About the foundation
- Made for the future – Stibo is a more than 200 year old company, and decades ago, the owners (at that time a family) chose to secure the future of the company. For the Kiær family, the company was more important than anything else. Erik Kiær is remembered in history for being an extremely diligent and visionary owner and manager. He took over the position from his father back in 1949. He saw that the printing industry was facing big changes and was convinced that innovation was the key to future development and growth. Thus, Erik Kiær and his wife transferred all their shares to a foundation with a long-term perspective.
- A long-term solution – the family wanted a solution for the future in which there were no shareholders to prioritize. The Articles of the charter from 1966 state that profit will be re-invested in order to create the best framework for long-term development. It was also stated that the company should be operated in such way that it “maintains the highest possible respect with the highest achievable technical standard”. Today, the foundation owns the Stibo group. In addition, the foundation has, through the years, sponsored science and culture.
- The Danish model – LEGO, Carlsberg and Stibo are all well-known worldwide for their respective services and products. These three companies have in common their form of ownership – an ownership form which is common in Denmark and which has formed a solid base for developing these companies into the international players that they all are today. In Denmark, the foundation-owned companies account for 20 pct. of the total business volume in Denmark, ensure 300,000 people a good job and have a better return on equity than the listed companies.
- No exit strategy – there is a Danish saying that you do not become a leader by following other people’s footsteps. Stibo has always taken the lead – in cooperation with its customers – and has left permanent footprints. It has been that way for more than 200 years and there will be no changes to the form of ownership. The foundation adheres to the aim of owning and developing the business of the future. Through the years, the customers have discovered new needs and have chosen Stibo to create the solutions. An ownership structure with such a long-term perspective and ‘patient money’ enables Stibo to concentrate on the needs of its customers and to deliver the right solutions. This makes good sense – both for the customers and for our business. Also in the next 200 years.