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50 Years Howal GmbH

Howal staircase formwork 1969 and 2018

50 Years Howal GmbH

Howal GmbH was founded in 1969 by Hansjörg Holzapfel and Hermann Walka with the company name of Holzapfel + Walka. The company’s ethos was and still remains the optimisation of precast concrete component production by developing technically sophisticated, high-quality formwork systems. The young firm very rapidly gained a good reputation in the precast industry on account of its new designs, such as formwork for adjustable staircases or columns. 

In 1972, the company moved to Ettlingenweier, where its headquarters are still located. Other formwork systems, including special formwork, were developed and implemented in the following years. Of particular note is the staircase formwork for spiral stairs that allows great diversity within a formwork system. The hydraulic formwork for columns and beams are also often found in precast production facilities due to their universal applicability and ease of operation. With the departure of Hermann Walka in 1983, Hansjörg Holzapfel became the sole director and shareholder.
The company was renamed Howal GmbH in 1988 on the occasion of the move to its new headquarters. Dr-Ing. Hubert Holzapfel – of the 2nd generation – joined the firm in 1995; the handover of the business management took place in 2001. This has ensured that the company’s culture – innovative but at the same time caring for others – is preserved on an ongoing basis.

Alongside continuous new and advanced developments in all its formwork systems, one other clear emphasis has been on gaining new markets. Howal GmbH’s successful appearances at the bauma trade fair in Munich are a testimony to this. It has also been a substantial driving factor in the company’s internationalisation over the last few years. The formwork systems are manufactured in Karlsruhe and Baden-Baden at the sites of qualified production partners, with whom Howal has been working for decades. 

Customer orientation is a corporate value for Howal

Howal has concentrated unrelentingly on advancing the development of its formwork systems for more than 50 years now. Right from the outset, its interest has been centred on the special requirements of customers.
How can a system be designed more flexibly? How can its operation be simplified? How can the quality of precast components manufactured using Howal systems be improved? The company’s daily incentive is to find answers and solutions for such questions.
Customer orientation is thus a corporate value, which came about as a natural consequence of the firm’s history. It is not just customers who are held in esteem; the appreciation also applies, in particular, to long-serving employees whose great commitment has made the success of Howal GmbH possible.
Howal has worked confidentially with customers for decades and has been appreciated as a serious business partner by many family-run businesses for generations. For Howal, itself a family-run business, absolute reliability is the basis of working together.

Exceptional projects in the last few years

Howal has been again and again involved in interesting projects and has made a lasting impression on its customers throughout the world with its attention to detail and the high quality of the formwork produced. For example, Howal supplied the formwork for the stadium steps, stepped beams, columns and all stairways for the biggest football stadium in Nigeria. The company is also very active in Russia, where it just recently supplied more than 200 m of column formwork to a Russian customer. Of particular note is the delivery of the first centrally adjustable staircase formwork to Japan in cooperation with a well-known Japanese trading house. Here, the objective is to establish a presence on this country’s market.
Customised formwork is a one Howal’s special domains. Howal has equipped many production facilities with angled element formwork that is greatly appreciated by customers.

Howal GmbH
Am Reutgraben 4
76275 Ettlingen, Germany
T +49 7243 949730
F +49 7243 90645
einfo@howal.com www.howal.com


CPi worldwide journals are trade journals for the concrete and precast concrete industry that are published in 12 different language editions in more than 170 countries. These trade journals, with their practical editorial reporting on research, production and applications, are specifically addressing the decision makers of the concrete and precast concrete industry.

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