Go directly to
      The Future Needs a Past
      Press Release
      April 05, 2016

      Continental Reviving Its History and Tradition

      • Professor Paul Erker from Munich commissioned to carry out a study and publication on the company's history
      • Company archives are being expanded and modernized
      • Focus on 150-year anniversary

      Hanover, April 5, 2016. Technology company Continental wants to revive its history and tradition – and thus reopen the discussion about them. Professor Paul Erker from Munich was tasked at the start of the year to conduct a relevant historical study. The key findings of his work are set to be published in 2021 to coincide with the company's 150-year anniversary. Another aspect of his mission involves assisting with expanding and modernizing the company archives. Using digitized documents and materials, it is hoped the archives will be made more accessible for research and scholarship than they are now by the anniversary year. The company will be spending over one million euros on the entire history project over the next five years.

      ​​​​​"As a company that is 145 years old, Continental has lived through a number of changes and has shaped many of them itself. History teaches us that only companies with deeply rooted origins and values can confidently shape their future successfully," declared Dr. Elmar Degenhart, chairman of the Continental Executive Board, at the start of the project. He went on to say: "Our company has been growing at a faster rate than the market for many years. It unites over 100 different corporate cultures of companies that in past decades have come together under the Continental roof in a number of different ways. Looking back over our company history and reanimating it in the present day is intended to strengthen both our confidence and our sense of responsibility."

      Professed expert and renowned historian

      Professor Erker teaches Business History at Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich and is one of the most renowned experts in this field. He has many years of experience both of the automotive supplier industry and of Continental. Twenty years ago, he published a research paper on the Hanover-based company (book title: "Wachsen im Wettbewerb. Eine Zeitgeschichte der Continental AG" – Competition and Growth: A Contemporary History of Continental AG, Dusseldorf, 1996).

      "For me, the current task is simply a continuation of the work I started back then. This time, instead of a traditional company history, my work will combine key documents with interviews of contemporary witnesses and topical analyses. This explicitly includes an in-depth study into the history of Continental and its subsidiaries during the National Socialist era," he said, adding: "It is therefore not another linear success story that we see so often. It places greater emphasis on examining the significance of detours, knockbacks, crises, and ruptures as starting points for the company's future path to success. With this concept, Continental is certainly breaking innovative ground in the presentation of its company history."

      This is intended to make Continental's development new, interesting, and vivid for both professionals and a wider audience, too. Continental is therefore guaranteeing Professor Erker academic independence as well as unrestricted access to its files. As part of the historical review, Continental is also linking together its growing company archives at a number of locations. Continental wants to use the transparency this will create to specifically deepen and intensify its communications on the history of the company.


      Available documents

      Cookie Policy

      We use cookies to provide you with the best experience on our website. Click on "Accept all" to allow all cookies or "Change cookie settings" to decide individually.

      Note: If you consent to the use of performance cookies, you also consent to the transfer of your personal data to insecure third countries (e.g. to the USA). These insecure third countries do not provide a level of data protection comparable to EU standards. In the case of certain third party providers, such as Google and Mouseflow, no other guarantees are offered to compensate for this deficit. There is therefore a risk that the transmission of your personal data may result in state authorities accessing your personal data without you having effective legal protection options.

      For more information on performance technologies and the transfer of data to third countries, please refer to the privacy policy.

      By clicking the "Accept all" button, you explicitly consent to this. Consent can be revoked at any time by changing the cookie settings. The further processing of data already collected before revocation by the third-party provider cannot be excluded.

      A cookie is a small data file that is stored on your device. We use cookies to provide basic and convenience functionalities, measure website performance and analyze user behavior on the website. 

      Required cookies are always activated because they are indispensable for the operation of the website and to store your cookie consent. Functional and performance cookies are optional. All optional cookies are deactivated by default.

      You can change your cookie settings at any time by visiting our Cookie Policy or by clearing the cache in your browser. 

      Show more Show less
      Required cookies Required

      These cookies are required to provide you with key functions.

      Functional cookies

      These cookies are used to provide certain functionalities to you.

      Performance cookies

      These cookies are used to measure website performance and user behavior. All collected data are analyzed anonymously.