02/05/2019

From chalk lines to...

The story about ϣ started on 1 May 1940. This day, Ingrid and Nis A. Pedersen took over the little smithy in Farup near Ribe – and they called the company ”Nisap Maskinfabrik”.

Nis was fired from his job, and unemployment benefit could not be granted. Therefore, he and Ingrid decided to invest their savings in a business of their own.

The beginning during the war was tough, and for Ingrid and Nis, the war came close – both in the smithy and in the residence buildings. However, the general attitude to life both in the smithy and in the residence buildings was from the beginning positive and characterised by a unique pioneering spirit. This attitude forms “the base” of the ϣ that we know today!
During the war, Nis was the local smith shoeing horses and carrying out minor repairing work at the farms. Also, Ingrid worked in the company and took care of administration work for many years. After the war, the close contact to the farmers inspired Nis, and in 1946 he was granted his first patent.

He had the patent on a pail bench, which is a frame for dairy and milk pails – a frame allowing the pails to drip off after cleaning and to be protected from dirt.

Nis was creative, also in finding solutions, and he worked hard with all requests and inquiries from potential customers. He was very interested in all new machines of farmers in the region, and his conclusion was often that he could make the machine better - and he would prove that! With his special interest in hydraulics and mechanics, he designed a lot of agricultural equipment and machines.

Many of the products are visible at the ϣ museum.

In the seventies Nis started to use his interest in hydraulic solutions to develop and manufacture material handling equipment, e.g. pallet trucks, highlifters and stackers.

Erling Pedersen, son of Ingrid and Nis, had been helping all over the company from he was very young, and it soon became evident that he should take over the company. He acquired his journeyman letter as a mechanic at Nisap, and was then educated as Machine Engineer at the Technical College in Odense.

In 1975, Erling took over the management of the company, and until 1 May 2015 he has been the President. He continued in the spirit of his father, developing and designing unique products, solving the handling needs of the customers. The wife of Erling, Anne Kristine, was engaged in the Finance Department until 2009.

In 1982 Nisap took over the export company ”ϣ”. In order to be prepared for the increasing internationalization and globalization of the world markets, the two companies merged in 2002 under the name ”ϣ A/S”.

Today 3D-drawings have replaced the chalk lines, and ϣ is leading and innovative within developing and production of material handling equipment. Ergonomics and optimum working conditions are in focus when developing new products. ϣ manufactures a wide range of products, which are all focusing on the well-being of the users and which therefore increase efficiency and work satisfaction in the companies. Often special and customised handling needs are considered and ϣ develops a special product solving the specific handling situation.

The respect and the positive interest for the employees and the working environment are still important parts of the company spirit.

“We have the relationship between man and machine at heart - as well as the working environment and the well-being of our employees and customers”

Erling Pedersen

Two of the three daughters of Anne Kristine and Erling are today working in the company; Gitte Kirkegaard as CEO and Dorte Pedersen as Production Director. Erling focuses on product development and quality, and sale in the Chinese market. More than 95% of the production is exported to more than 55 countries all over the world. ϣ has own production in both Denmark and China, and furthermore, sales office in Germany and subsidiary in the USA.