REMINGTON PRODUCTS COMPANY LLC, Bridgeport, Connecticut, USA
The origins of Remington Products Company LLC date back to the formation of E. Remington & Son, a firearms maker founded in 1816. E. Remington & Son made occasional forays, such as making sewing machines and farm implements--but it's most significant side venture was when inventor Christopher Sholes persuaded the firearms company to help him develop the typewriter with the "QWERTY" keyboard which is still the standard today. E. Remington & Son sold the typewriter company in 1886 which became Remington Typewriter Co. The gun company became Remington Arms Company, still a leading firearms maker.
Remington Typewriter Company merged with Rand Kardex Corporation in 1927 to become Remington Rand Inc. Remington Rand branched out into making adding machines, filing cabinets, punch card tabulating machines and other office equipment to become a leading office equipment company. Remington Rand began to make electric shavers in 1937 with the Remington model E. The company's most significant move was when it bought the pioneering Eckert-Mauchly Computer Company in 1950. Remington Rand delivered the first Univac computer to the United States Census Bureau the following year.
Remington Rand merged with Sperry Corp., developer of the automatic pilot, amongst other devices, in 1955. The combined company became Sperry Rand Corp. In 1979, Sperry Rand sold off its office machines business and Victor Kiam bought the electric shaver company in a leveraged buyout. This left Sperry Corporation, as the company became, with the computer company and related operations. Burroughs Corp., another computer company, bought Sperry in 1986. The merged company became Unisys Corporation.
Victor Kiam's Remington Products Company became very profitable, branching out into other personal care appliances, buying Clairol's personal care appliance business in 1994. Kiam sold controlling interest in Remington to Ike Perlmutter prior to the Clairol acquisition that same year. Remington changed hands again on June 1996 when Ike and Victor sold controlling interest in the company to Vestar Investment Group. Victor Kiam died in 2001. In 2003, the Kiam family and Vestar sold Remington to the battery company Rayovac. Remington Products Company LLC now makes and markets men's and women's electric shavers, hair clippers, beard and moustache trimmers, nose and ear hair trimmers, foot massagers, make-up mirrors, heated hair rollers, blow dryers and curling irons.
PHILIPS ELECTRONICS N.V. (Philishave/Norelco) Philips Domestic Appliances and Personal Care B.V., Groningen, The Netherlands
Philips was established in 1891 as a light bulb company in the Dutch town of Eindhoven by a young engineer, Gerard Philips. His brother Anton joined the company in 1895 to boost the company's international sales. The company expanded into other electrical and electronic products, introducing its electric shaver in 1939. Encouraged by American G.I.s returning home from World War II in Europe with Philishaves, North American Philips began marketing shavers under the Norelco name in the USA in 1948. Click here to read more about the Philips story.
BRAUN A.G, Kronberg, Germany
Max Braun founded his company in Germany in 1921 which originally made radio equipment. This appliance company began selling electric shavers in 1951 using a 1938 design. World War II greatly delayed this shaver's introduction. In 1967, it was purchased by The Gillette Company and is still a Gillette subsidiary. Click here to read more about Braun's history.
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