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Company History

How Reichle & De-Massari Shapes the World of Communication

It all began in 1964 with a revolutionary telecommunications outlet. Hans Reichle and Renato De-Massari had a product idea which was to facilitate work for installers. And with this idea, they also laid the cornerstone for Reichle & De-Massari AG (R&M).

Both always looked ahead into the future of communication technology which is how they were aware of the need for new connectivity products at an early stage. R&M set standards with innovations such as the Reichle connector. But at that time, the founders had no idea just how successful their company would be 55 years later.

Today, the company has around 1,300 employees in more than 40 countries. It is their goal to offer customers top-quality network technology for communication networks. And with it, R&M makes a contribution to secure voice, data and video transmission in buildings, data centers, cities and entire countries.

2020

Solid Results in the Year of the Pandemic

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The economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as negative currency effects have a negative impact on R&M Group sales. But in view of the exceptional situation in the financial year 2020, the company achieves solid results. R&M’s business model proves very resilient. The Group remains capable of acting at all times due to its fast-acting and digitally organized crisis management and thanks to its decentralized supply chain. The production plants in the East of the US and in China, acquired in the previous year, are modernized and reopened. This enables R&M to massively extend its regional offering in the US and in Asia.

The demand for FTTH increases dramatically in 2020. Some regions record double-digit growth rates in this segment. The success can be put down to, among others, products that were launched just recently, such as PRIME ODF and the Polaris Box family.

Data center operators rely increasingly on R&M’s compact Netscale platform and implement the new infrastructure management software inteliPhy net.

On August 1, 2020, a further milestone in the history of R&M was celebrated: 20 years of Cat. 6 and at the same time 100 million modules that were produced over the last twenty years.

The demand for bandwidth will continue to increase all over the world. The R&M portfolio is ready to satisfy this demand. New solutions for the megatrends 5G, edge data centers and digital building services are under development.

The Covid-19 pandemic sweeps the world at breakneck speed. The coronavirus determines the everyday life of the world’s population. Joe Biden becomes the 46th President of the United States of America. At his side: Kamala Harris, the first woman to hold the office of Vice President of the United States.

2019

Continuous growth and two acquisitions

Digital Buildings

R&M is growing solidly in 2019 in spite of the challenging market environment. Strategic acquisitions in the US East Coast and in China strengthen R&M’s position in its largest sales markets. The product range for the three market segments Data Center, Public Networks and LAN Cabling will be further expanded and the digital range will be enlarged. Customer-specific webshop solutions are being implemented in several countries. The successful launch of innovative products contributes to success and opens up new opportunities for the future. In the coming years, R&M will invest in new telecom market segments, especially in comprehensive solutions in the areas of mobile communications, smart cities, smart buildings, and smart networks.

A dozen new products are being launched by R&M in 2019 – more than ever before in a single fiscal year. Particularly worthy of mention is the new distribution platform Netscale 72 with the DCIM software inteliPhy net.

Thanks to the innovative strength of the company, R&M now covers the entire connectivity range.

Climate change is on everyone’s lips and young people, in particular, are fighting a committed battle against it – esp. Greta Thunberg from Sweden. Space travel celebrated the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing

2018

Most successful fiscal year since R&M was founded

2018 will be the most successful year in the company’s history. In January, the company is honored for its exemplary corporate management in and for the economic region of Zurich. With the takeover of the Czech fiber optic manufacturer DIXI a.s., R&M expands its expertise in the development and production of fiber optic cables. In August, a state-of-the-art plant for the manufacture of fiber optic products is inaugurated in Bangalore, India. Both plants produce solutions for data centers and FTTx applications.

At the Data Center World in London, R&M presents the “Telco Edge”, a micro data center for cloud edge infrastructures. With “PowerSafe”, R&M introduces a quality seal for Power over Ethernet applications. In the fall, the “Better Connected” initiative is launched to prove that R&M’s high-quality networks help customers save money and time throughout the entire life cycle of fiber optic data networks.

Dream wedding in Great Britain – Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle marry at Windsor Castle.

2017

Good result for previous year confirmed

R&M can look back on 2017 as one of its most successful years to date, and one in which it continued to develop as a leading provider of fiber optic solutions. R&M solutions are being used in the construction of the world’s largest airport in Istanbul. The takeover of Brazilian firm PETCOM should enable significant developments in the company’s regional market position. R&M now has production facilities in seven different countries. The market position for hyperscale data center customers continues to see positive development. The SYNO Splice Closure and Polaris Box have enabled long-planned partnerships to be concluded with the world’s leading carriers. The ultra-high density platform Netscale and the infrastructure management system R&MinteliPhy are setting the standards in the data center market. In LAN cabling, R&M is able to provide solutions for intelligent buildings, digital ceiling and POLAN. R&M is supporting the introduction of the dual professional education system in Bulgaria, based on the Swiss model, and is training young people there as electromechanical engineers.

Emanuel Macron is elected as the new President of France in May with 66% of the vote. North Korea carries out a number of provocative missile tests.

2016

R&M USA Inc. is founded; the company is clearly focused on the future

R&M further improves its performance and ends the year with excellent results. New pioneering products, such as the Netscale system for Data Centers and the SYNO gel dome closure for Public Networks, are launched. With the acquisition of REALM Communications Inc. in Silicon Valley, the company is active as R&M USA Inc. in the North American market as from May 2016 and therefore on all continents. The Values for Success reinforce the corporate values with regard to the future. A new company motto is also launched at this time: We provide connectivity that matters.

In June the opening of the Gotthard Base Tunnel took place, with a length of 57 Km the world’s longest railway tunnel. Donald Trump was elected unexpectedly 45th president of the USA.

2015

Success Despite Strong Headwinds

At the very start of the year, the Swiss National Bank abolishes the minimum exchange rate of CHF 1.20 to the euro, placing Switzerland under enormous pressure. Export-oriented companies like R&M must quickly find ways of adapting to the new situation. Thanks to the consistent implementation of a cost-saving program and a lot of hard work on the part of all employees, turnover in 2015 still saw a slight increase. R&M opens new subsidiaries in Morocco and Brazil. R&M expands its portfolio in the carrier market with UniRack2 and FibereasyRack2. With the FM45 Cat. 6A and the FO Field 1.1, R&M launches two even more powerful field-installable connectors onto the market. The Cat. 6A module sells so well that production can be doubled.

Hundreds of thousands of refugees seek shelter in Europe this year. Relations between Cuba and the USA begin to thaw and political relations are once again established after 50 years. FIFA is shaken by a corruption scandal.

2014

50 Years R&M

R&M introduces the HD SCM street cabinet for 1728 splice connections. This is a world record in this segment. In early March R&M acquires the business activities of AFS India and employs now a workforce of more than 800 employees worldwide. R&M announces strategic partnerships with Fluke Networks, Finisar and Xena Networks. The Cat. 6A Easy Lock sets new standards in the installation of twisted copper cables. R&M celebrates its 50 years anniversary at HQ and international subsidiaries with employees and business partners. Video – “The first 100 years of R&M” In the anniversary year the company increases turnover and EBIT significantly compared to the previous year.

Latvia joins the euro zone as 18th member. Germany wins the 2014 world soccer championship in Brazil. Switzerland wins the Tennis Davis Cup first time in history. End of the year the famous entertainer Udo Jürgens died near his residence in Switzerland.

2013

Encouraging business trend

Under its new CEO, R&M was able to increase its sales by 7% and double its EBIT. R&M opened new offices in Brazil and Turkey. Business in the data center segment got a big boost when R&M won out over a tough field to land a data center project for Philipp Morris. There were also major FTTx contracts, especially from the Middle East. The InteliPhy marked the first time R&M launched a system for the automatic control of networks. The company also scored a big hit with the field terminable FO Field connector. Another new product was the HD MPT. R&M prepared the new Corporate Social Responsibility Report in accordance with the GRI Guidelines for the first time, impressively underscoring its sustainable conduct as a company. On a roadshow, R&M traveled to customers in Switzerland, Germany and Austria in a modified bus to present its solutions for data centers and FTTx. R&M intends to visit other countries in 2014. There is no doubt: R&M is equipped for the future.

A new pope was elected. Pope Francis became the first South American to serve in this position. Switzerland qualified for the 2014 world soccer championship in Brazil. Nelson Mandela died late in the year. His death moved the entire world.

2012

First external CEO

Chairman of the Board of Directors Hans Hess ran R&M as interim CEO also operationally until the end of August. Then, Michel Riva took over at the helm of R&M on September 1, 2012. On October 2, the new FO production facility in Sofia was officially opened in a ceremony also attended by Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev. Besides strengthening the strategically important position of R&M in the EU and in Southeastern Europe, this plant was a response to demand for FO technology on the world market. The company geared its efforts fully toward future market trends. FTTx, data centers, and office cabling were the focal segments.

In New York City, Sotheby’s auctioned off a version of Edvard Munch’s iconic painting “The Scream” for USD 119.9 million, making it the most expensive work of art to have ever been sold at an auction. London hosted the XXXth Olympic Games. Roger Federer won Wimbledon for the seventh time. With 17 Grand Slam titles and 302 weeks at No. 1, he holds the record in these categories.

2011

R&M no longer run by the owners

After 12 years at the helm of the company, Martin Reichle decided to seek a new CEO to advance the company’s growth strategy at the strategic level more energetically in the future. Chairman of the Board of Directors Hans Hess took over as interim CEO. R&M unveiled a new distribution platform for street cabinets, a new high-density panel for data centers and a new cable management system. The company also received two awards. The first was the iF Product Design Award for the Cat. 6A module because of this product’s space-saving design and ease of installation. The second was a Silver Dolphin in Cannes for the corporate film “Error Message”.

Following the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on March 11, a series of accidents occurred in several reactors at the Fukushima I nuclear power plant in Japan, leading to serious consequences. The wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton in London in April was a joyful media event that captivated the world. Millions followed the ceremony on TV.

2010

Official opening of the R&M Cube

SAP was rolled out as the new ERP system at company headquarters. R&M completed the biggest investment in its history, the new Cube at Binzstrasse 32, and moved into this new complex. The owner family thereby set the future long-term direction of the company. The Optical Distribution Frame (ODF) became a big seller. The ODF allows large numbers of optic fibers to be connected and distributed in a tiny space. The year also witnessed the launch of Raceway, a cable laying system ideal for data centers and for central distribution systems for network operators.

The Deepwater Horizon, an offshore oil rig leased to BP, sank after an explosion in the Gulf of Mexico. The clouds of ashes following the eruption of the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajökull brought European air traffic to a standstill. Thirty-three miners trapped in a Chilean mine were rescued after having been cut off from the outside world for weeks.

2009

Investments in the Middle East

In the United Arab Emirates, R&M opened up its second regional supply chain hub. This hub enables the company to serve the important future markets in the Middle East more intensively. R&M set new standards for offices and data centers with its newly developed Cat. 6A module. The angled panel, a solution for data centers, improved the handling on the rack while the new LC Duplex generation was the first to contain laser protection and a lock for locking up the connector. With these safety features, LC was now able to be used more easily in office buildings, residential buildings and highly compact computing centers. An outlet for Fiber.to the Home (FTTH) was also launched.

Swine flu was declared a pandemic. Companies and public institutions were required to take hygienic measures to prevent the possible outbreak of this disease. Completion of the highest skyscraper in the world, an architectural masterpiece. The Burj Khalifa is located in Dubai and is 828 meters high. US singer Michael Jackson, King of Pop, died completely unexpectedly in the summer.

2008

Pilot hub in Singapore

The Asia hub in Singapore opened as a pilot project. Work also began on the roll-out of a new forward-looking ERP system intended for use worldwide. Several new products were unveiled once again such as the VDSL splitter, RMS45, and Global 2U patch panel.

The summer was dominated by the XXIXth Olympic Games in Peking. Millions of people watched the spectacular opening celebration. Just three months before, China had suffered a deadly earthquake with a magnitude of 7.9, which killed over 70 000 people. Barack Obama was elected 44th president of the United States, becoming the first African-American to hold this office.

2007

First outsider as Chairman of the Board of Directors

A further step was taken in the transition to the next generation of owners. Hans Reichle stepped down as chairman of the Board of Directors. Hans Hess was named his successor. R&M put in a sterling business performance for the fifth consecutive year. Since 2002, it had doubled the size of its workforce and its sales. On the production side, one highlight was the innovation award for the FM45, a field terminable RJ45 connector. Other new products included the U-Box, the CATV cable-TV solution, the FiberModule, VARIOLine and the Patch Guard for FO connectors.

A major financial crisis rocked the US and then the entire world. Total losses sustained in the three-year crisis have been estimated at USD 4.1 trillion.

2006

Lightning-fast start in India

The export markets developed quite positively. By this year, R&M was making 75% of its sales abroad. The market organization in India got off to a lightning-fast start. With offices in Bangalore, Delhi and Bombay, R&M now began serving the booming IT market in India. It put a flexible wiring duct, DRM45, Plug&Lock, SLIM and HTU (home termination unit) on the market.

Communist Cuban politician Fidel Castro, president of Cuba since 1976, handed over the reins of office to his brother Raúl citing health problems. The Nathu-La Pass on the border between India and China was opened to traffic again after having been closed for 44 years.

2005

Expansion of the market position

R&M further improved its market position particularly with growth abroad. One vital step was the company’s successful entry into the Chinese market, where it opened a representative office in Shanghai. With the StarReal10, R&M launched a solution for 10GBit Ethernet on the market.

Angela Merkel became the first woman to become German chancellor. The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich (ETH-Zürich) set a new world record for fuel efficiency. The Pac Car was able to go over 5000 kilometers on one liter of gasoline. The vehicle was driven by a hydrogen-powered fuel cell.

2004

Fit for the future

Hans Reichle wrote a book about the history of R&M over these four decades. R&M issued a new mission statement under the motto “fit for the future.” The company espoused the same basic values it had when it was established. It still focuses on continuity, sustainable development and customer orientation, trust and mutual responsibility. The SC-RJ FO connectors developed by R&M became the preferred industry standard because of their compact design.

Over 200 000 people died in a tsunami in the Indian Ocean. Roger Federer became the first Swiss man to become the No. 1 ranked tennis player in the world.

2003

New market segments

Along with classic solutions for carrier cabling and enterprise cabling, R&M now added products and systems in the industrial cabling and residential cabling segments. R&M unveiled its innovative RCC45 at the trade shows and sparked a lot of interest. It was the first time the incoming supply for the device or plastic optical fibers had been additionally integrated in an RJ45 module. The trend to expanded generic cabling prompted R&M to devise total solutions for communication and mains-current cabling all the way to the workplace.

The US military marched into Iraq and occupied Baghdad. The Third Gulf War began. After a 16-day stint in space for research purposes, the US space shuttle Columbia headed back to earth but broke apart shortly before landing. All crew members died. The last VW Beetle rolled off the assembly line in Mexico. With total sales of 21.5 million, it was the biggest selling car ever.

2002

Concentration on core areas of expertise

The abrupt end of the stock exchange frenzy left people everywhere noticeably sobered. The economic slump continued and investments were reduced to a minimum. R&M now focused on precisely defined main target markets and core areas of expertise. With its founding of the Copper and Fiber Optics Innovation Group, the company was able to invest efficiently in new products. R&M succeeded in gaining market shares in this difficult year.

A century flood caused horrendous damage in several countries in Central Europe. Steve Fossett managed to circumnavigate the globe in a balloon in 13 and a half days.

2001

System solutions for LAN

The bottom suddenly fell out of the telecommunication market, mirroring the general global economic trend. In the meantime, exports accounted for about 75% of business. R&M continued investing in innovation and quality. CLASSIC, STAR and VISION were launched as system solutions in the LAN segment. Splash Line, the latest product innovation featuring dust and moisture protection, rendered networks even more fail-safe under unfavorable conditions.

George W. Bush Jr. became the new US president. About 3000 people were killed in terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington D.C. Millions of TV viewers watched as the suicide attackers from Al-Qaeda flew passenger planes into the World Trade Center causing the planes to explode and both towers of the structure to collapse.

2000

Passing away of Renato De-Massari

The much-esteemed company co-founder Renato De-Massari died on July 4 at the age of 66. He was an exemplary leader and highly respected by business partners and employees alike. A new standard was being prepared in the national and international standard-setting bodies with the Cat. 6 to cover yet another increase in transmission capacity for local area networks (LANs). R&M actively collaborated with these bodies. In doing so, R&M became the first manufacturer worldwide to market top-line Cat. 6 modules produced fully automatically. In that same year the world’s most modern production plant for 100% in-line tested RJ45 Cat. 6 connector systems went into operation. Fiber optics production concurrently moved into a new facility and saw constant further expansion. R&M scored another big hit with its VS compact distribution system.

In March 2000 the dot com bubble burst. This global event caused huge financial losses for investors. Vladimir Putin became president of Russia.

1999

Generational change

Hans Reichle withdrew from the operating business and handed the reins of company management to his sons Martin and Peter. Hans Reichle continued to be Chairman of the Board of Directors. Reichle & De-Massari was replaced as a logo with the shorter R&M. The 10th million Cat. 5 module rolled off the assembly lines.

The euro was introduced as the standard currency in eleven countries in the European Union. An impressive total solar eclipse could be seen over Europe and Western Asia, a fitting event to mark the final year of the decade, the century and the millennium. The turn of the millennium triggered various speculations beforehand. Fortunately, many of the anticipated problems did not materialize, such as the Y2K bug, for example, that had been expected to cause such massive computer problems. Bertrand Piccard from Switzerland and Brian Jones from Great Britain became the first to circumnavigate the world in a balloon.

1998

Rapid expansion abroad

Expansion abroad proceeded at a rapid pace. Further subsidiaries were established in Dubai, Austria and Hungary. The number of employees worldwide hit 438, with 333 of them working in Switzerland. R&M commenced its own production of fiber-optic connector systems. The SC-RJ FO connectors were launched.

US President Clinton floundered in the midst of the Lewinski scandal. The European Central Bank came into being. The search machine Google was unveiled at Stanford University, California.

1997

Fully automatic production for RJ45

An ultra-modern fully automatic production plant was put into operation for the RJ45 direct connectivity modules. Three further subsidiaries were founded: Reichle & De-Massari Ukraine Ltd., Reichle & De-Massari Malaysia and Reichle & De-Massari do Brasil Ltda.

Great Britain returned Hong Kong to China. The world ground to a halt for a moment when the news broke that Lady Di had died. The “queen of people’s hearts” as she wanted to be known, died in a car accident in Paris. The tragic accident unleashed a media event the likes of which the world had never seen. It was estimated that about 2.5 billion viewers watched TV coverage. Three million people poured out into the streets of England during the funeral.

1996

Fully owned by the Reichle family

The transition from the founders’ generation to the next generation began. The Reichle family took over all shares from Renato De-Massari, who withdrew from operating business to take a seat on the Board of Directors. Output numbers increased thanks to success with exports. R&M decided to streamline production and developed the RJ45 Cat. 5 direct connectivity module and parallel to that a fully automatic production plant. The elimination of PCBs eliminated soldering and the heavy metal problem. The new Venus outdoor boxes protected the copper or fiber optic interfaces.

First successful attempt at cloning a mammal as Dolly the sheep made headlines. The contest of man versus machine was won by the chess computer Deep Blue. He beat the Russian Garry Kasparov in a chess match played under tournament conditions. The 15-year-old Swiss tennis player Martina Hingis became the youngest female ever to win Wimbledon and a year later the No. 1 player in the world.

1994

Registered office in Singapore

The establishment of Reichle & De-Massari Far East (Pte) Ltd in Singapore marked a crucial step. This subsidiary was put in charge of all business in Asia. By this year, about 50 specialists were working in product development to meet customer needs with new solutions and products. The RJ45 short module with PK93 and the shield connection 93 were launched on the market. R&M thus provided users with a significant optimization of the tool-free connection technique. The new R&M Duro module with polymer-protected contacts combined a weather-proof design with tool-free connection.

NATO intervened in the Bosnian War in former Yugoslavia. Nelson Mandela became the first black president of South Africa.

1993

Initial steps in Eastern Europe

R&M took its first steps into the Eastern Europe market with the founding of Reichle & De-Massari Polska Sp.z.o.o. in Warsaw. RJ45 became increasingly well-established as a new connector standard for generic cabling systems. R&M developed its first connection and distribution modules in keeping with this trend. Easy Lock, a tool-free connection technique, gained international attention as a result. A strain relief sleeve and the coding system known as Data Safe Lock ensured increased security and reliability. The development of a main distributor frame for optical fibers set new standards in terms of compactness and handling. The newly developed VS Standard distribution system supplemented the range with an export-oriented product. R&M became certified under ISO9001.

The transition from Czechoslovakia to the separate states of Slovakia and the Czech Republic went smoothly whereas violent struggles for sovereignty broke out in former Yugoslavia. The European Union (EU) became a reality. Bill Clinton was elected US president.

1990

New production and logistics building

The telecommunication market became increasingly deregulated. It was obvious that a small domestic market like Switzerland would be increasingly tight in the future. R&M decided to target further markets for business development. It had 140 employees at this time. A new production and logistics building was purchased in Wetzikon.

The Hubble space telescope was put into space by a space shuttle. Three students developed Archie, the first search machine. Inquiries to it still had to be made via Telnet.

1989

Already 140 employees

In just eight years, the workforce had grown from 24 to 140 employees. The enlarged business complex at Binzstrasse 31 in Wetzikon was finished and officially opened. In the same year, R&M purchased another property in Wetzikon.

The Soviet dominated East bloc collapsed. The Berlin Wall fell after having divided the city and Germany as a whole for 28 years. The World Wide Web (WWW) came into being at CERN in Geneva as part of a project.

1988

First fully automatic production plant

R&M founded a subsidiary in Italy, Reichle & De-Massari Italia S.r.l., now with registered office in Origgio. R&M put into operation the first fully automatic production plant for the manufacture of outlet inserts. The 19″ rack designed by R&M enabled seamless integration of active components in the distribution systems. The RJ45 standard became the international standard.

There were two pieces of good news: The Soviet Union withdrew from Afghanistan and the Gulf War between Iran and Iraq came to an end. Ayrton Senna became Formula 1 world champion.

1985

Rapid growth

The company quickly outgrew its facilities. A warehouse built just two years earlier was enlarged with the addition of two new stories. The VS83 Modular distribution system was introduced. The company hit the limits of its capacity. Different proprietary connectors and cables caused great confusion in the market. R&M recognized that integration in its own modular connection and distribution systems would be highly beneficial for users.

Mikhail Gorbachev became general secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union. Jean-Louis Michel and Robert Ballard found the wreck of the Titanic on a special expedition using the very latest equipment. Boris Becker won the tennis tournament at Wimbledon at age 17.

1982

Initial steps abroad

R&M founded its first subsidiary abroad. Reichle & De-Massari GmbH in Germany commenced operating business. Business continued flourishing. A new 1800m2 warehouse was planned.

England had a dispute with Argentina about a group of islands in South America, leading to the Falklands War. Helmut Kohl became German chancellor. The famous Commodore 64 computer was launched on the market. Italy became world soccer champion in Brazil.

1981

R&M moved to Wetzikon

The workforce had now grown to 24. R&M renovated a building at Binzstrasse 31 in Wetzikon for new offices and factory facilities and then moved in. First experience with foreign business involving a contract for a large plug-in patching distributor in Manchester.

The world was in an uproar. The Soviet Union was fighting the Afghanistan War and the US imposed massive sanctions on it as punishment. International terrorists were extremely active. Many assassinations and aircraft hijackings occurred. The Hungarian Erno Rubik invented the famous Rubik cube.

1974

The modular terminal worked

The oil crisis cast its shadows. A halt in construction and a loan decision delayed the building project in Wetzikon. The company moved into temporary quarters on Pündtstrasse in Uster. The modular 2-pin terminal featuring the self-lifting terminal plate with seesaw effect functioned after several tests.

Many European countries introduced car-free Sundays in response to the oil crisis. Richard Nixon resigned as US president because of Watergate. Germany became world soccer champion.

1968

The first employees

The registered office of the business was moved to Uster. The attic was renovated and offices were set up in it. The first two employees joined the original duo of founders to form a quartet. A year-end surprise occurred when the Directorate General of PTT sent an invitation to participate in a project competition for developing connector boxes with 40-pin connectors. The first T+T outlets were soon delivered.

Christiaan Barnard conducted the first successful heart transplant in South Africa. The United States carried out three manned space flights at a go with Apollo 6, 7 and 8.

1964

Founding of the company

The company was founded. The garages and homes of the Reichle family in Wetzikon and of the De-Massari family in Pfaffhausen served as offices, workshops and warehouses. The wives worked actively alongside their husbands. There was soon a dual cause for celebration: Swiss PTT, the national postal, telephone and telegraph authority, issued a license to R&M and the first order arrived.

Martin Luther King was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. The Beatles had five singles ranking No. 1 through No. 5 on the US Hit Parade. The global economy put in a great performance, growing at a robust 7.3%

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