In the middle of the 19th century the first rails also approached
Magdeburg and steam boats cruised the river Elbe. The sugar refineries
of the fertile Magdeburger Borde region as well as other industrial
plants were increasingly changed over to steam power.
Around this time the inventor of the flat-spring manometer (1849),
Bernhard Schaffer, founded together with Christian Budenberg the first
European factory for the industrial production of fittings in Magdeburg
Already around the turn of the century "Schaffer & Budenberg"
employed approximately 2.300 workers.
Further fitting producing companies like "Strube" (1864) and "Polte"
(1885) - to name just a few - were founded in Magdeburg.
The development of these three companies was - like the whole economy -
thrown back for years by World War I. Nevertheless all three survived
and specialised in certain types of fittings during the following
"Schaffer & Budenberg" concentrated - aside from its vast
program range - on high-pressure hot steam applications. "Polte"
attended to fire extinguishing systems, fittings for drinking water
installations and large fittings. "Strube" specialised in security
valves as well as locomotive and vessel fittings.
Despite of being heavily destroyed the companies took up production
after World War II. However they were soon united into "Magdeburger
Armaturen- und Messgeratefabrik". From this company the "Magdeburger
Armaturenwerke MAW" which employed 7.000 workers and became the main
plant of the GDR fitting combination which was founded in 1970 and
employed 18.000 workers in total.
After the German re-unification the DEUTSCHE BABCOCK AG took over the
main plant in Magdeburg as MAW AG and later as MAW GmbH.
MAGWEN Valves GmbH has taken over essential product areas from MAW GmbH
including the entire know-how, a skilled work force and all legal
pre-requisites and is now continuing the tradition of fitting
production in Magdeburg on the highest technical level.