990s.
      Seamless integration of "Busch-Powernet EIB" into the European installation bus (EIB/KNX).

      Comfort of the 1990s.
      New home control technology that allows lighting, temperature, water heating and blind control to be operated individually.

    • 125 years and more

      Visionary entrepreneurs and ingenious inventiveness also in the new century

      125 years and more - a company history characterized by visionary entrepreneurs, ingenious inventiveness and many innovative product ideas.

      Quality consistently developed further.
      The motion detector "Busch-Watchdog® Presence tech" for demand-oriented control of lighting, heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems was introduced in 2001. The new generation of motion detectors, processor-controlled and equipped with triple sensors as well as mirror optics, offered a previously unknown level of perfection and functional reliability in conjunction with precisely definable monitoring areas. Highlight of the series: the "Busch-Watchdog® Alarmtech 220", in which additional technical features further optimize the alarm functions. 

      In 2003, "ocean", the new water-protected surface-mounted and flush-mounted range for damp rooms, was introduced to the market. 

      Busch-Jaeger Elektro GmbH now employs around 1,000 people at its Lüdenscheid and Aue plants. The company exports to more than 60 countries around the world. Licensing and manufacturing cooperations help to strengthen the associated and sister companies in Spain, the Czech Republic, Finland and Asia.

      Innovations 2004.
      Busch-Jaeger presents with the "Room and Control Panel" new comfortable control and signalling units for the systems "Busch-Installationsbus® EIB" and "Busch-Powernet® EIB". Also new: the "carat" switch series, which sets exclusive accents with its straightforward, elegant design and fine materials, and the "AudioWorld" multi-room sound system, whose loudspeaker and amplifier modules can be integrated into the normal flush-mounted installation. 

      In its anniversary year 2004, the product range of Busch-Jaeger Elektro GmbH comprises around 5,500 articles - from the complete electrical installation program to high-end electronic products for building management. Maximum product safety is guaranteed by a quality management system certified to DIN EN ISO 9001.

      Economy of the 2000s.
      Systems are expandable and offer practical additional functions.

      Safety of the 2000s.
      Highest product safety is guaranteed by a quality management system certified according to DIN EN ISO 9001.

      Comfort of the 2000s.
      The "Room and Control Panel" offers a new convenient monitoring and signaling unit for house installations.

    • Market leader in the field of electrical installation technology

      The claim remains

      In the past 131 years, Busch-Jaeger has become the market leader in the field of electrical installation technology. Today, Busch-Jaeger sees itself as a competent, efficient and reliable partner of the specialist electrical trade and the electrical trade and invests its experience both in future-oriented products and in solutions in the fields of electrical installation technology, electronics and building system technology. An essential criterion for the partnership relationship with the specialist wholesaler and the electrician is for Busch-Jaeger the clear commitment to the exclusively three-stage distribution channel: Wholesale, electrical trade, consumer. 

      It has long since been recognized that not only intelligent products are decisive for success on the market, but that the professional communication of specialist knowledge and know-how also plays a key role. Impressive proof of this is the modern customer training center in the Freisenberg industrial estate in Lüdenscheid - an attractive venue for specialist events, workshops and seminars in which customers from Germany and abroad can learn more about the company's products, systems and services. The inviting ambience of the training center is now also popular for a wide variety of cultural events - from art exhibitions to jazz concerts and from poetry readings to meetings of external organizations - which has contributed to the fact that an average of 15,000 guests are now welcomed here every year.

      Success through personal commitment.
      People determine success - this sentence has special meaning for Busch-Jaeger in several respects. At the beginning of the 20th century, it was Hans-Curt Jaeger, one of the company's founding fathers, who played a key role in the Association of German Electrical Engineers (VDE) in drafting safety regulations for handling electrical equipment, thus establishing a tradition that has been continued over the years by Busch-Jaeger through the development of numerous products to protect people and their belongings: from the "SCHUKO® socket outlet" with increased protection against accidental contact to infrared motion detectors and smoke detectors to emergency call and alarm systems. 

      But it is also the employees without whose commitment a successful path into the future would be inconceivable.

The logo development from 1885 to 1979