Karl-Otto Reinecke founded Megla Technik in Cologne in 1968 (“Megla” stands for “metal/glass”). Born in Cologne in 1926 as Karl Reinecke’s son, he was introduced to the everyday life of a German glazier at an early age and took over the parental business after the World War as a master glazier himself. After the glazier’s business was dominated in the post-war period by old-style repair and new construction frame glazing, in the 1960s Karl-Otto Reinecke focused on modern thermally insulated aluminium frame systems and later on frameless glazing. Together with Klaus Arp, then at IBEGLA (St.Gobain) – later Managing Director of DORMA Glas and in cooperation with Hans-Gerd Greferath, then at WSS Schlechtendahl and also later Managing Director of Dorma Glas, Karl-Otto Reinecke made a major contribution to the development of the so-called Studio Door System, now a classic, then a world first. In 1971 he introduced hydraulic automatic door systems in cooperation with a Japanese manufacturer, worked on and developed special and functional systems as well as innovative illuminated ceiling and floor systems. Numerous national and international objects bear his signature: Cologne-Bonn Airport, Plenary Hall of the German Bundestag in Bonn, Philharmonie Köln, French Pavilion World Expo in Brisbane, Australia, to name but a few. He has retired since 1992.
Karl Loggen founded the company KL-Beschläge (KL stands for Karl Loggen) in 1981, initially as a sole proprietorship, in 1995 as KL-Beschläge Karl Loggen GmbH in Windeck, Sieg. Born in Cologne in 1931, his father was orphaned early in the war. Instead of a sheltered childhood, like many others, he had to help to feed the family. He learned the profession of master toolmaker, worked for various companies in production, development and sales, most recently at Gebr. Willach in Ruppichteroth, and quickly made a name for himself as an ingenious developer, tinkerer and inventor. He developed drawer systems and other parts for interior fittings and in this context was also confronted with systems that were to include glass holders. In the seventies he then developed the so-called glass clamp, which is now a worldwide standard. He carved the first prototype out of wood – it is still in the company exhibition today. In the mid-seventies, after the oil crisis affected by unemployment, he had his clamp produced by his former colleague Günther Pauli, later he started his own production: in his garage. From the smallest beginnings the company grew steadily, so that in 1995 the company moved into a new building in the industrial area Eitorf/Sieg, until today the company headquarters. In 1992 Karl Loggen introduced the KL-Milano hinge, the world’s first completely infinitely adjustable shower door hinge to our knowledge, today an unsurpassed classic. Numerous other developments followed. Unfortunately Karl Loggen died much too early in 2004. In the obituary he was simply called “the inventor”.
The founding generation (Karl-Otto Reinecke in the second generation – Karl Reinecke had founded the company of the same name in Cologne in 1917) brought the know-how, inventions and early market introduction to the German market. KL-Beschläge and Megla Technik were two start-up companies that laid the foundations for success from the smallest of beginnings and with only little own funds.
With Peter Reinecke (in 1981) and Jörg Loggen (in 1990) the next generation joined the respective companies.
Dipl. Betriebswirt Peter Reinecke, born 1958 in Cologne, had spent several years abroad, mainly in North America. He specialized in international management and finance. He was about to choose between various offers from the financial sector and the oil industry in the USA when his father asked him to join the management of Megla Technik. He complied with this request, took over 25% of the shares and with Karl-Otto Reinecke’s departure also the rest and the management.
With Jörg Loggen it was similar, albeit somewhat later and more down-to-earth than internationally. The trained master butcher, also born in Cologne in 1963, was very successful in his profession early on and was about to accept a highly interesting offer to take over a larger meat processing company. He also received the request of his father – Karl Loggen – to join the management of KL fittings. He also complied with the request, received 25% of the shares in 1998 and was appointed managing director. After his father’s death, he took over the remaining shares.
Both Jörg Loggen and Peter Reinecke were decisively active in marketing, built up the customer network of both companies and worked on marketing concepts, but also at an early stage on general marketing concepts.
Jörg Loggen and Peter Reinecke met in 1997 when Peter Reinecke was looking for an innovative shower door system. A close cooperation soon arose. Both conducted joint training courses for customers throughout Germany and discovered that close cooperation could lead to synergy effects in many areas.
1998 saw the first legal merger, when Classtec, founded in Garching in 1995, was jointly taken over and relocated to Nümbrecht in the Oberberg region.
In 2000 Karl and Jörg Loggen and Peter Reinecke founded the joint sales company KL-megla GmbH as an international marketing company for the companies KL-Beschläge Karl Loggen GmbH (which still exists today) and Megla Technik GmbH (which was merged with KL-megla GmbH in 2001). KL-megla GmbH is thus the legal successor of Megla Technik, founded in Cologne in 1968, but 50% is owned by the owners of KL-Beschläge (Jörg Loggen) and 50% by the former owners of Megla Technik (Peter Reinecke). The younger generation, Jörg Loggen and Peter Reinecke have been managing directors from the very beginning. They turned two small German companies into a globally active group of companies.
The handover to the next generation is in preparation.
Expansion into a global company with a presence on at least four continents:
KL-megla® grew rapidly. In the first 10 years after the merger, the company has increased more than tenfold in size and importance according to all relevant economic data. And this only related to Germany. And then there is the international expansion.
In addition to the establishment of various German subsidiaries, one of the most important early decisions was the establishment of a large in-house development department, in which permanent investments were made.
The success of KL-megla® is based on three pillars: German innovation and development, German quality standards for materials and processing, and customer orientation from ease of assembly to detailed technical support.
From a flood of inventions with numerous patents, but also continuous further development of existing systems, the company slogan emerged: “the innovation company”. In addition to new solutions for structural glass construction and other industries, KL-megla® has created special connections for modern technologies in the field of lighting technology, solar technology, green technology in general, and for so-called smart and functional glass.
After partnerships with companies on all continents had already been established, the first foreign branch in China, Guangzhou KL-megla Pacific Co Ltd. was established in 2005. 2008 with KL-megla Pacific Ltd. the next in Hong Kong and in the same year KL-megla America LLC in Westlake, California, USA.
In 2012 KL-megla Architectural LLC was founded in Ft. Madison, Iowa, USA and a representative office was established in Australia. In Africa and South America, work will initially continue with partners.
KL-megla has four production facilities of its own, one in Germany, two in the USA, one in China for the respective core markets of Europe, North America and Asia/Pacific. Production close to the market combined with international marketing and corresponding synergies – this is the approach for the internationally interwoven market of the 21st century.
When success is the benchmark: KL-megla® is not only now a globally recognised label – KL-megla® is internationally regarded as a trendsetter for innovative products, not only for glass constructions.
KL®megla: the innovation company
1917 // Foundation of the company Karl Reinecke in Cologne
1952 // Karl-Otto Reinecke joins his father’s company
1968 // Foundation of Megla Technik in Cologne
1969 // Introduction of Studio Beschlag with the collaboration of Karl Otto Reinecke
1971 // Introduction of Japanese hydraulic automatic door systems in Germany
1979 // Development of the world’s first glass clamp by Karl Loggen
1981 // Foundation of the company KL-Beschläge Karl Loggen
1981 // Peter Reinecke joins Megla Technik GmbH
1990 // Jörg Loggen joins the company KL-Beschläge Karl Loggen
1992 // Introduction of the infinitely adjustable Milanobeschläge by KL fittings
1992 // Karl Otto Reinecke retires
1995 // Conversion of KL-Beschläge into a limited liability company and move to the Eitorf industrial estate
1998 // First joint venture between Peter Reinecke and Jörg Loggen: Takeover of Classtec
2000 // Foundation of KL-megla as a marketing company for KL fittings and Megla technology
2001 // Merger of Megla Technik with KL-megla GmbH
2005 // Foundation of Guangzhou KL-megla Pacific
2008 // Foundation of KL-megla Pacific in Hong Kong
2008 // Foundation of KL-megla America in California, USA
2012 // Foundation of KL-megla Architectural in Iowa, USA
2012 // Establishment of a representative office in Sydney, Australia
2017 // Jörg Loggen resigns from the management board