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    About us


    The court princely architect Joseph Hardtmuth laid down the foundations of the company in 1790, from which his descendants, especially his son Carl and grandson Franz, have created one of the world's largest companies in its field.

    A number of significant innovations in the field of writing instruments comes from the KOH-I-NOOR HARDTMUTH factory. For example, the production of graphite and clay pencil lead, patented as early as 1802, the principle of machine-made pencils or division of graphite pencils into individual grades 8B-10H, according to the hardness of the lead, which were soon taken over by other manufacturers as a global standard.

    KOH-I-NOOR HARDTMUTH also has several achievements. In 1900, the iconic yellow pencil 1500 won the prestigious award at Grand Prix in Paris and became the most famous pencil in the world.


    The factory in České Budějovice has been in operation since 1848, and it still ensures the largest volume of KOH-I-NOOR HARDTMUTH production. The whole company is also managed and organized from South Bohemian metropolis.

    With other factories in Městec Králové, Broumov, or Milevsko, most of the production can be described as Czech products. The exception is the division of markers produced in Bulgaria. The Czech customers can get the best products through a network of almost 100 own stores of the KOH-I-NOOR HARDTMUTH Trade subsidiary.

    You can also find arms of the parent company KOH-I-NOOR HARDTMUTH abroad, i.e. in Slovakia, Germany, Poland, Italy, Romania, and Bulgaria. Other important partners include the USA, Russia, Ukraine, and Benelux. The company exports its products to more than 90 countries.

    Czechs are also in the company's management. Although the company doesn't belong to the original owners of the Hardtmuth family anymore, KOH-I-NOOR HARDTMUTH continues to be a private company owned by the Bříza family with its general director Vlastislav Bříza Sr. leading it.

    KOH-I-NOOR HARDTMUTH formally belongs to the KOH-I-NOOR holding group, which besides the consumer industry, also covers the health, energy, automotive & engineering, HoReCa and real estate divisions.

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