Spices, fruits, coffee, tea: When Christoph Seeberger of Ulm founded his colonial goods store in 1844, the exotic tastes of foreign lands came by sea, along the Danube or over land to Ulm’s Pfluggasse. While Ulm’s master builders were erecting one of the largest church towers in the world on Ulm Minster in the heart of the bustling and global trading city, Christoph Seeberger was laying the foundation for a family company that has enjoyed success for generations.
Three Seeberger generations. Take a short trip through time with us from 1844, the year we were founded, to the present day.
FOUNDING YEARS 19TH CENTURY
With the founding of his colonial goods store in 1844 in Ulm, merchant Christoph Seeberger brought exotic fare such as spices, fruits, coffee and tea to the Danube. Seeberger the family company was born. Coffee was enjoying a real boom in the mid-19th century thanks to affordable prices, even finding its way into the kitchens and cups of the less well-off. Seeberger’s son Friedrich saw this opportunity and, from then on, roasted Seeberger coffee for more and more connoisseurs in the best spot on Ulm’s main square, Marktplatz.
NEW GENERATION 20TH CENTURY
The by now well-established company survives two world wars and their dramatic consequences for the food business and supplying people. In 1952, now under the leadership of Julius Rohm Snr, Seeberger is focussing on its core business: the import of high-quality coffees, dried fruits and nuts – specialities from all over the world. Expansion and investments in new technologies establish the road to success. Julius Rohm Snr sees the opportunity in the up-and-coming self-service stores – food had previously only been sold “over the counter”: he packs the sensitive fruits and nuts for optimal protection, creating a new product group in the business in doing so. In 1985 he hands over to his son: Dr Julius Rohm takes charge of purchasing and operations from then on.
SEEBERGER IN THE 2000s
Shortly after the start of the new millennium, Clemens Keller, nephew of Dr Julius Rohm, takes on overall operational responsibility for the company. Purchasing and operations fall within his remit. He takes a similarly long-term approach to his predecessors and initiates expansion. A high-bay warehouse with almost 25,000 pallet spaces was added in 2013 to increase storage area. This connects to the existing building and production via an impressive bridge.