1821 - Birth of the founder
On December 29 of that year, Jean-Pierre, the son of the couple Heintz, was born in Luxembourg. The happy event didn’t stand a chance of being mentioned in the
"Luxemburger Wochenblatt" newspaper, which at the time was the only one reporting for the approximately 10,000 residents of the city. Back then the parents had no idea that with their son they had given the country a personality that one day would go down in the history of the Grand Duchy’s economic life. 160 years later, the family continues this history, with unbroken consistency and an entrepreneurial spirit that is passed on from generation to generation. Among the middle-class families in Luxembourg which shaped the early days of the country’s economy, this success is a rare exception.
1847 - First retail shop of the family business
When Jean-Pierre Heintz, at the age of 25, opened his first tobacco factory with a shop in Neutorstraße No. 9 in July 1847, it was the beginning of a success story. Early that year, he married nineteen-year-old Josephine Van Landewyck. Since Dutch tobacco enjoyed an excellent reputation, Jean-Pierre put his name and that of his wife on the company’s nameplate.
1859 - First steam engine Luxembourg tobacco industry
The company of Jean-Pierre Heintz was successful. In addition to a property on "Großgasse", he also acquired an extensive building site on today's Limpertsberg. Heintz also rented the inner buildings of "Fort Berlaimont", located on today's "Boulevard Royal", where he set up the first steam engine (2 hp!) of the Luxembourg tobacco industry in 1870.
1881 - Booming business under Joseph Heintz
Joseph Heintz, son of Jean-Pierre Heintz, took over his father's tobacco factory on Bäderstraße, which experienced a significant boom under his leadership. Born in 1848, he was already involved in the company’s business at the young age of 22. The company, which quickly rose to the top of the then twenty Luxembourg tobacco factories, expanded its production of cigars and pipe tobacco.
At that time it had three tobacco factories in Luxembourg: on Bäderstraße, on Boulevard Royal and on Beckstraße. Environmental pollution turned out to be a problem for the tobacco manufacturer. The unbearable noise of the machines, an unhealthy odor and noxious fumes turned out to be a big problem for local residents. It was a problem that today is part of the zeitgeist: the environment.
1887 - Rise of the machines
Machines were gaining ground and were beginning to replace manual labour in factories. In 1887, Joseph Heintz bought an industrial building in Hollerich and planned to set up a modern factory.
1892 - Joseph Heintz takes over the management
Jean-Pierre Heintz died on October 30, 1892, leaving the sole management of the company, which was now called "Joseph Heintz van Landewyck", to his son. Heintz wanted to consolidate production in one place and sold the Limpertsberg site. Now there were 250 employees producing 90,000 to 100,000 cigars and 2,000 kg of all kinds of smoking tobacco, which already included smaller quantities of cigarettes, at the Hollerich plant every week.
1894 - National and international demand on the rise
The national and international demand for tobacco and its use was growing, so that in 1894 another tobacco factory for the production of cigars was built in Fels (near Luxembourg City). The industrial age had also arrived at Heintz van Landewyck.
1897 - New factory in Hollerich
50 years after the company was founded, Joseph Heintz opened the new tobacco factory in Hollerich, where 250 employees produced 100,000 to 300,000 cigars every week.
1905 - First semi-automatic cigarette machine
Victor Heintz installed the first semi-automatic cigarette machine in Hollerich. It must be assumed that he didn’t decide on this fundamental change on his own. The cooperative attitude within the family structure had become the company’s "style". A working mode that would prove itself in the future.
1911 - Founding of a capital company
Joseph Heintz is transforming his company into a stock corporation. The family’s sense of solidarity is strengthened, because all shares are held by family members.
1912 - Victor Heintz takes over Landewyck
After the death of Joseph Heintz on October 02, 1912, his son Victor took over the company and continued to run it with a sense of tradition and modernization in all areas.
But Joseph Heintz left significant gaps as a big industrialist with a vision, as "pater
familias" and as a person with social awareness and commitment. He stood up for those in need with his soup kitchen on
1920 - Establishment of the Economic Union
After World War I, the company wasn’t doing
so well. The end of the customs union, which favoured Luxembourg’s markets, led to the establishment of the Economic Union with Belgium, after an intended union with France was prevented by that country’s steel barons.
1925 - Establishment of a subsidiary in Trier
To rescue the traditional markets, the company now counted on Germany. A subsidiary was established in Trier. The number of soldiers is said to have been crucial for the decision, because soldiers bought a lot of cigarettes.
The management in Trier was taken over by Gilles Schaack, under whose leadership the company became the second largest smoking tobacco producer in Germany. In 1920, the cigar production in Fels, Luxembourg, was discontinued, because the focus now lay on cigarettes.
1931 - Aloyse Meyer takes over the management
On December 9, 1931, Victor Heintz died after an eventful life. But as a proactive man, he had already settled his succession early on. In the person of Aloyse Meyer, who at the time already was a figurehead of the steel industry, he had not only found a manager who promised greatness, but who was also married to Eugénie Heintz. Aloyse Meyer was appointed Chairman of the Board of Landewyck. Gustave Koener, who had already demonstrated his talent with Aloyse Meyer at ARBED, was appointed manager of the factory.
1934 - Management under Koener and Meyer
Robert Meyer, son of Aloyse Meyer and grandson of Victor Heintz, joined the family business as a young engineer and took over the management alongside Gustave Koener starting in 1939.
1939 - Takeover of Fixmer
After the death of his longtime friend Charles Fixmer, Gustave Koener took over his smoking tobacco and snuff company "Fixmer" in Ettelbrück. This marked the establishment of the first Heintz van Landewyck subsidiary in Luxembourg.
At the time, Landewyck and Fixmer’s production of smoking tobacco was primarily located in Ettelbrück, and cigarette production was moved to Hollerich.
In the same year, Landewyck was changed into a limited liability company with a capital of 9,000,000 Luxembourg Francs.
1942 - Landewyck during the Nazi regime
Luxembourg suffered under the Nazi terror, and Robert Meyer, who had “refused to give a guarantee”, was dismissed from his position as director only to regain it after the liberation in 1944.
1944 - New brand Maryland
Since exports had to be boosted in the post-war years and raw tobacco for the old bestsellers such as the "Africaine" cigarette was in short supply, Landewyck counted on a new brand: "Maryland". The cigarette was a great hit and took on the image of a cigarette for "everyone" in Luxembourg.
1946 - Landewyck enters the Dutch market
Belgium opened its borders and already imported 311 million Landewyck cigarettes in 1946. Landewyck captured a sizeable share of the Dutch market.
1950 - New brand Lexington
Due to the success in the Netherlands, the new "Lexington" brand was introduced. Five years later, a billion of these cigarettes were sold every year. The "Africaine" era gave way to the "Maryland" era and was then followed by the "Lexington" era.
1952 - Robert Meyer becomes sole Managing Director
After the death of Aloyse Meyer, an international heavyweight on the economic stage, his wife, the eldest daughter of Joseph Heintz, took over as chair of the Board of Directors. The same year, Gustave Koener retired and left the sole management of the company to Robert Meyer - who was supported in production by Theo Jung, a longtime Landewyck employee.
1957 - 110th anniversary
Anniversary celebrations at Landewyck: 110 years! Ten years earlier, in 1947, there was little reason to celebrate, so it was decided to forego celebrating the 100-year anniversary. Paul Weber, Director of the Chamber of Commerce in Luxembourg, wrote in a publication for the occasion: ... "The tobacco industry is one of the few Luxembourg industries to stand the test of time for more than a hundred years and to establish Luxembourg’s good reputation in the world".
1961 - Kent begins its career
The production of the "Lexington" brand reached a record level of 2.7 billion units out of a total of 3.3 billion cigarettes produced by Landewyck.
The following year, production of the same cigarette fell sharply to 1.7 billion units. A new era of the "Lorillard" brand had begun. The "Kent" cigarette, produced under license since 1958, began its career at Landewyck.
1963 - Marketing of the Kent brand
P. Lorillard S.à R. L. was founded in Ettelbrück as a "joint venture" and took care of the marketing and later of the production of the "Kent" and "Newport" brands. J. P. Thill was appointed Managing Director. Under his leadership, a new factory was also built in Ettelbrück. 95% of all production was destined for export, especially to Holland, Belgium, France and Italy.
1967 - Filter cigarettes gaining ground
In the wake of the global market success of filter cigarettes, Landewyck introduced the "Maryland Filter" in Luxembourg. By 1970, they had already surpassed the leading non-filtered "Maryland".
1968 - Production of smoking tobacco is moved
The production of smoking tobacco at Fixmer in Ettelbrck was discontinued and at first moved to Hollerich, later to Trier.
1969 - Introduction of the Ducal brand
As the price war intensified, the market trend turned to packs of 25 cigarettes in king-size format. Landewyck followed the trend with the brand "Ducal", which was introduced in 1969 with great success. The 25-pack was fast becoming a hit on the market.
1970 - Lorillard brand soaring
A strong decline in the sale of Lexington cigarettes starting in 1962 let production levels at Landewyck Luxembourg fall to a new low. But the Lorillard brand continued to soar. 1.1 billion cigarettes were produced in 1971. Lexington sales dropped to 300 million. This market for Landewyck had caved in and the company focused more on the German market. Brinkmann invested in Landewyck and now held 25.01% of the shares of the traditional family business.
1971 - Signing of a contract manufacturing agreement
Landewyck signed a long-term contract manufacturing deal with a Dutch cigarette group of global importance, which increased production by 30 percent.
1972 - Extension of the frontier zone "German border"
The 125th anniversary of the company. At the time Landewyck employed 300 workers who produced 2.5 billion cigarettes.
1972 also saw the beginnings of exploiting a market gap that went down in the company's history under the name "German border". It involved the "extension" of the border zone beyond the Moselle River, which brought Landewyck and other cigarette producers clear advantages due to significantly higher excise taxes in the Federal Republic.
1974 - Kent also successful in Europe
After the success of the "Kent" brand in the US, this cigarette also became a success in Europe, above all in the Benelux countries. The increase in demand required expansion of the plant in Ettelbrück. Ten years after its establishment, the Ettelbrück plant employed over a hundred workers, with annual production increasing to 1.5 billion cigarettes.
1977 - Fixmer in Luxembourg-Strassen
Fixmer was moved into a spacious warehouse in Luxembourg-Strassen. This was the beginning of a dynamic development in the wholesale business for tobacco and other products.
1978 - Production of hard-packs
The boom times of "Kent" cigarettes were over. The US partner sold the brand to the British conglomerate BAT (British American Tobacco). P. Lorillard s.à r. l. officially came to an end on June 30, 1978. A licensing agreement allowed Landewyck to continue producing and marketing "Kent" cigarettes. Landewyck focused on the production of "crush proof" hard packs, which were meant to replace the soft packs.
1980 - Ducal the big draw
The brand "Ducal" had become the mainstay of Landewyck’s production. The company’s 500 employees produced 3.5 billion cigarettes per year, most of which were sold the the Benelux countries.
1981 - Construction of own packaging machine
The first "Made by Landewyck" packaging machine was manufactured, which necessitated setting up an “Engineering” department. In 1996, this department evolved into "IMATEC" in Ettelbrück, which specializes in the manufacture of parts and maintenance of machines.
1982 - Cigarette production in Hollerich
The Trier plant stopped its production of cigarettes, all of which was then concentrated in Luxembourg-Hollerich. Smoking and fine-cut tobacco was still exclusively produced in Trier. The drastic increase in the sale prices of cigarettes in the Federal Republic of Germany, which was due to a steep rise in tobacco taxes, prompted the large German distributors to introduce low-priced cigarettes as their own in-house brands. Landewyck managed to secure a significant share of their production. In 1983, total production reached 4.6 billion.
"Ducal" was introduced on the French market. Above all, Landewyck succeeded in gaining a permanent foothold in Germany with this brand, thanks to the 24-cigarette pack for vending machines (while the competition usually offered packs of 22).
1985 - Merger of Fixmer and CdT
Fixmer in Ettelbrück, wholesale distributor since 1977, merged with "Comptoir des Tabacs" in Strassen under the new name "Fixmer-CDT".
1987 - Export to China
Landewyck in the meantime had acquired the brand "First". A first shipment was delivered to the People's Republic of China in 1987, which incidentally was an excellent year for international business.
1989 - New processing plant
A new processing plant was built in Luxembourg, since the old ones could no longer keep up with the production cycle.
1992 - Production of 5.3 billion cigarettes
By 1992, Landewyck already produced 5.3 billion cigarettes per year. Markets outside of Europe accounted for great successes, such as the "Bentley" cigarette in South-East Asia and the "Ducal" in West Africa. A new product appeared on the German market, the "Rolls" (also called "Quickies"). The plug tobacco was treated like fine-cut tobacco for tax purposes. For Landewyck, this meant the beginning of the "Lexington-Rolls". The introduction of this new product illustrates the fight of cigarette manufacturers against high taxation of their product. The State continues its opposition to cheap cigarettes, since these diminish tax revenue.
1993 - Majority interest in Róna
The partnership with a Hungarian tobacco manufacturer became reality when Landewyck acquired a majority interest in Róna on October 1, 1993. Sales of the "Ducal" cigarette were in decline because the competition now also produced packs of 25.
1994 - Positive balance sheet
From now on, the term "Landewyck" got sharper contours, with the parent company Heintz van Landewyck in Luxembourg, the company Fixmer in Strassen, Heintz van Landewyck in Trier and Róna in Debrecen forming the group. The financial results of the affiliated companies improved, which was reflected in their positive contribution to the consolidated balance sheet.
1995 - Róna looking to the future
The company Róna in Hungary opened a forward-looking sales and promotion department in Budapest.
1996 - Trier becoming independent PLC
The subsidiary in Trier became an independent PLC. Today, the factory in Trier, which specializes in smoking tobacco, produces about 100 tons of tobacco per month for the market in the Federal Republic of Germany.
The company is also very active in the field of cigarette marketing, in particular of the "Ducal" brand, whose sales in Germany almost reached a billion units.
The company "IMATEC" - "Innovative Machine Technology" – evolved from the engineering department.
In 1996, Landewyck’s production of cigarettes reached a record volume of 5.7 billion units. 13% of these were sold on the domestic market (compared to 19% in 1986), 62% on the other markets in the EU (80% a decade earlier). Overseas sales, on the other hand, increased by 12% to 25% over the same period. This development illustrates the progressive internationalization of the Group during the last twenty years. In 1996, the Group on average employed about 620 workers throughout the year, about 430 of them in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
1998 - New brand ELIXYR
1998 saw the introduction of the ELIXYR cigarette, which showed excellent annual growth rates.
2003 - Organisation by Landewyck Group S.à.r.l.
2003 was the year of major reorganizations. The organization is now headed by Landewyck Group S.à r.l., which defines the strategy of the Group and coordinates the organization of new business opportunities.
2007 - Merger with TORREKENS TOBACCO BELGIUM
Torrekens TOBACCO BELGIUM came into being through the merger of Heintz van Landewyck Belgium and Torrekens Tabakindustrie. The newly formed company is active in the cigarette and tobacco market and sells everything related to tobacco.
2013 - 165th anniversary
The 165th anniversary Landewyck Group - with 6 factories, 1800 employees, 26 brands, 37 markets and a production of 55 million units.