DOLLE HISTORY

DOLLE – serving customers for more than 70 years


Over 70 years ago, Carl Dolle founded the company in Bremen, Germany, in 1951. He was just 24 years old. The company initially focused on producing a simple range of wooden products that quickly shifted toward high-quality components. Carl Dolle’s vision was always to take “the steady way up,” which is why ladders and stairs soon became the company’s core products. In 1952, the first distribution warehouse was opened in Bremen. From then on, the company was on a successful path to growth. Other family members also contributed their business expertise to the joint undertaking. Carl’s wife Ursula joined the company in 1968 and established the DOLLE plastics processing plants in Bremen.

In 1982, DOLLE Treppen became a manufacturer when it founded its first production company, DOLLE A/S, in Frøestrup, Denmark, and has since grown into the world’s leading supplier of attic stairs and space saver staircases. The responsibility for the management of the company has now been passed on to the next generation. Matthias, the elder son of Carl and Ursula, also joined the management team at Dolle Treppen when he was 30 years old. He currently heads DOLLE Treppen in Bremen and the DOLLE Kunststoffe business division. The DOLLE Group was expanded in 1996 when it acquired the Brenneisen company. This new branch of business focused on the development and distribution of residential wall shelving throughout Europe and was renamed DOLLE Wohnregale in 1997. Stefan Dolle, the younger son, is in charge of this business division.
 

Carl Dolle founded the company in 1951

He never tired of lending a hand

The Dolle family 1997

Matthias, Ursula, Carl and Stefan

The Dolle Brothers

Stefan and Matthias Dolle


DOLLE STAIRS - founded in 1951 by Carl Dolle in Bremen.

Initially, the company focused on the production of a simple range of wooden products, which quickly evolved towards high quality components. Today DOLLE STAIRS is sold in more than 40 countries worldwide.
 

First exhibition 1953

Public Park in Bremen, Germany

Headquarter DOLLE Nordic 1982

Frøstrup, Denmark

Automated production

produces over 300.000 staircases/year

Loft ladders remain our flagship product, and DOLLE is recognised as the market leader in Europe for timber loft ladders. We also produce modular, spiral and space-saving staircases as well as a comprehensive range of banisters.

In the early 1980s, Carl Dolle took a decision that would change the future direction of the business. Along with his Danish business partner Erik Torrild, he began to manufacture staircases in Frøstrup, Denmark, where the two registered their loft ladder company under the name DHW. From then on, the business focused fully on helping people create space and gain safe access to loft areas. Later, in 1992, the manufacturing company was renamed DOLLE to ensure a uniform brand image worldwide.

The Danish factory covers more than 18,000 m2 and uses cutting-edge technology. It is the epicentre of the company’s production, featuring two unique and highly automated production lines for loft ladders. Ladders and stairs are regularly removed from ongoing production and inspected to ensure consistent compliance with the highest quality standards. The plant boasts ISO 9001 certification, and all DOLLE attic ladders are produced in accordance with the EN 14975 guidelines.

DOLLE launched its first take-home spiral staircases based on the unit construction principle in 1988, followed in 1997 by production of wooden modular staircases to complete the range.

More than 300 dedicated employees today manufacture DOLLE products at our three factories in Denmark, China and the Ukraine. The Chinese factory in Suzhou is responsible for manufacturing metal components and is the main production centre for our PROVA handrail and banister system. Based in Uzhhorod, our Ukrainian production plant operates our entire timber supply chain, including forestry, sawmilling and the manufacture of the FSC-certified solid wood components that are forwarded to our Danish factory. Each factory specialises in one specific task in the production process and operates in tandem with a strong network of sourcing partners.

DOLLE has been "the safe way up" for more than 70 years. Its success is attributable not only to the vision and creativity of Carl Dolle, but also to the commitment of every employee at the DOLLE Group – not forgetting the loyalty of all the faithful customers who have accompanied us on our journey. Today, as ever, we are still committed to meeting your design needs, giving you inspiration and freeing up space for a simpler, more comfortable life.


DOLLE Shelving - founded in 1982

What is today DOLLE Shelving started in 1982 as Brenneisen GmbH. In the mid-90s, the DOLLE Group acquired Brenneisen and has since been operating under the name DOLLE Wohnregale GmbH & Co. KG
 

Innovative shelving

made of wood, metal and glas

Product development

Ideas, design and conception

Logistics

Guaranteed Supply Chain

The business was established as Brenneisen GmbH in 1982. The DOLLE Group acquired it in the mid-1990s and changed its name to DOLLE Shelving at the turn of the millennium. The business is based in the central German Rhine-Main region, around 20 minutes south of Frankfurt by car – an excellent location from a logistical perspective. From small beginnings, the volume of trade swelled alongside explosive growth in the German DIY market. DOLLE Shelving was quick to adapt to the new demands of this growing industry – with innovative DIY products, appealing POS presentations, over average supply chain fulfilment and an outstanding sales and merchandising organisation.

The shelving assortment and range portfolio was continuously expanded following the original acquisition of the business. Today, DOLLE Shelving markets the entire spectrum of consumer shelving and brackets for wall mounting, skillfully made as one-stop shopping solutions. The range of materials includes wood, metal and glass, but also trend materials like steel and aluminium.

More than 60% of our current turnover is generated by selling products that did not exist three years ago – a clear indication of the innovative strength of this predominantly "home-style focused" range. We give top priority to product development - constantly developing new product ideas in-house and launching two new ranges every year. Product design, packaging and presentation concepts are all created in house, while various components are sourced globally.

Export activities too have accelerated sharply. DOLLE product ranges are now sold in most European key markets, e.g. Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, UK, Scandinavia, Belgium but also internationally in the US, South America, South Africa and Australia

An important step toward safeguarding the future was taken at the start of the new millennium. Newly built in just seven months, our new logistics and office centre in Gross-Rohrheim was opened in November 2000. These investments were enabled by the growth enjoyed in previous years and had become necessary to make the flow of logistics and general operations more efficient. At the same time, by expanding our high-bay warehouse and our office space, we created ideal conditions for further expansion in the future.


DOLLE PLASTICS  – founded by Carl Dolle in Bremen in 1968

At the end of the 1960s, building construction and civil engineering began to use more innovative plastic products as building materials. Today, DOLLE plastics sells construction plastics, industrial plastics and products for the 3-D advertising sector. The customers are as diverse as the product range, ranging from the building materials trade, trade fair and store construction, advertising, technical trade, factory building, mechanical engineering and container construction to crafts and the manufacturing industry.
 

"HAFA" exhibition 1969

Bremen, Germany

DOLLE Plastics warehouse, 1976

Bremen, Germany

Today's "State of the Art" warehouse

Extensive product range

DOLLE Plastics came into being in 1968 and today sells construction plastics, industrial plastics and products for the 3D advertising sector. Our customers are as varied as the product range itself, representing everything from the building materials trade to trade fair and store construction, advertising, technical trading, factory hall, machine and tank construction, to skilled crafts and the manufacturing industry.

Toward the end of the 1960s, complementing traditional building materials with innovative plastic products emerged as a new trend in building construction and civil engineering. Managing Director Ursula Dolle understood the opportunities that marketing these construction plastics would present and therefore launched the DOLLE Plastics business in Bremen. Roofing panels, balcony facings and façade cladding formed the initial range for outdoor construction applications. In the early 1990s, semi-finished plastic products from acrylic glass and polycarbonate were added to the portfolio, alongside rigid PVC foam sheets and, later in the decade, technical plastics.

The Bremen plant is today flanked by satellite sites in Lehrte (located near Hannover/Niedersachsen) and Bad Köstritz (located near Gera) in the state of Thuringia. Balcony facings and façade cladding are the focal products at the latter facility, while Lehrte specializes in technical plastics and plastics for advertising purposes. Sawing capacity at this plant is dimensioned to handle high-precision volume production. All three facilities work closely together to ensure that the entire spectrum of construction, industrial, advertising and technical plastics can be stocked and traded at each site.

Continuous expansion of our plastics processing machine park has significantly widened the range of services on offer. All trimming, drilling, milling and edge finishing work is handled in house. Customer consulting is another of our key strengths: Here again, projects for roofings/coverings, strip lighting, façade cladding, signage and exhibitions are all handled in house, with the perfect materials for each application. 75% of orders are tailored, milled or otherwise processed specifically to the customer’s specifications.