Miele has an incredible 120-year history of Immer Besser – Forever Better. To celebrate this milestone, we take a deep dive into some of our most memorable moments over the years.
The beginning (1899 – 1914)
Beginning in 1899, Miele was shaped by two German families, the Miele and Zinkann families, who originally launched Miele & Cie, a cream separating company. Initially located in an old saw and corn mill in the community of Herzebrock, Miele & Cie had just eleven employees.
It was in 1901 that our very first washing machine was designed, marking a pivotal moment in the second industrial revolution. Featuring a lid-mounted agitator, it was an incredible advancement in home appliances.
Unbeknown to most, we haven’t always developed home appliances. Forever at the forefront of innovation, in the early years we also produced a whole range of other products and automotives, including a motorbike, bicycle, milking machine and car. The Miele car was developed between 1912 and 1914 and sold for around 5,100-7,900 marks, a currency previously in place before the euro was introduced.
Creating an iconic name (1915 – 1950)
Our products have always been built to the highest quality and durability, designed to last over many generations. Our iconic logo has featured across our advertising campaigns throughout history to promote all of our innovative appliances, including our washing machines, our first vacuum cleaner in 1927 and Europe’s first electrically driven domestic dishwasher in 1929.
An influx of innovative appliances (1950 – 1980)
The fifties were iconic for the humble washing machine, which shifted from the outhouse or basement and became a staple within the home. Taking on a more elegant and decorative form, the washing machine entered into the rectangular shape that we are familiar with today.
Miele’s kitchen range changed dramatically in the seventies, with a new generation of built-in appliances entering the market that were designed to perfectly complement surrounding kitchen cabinetry.
Bringing home appliances into the 21st century (1990 – 2000)
With technology advancing quickly, we opened our first fully automatic distribution centre in our home of Gutersloh in 1993, allowing for a new link in the supply chain and a computer operated storage system for around 100,000 domestic appliances.
We also created a completely new appliance category, launching the world’s first ever built-in coffee machine in 1998.
Fast forward to the 21st century and our washing machine celebrates its 100th birthday and revolutionises laundry care with a world premiere in the patented Miele honeycomb drum. Our technology begins to rapidly advance as we introduce a new generation of washer extractors and tumble dryers with freely programmable controls.
2010 and beyond!
At the heart of all of our activity continues to be our Immer Besser brand promise which will continue to grow in the next 120 years. We are proud of our history and our consistent drive to remain the world’s leading manufacturer of premium domestic appliances including cooking, refrigeration, coffee machines, dishwashers, laundry, floor care and a range of washer-disinfectors and sterilisers for commercial use (Miele Professional). Miele’s guiding principle, ‘Immer Besser’ aims to set a standard of ‘forever better’ products that are durable, sustainable and high performing with a stylish finish.
Click here to watch a video to learn more about Miele’s 120 years of innovation!