“Discover the story of how a small filter reseller became a world leader in separation and filtration technology.“
The beginning of a story
Passionate about cars and with a background in heavy goods vehicle mechanics, Pierre HIRSCHI was only 19 years old when he realised that there was a lack of a reference in filtration for professionals. Relying on his father’s experience in the distribution of spare parts, and with the help of his wife Martine, he created P.HIRSCHI FILTRES (which became HIFI FILTER SA in 2019) in Savagnier, Switzerland, on 1 August 1977. In the attic of a small garage, he stored his first boxes of filters, ready to go in search of his future customers.
On the road…
ON THE ROAD…
Equipped with a first van that was colourful to say the least, Pierre HIRSCHI criss-crossed the roads of French-speaking Switzerland to seek out and deliver to his first customers, anxious to offer an irreproachable service and above all to become a trusted partner for their filter needs.
The first participation in the Geneva Truck Show is a real turning point for the company. Visitors flocked to the stand, enthusiastic about the concept but above all aware of the added value that this partner could have in their daily lives. The success is such that the company’s reputation and sales increase significantly afterwards.
Creation of the first building
CREATION OF THE FIRST BUILDING
Faced with the influx of requests from all over Switzerland, the Savagnier warehouse quickly became too small. The construction of a new building in Cernier provided a much larger storage area, adapted to the ambition and growth of the company. Several expansions were carried out over the years to increase the area from 800m² in 1983 to over 5,000m² today.
Establishment in France
ESTABLISHMENT IN FRANCE
In just over 10 years, P.HIRSCHI FILTERS has established itself firmly in the Swiss market. France offers new perspectives, especially for a European opening. On 1 October 1989, JURA FILTRATION (which became HIFI FILTER France in 2020) was founded in Villers-le-Lac, a small town on the Swiss border. Next door to the local pharmacy, and despite a limited surface area of 130 m², the French subsidiary grew at a dizzying pace. It moved to Houtaud 2 years later in a building offering, after various extensions, more than 4000 m² of storage space.
With a strong commitment to quality customer service, the Group designs several tools to make users’ daily lives easier. The first catalogues of applications and matches were published. At a time when the Internet did not yet exist, they enabled customers to find the filters they needed quickly and easily. A small revolution in the field of filtration.
Birth of the HIFI FILTER® brand
BIRTH OF THE HIFI FILTER® BRAND
Wishing to assert itself in the world of filtration and faced with increasingly strong competition, the Group decided to create its own brand. HIFI FILTER® was registered in 1996 and over the years has become a recognised brand, renowned for the depth of its range and the quality of its products.
A new site for the French subsidiary
A NEW SITE FOR THE FRENCH SUBSIDIARY
The French subsidiary moves to a new site in Pontarlier. Various expansions allow for a considerable increase in storage capacity and thus the development of new markets in France and worldwide.
Establishment in Romania
ESTABLISHMENT IN ROMANIA
Romania, which has just joined the European Union, is home to the Group’s third subsidiary. HIFI FILTER ROM opens in 2007 in Bucharest. A wonderful way to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Group.
Establishment in Poland
ESTABLISHMENT IN POLAND
HIFI FILTER POLSKA opens its doors near Warsaw. With more than 6,000 m² of storage space, the Polish subsidiary quickly became a driving force for the Group and a launch pad for many Eastern European
Establishment in Spain
ESTABLISHMENT IN SPAIN
In order to meet the growing demand of the Spanish market, the Group set up in Madrid under the name of HIFI FILTER IBERIA and thus offers greater proximity and reactivity to customers in the Iberian Peninsula.
In 40 years, HIFI FILTER® has become one of the main players in filtration and separation in Europe and worldwide. Driven by the passion of the Hirschi family and supported by committed and professional people, the Group’s rise is the reward for a great family and entrepreneurial adventure.
In 2017, HIFI FILTER® is present in 5 European countries, with 400 employees, 35,000 m² of storage space and a range of over 60,000 products.
Establishment in Zurich
ESTABLISHMENT IN ZURICH
A new office is set up in Zurich with the aim of providing technical and commercial support to customers in German-speaking Switzerland.
Opening of the Logistic Center
OPENING OF THE LOGISTIC CENTER
In addition to the Pontarlier site, HIFI FILTER FRANCE is building a new logistics centre to increase its storage capacity and serve its customers throughout the world ever more rapidly.
Establishment in Catalonia
ESTABLISHMENT IN CATALONIA
In order to strengthen its presence in Spain, HIFI FILTER IBERIA has opened a new branch office. Located in Barcelona, it offers a local service to Catalan customers.
First steps in manufacturing
FIRST STEPS IN MANUFACTURING
HIFI FILTER® opens its first production unit in Tunis, Tunisia. Producing quality air filters, H-FACTORY is intended to offer greater flexibility and responsiveness to the Group’s subsidiaries and their customers.
Establishment in the UK
ESTABLISHMENT IN THE UK
With the aim of establishing a long-term presence in the United Kingdom, the Group acquires the company Sterling Filtration, which becomes HIFI FILTER UK. Based near Birmingham, the British subsidiary is also a response to the issues and problems generated by the Brexit.
“Today, HIFI FILTER is one of the best known filter brands in the world. A family business since our creation and with 500 employees, we continue to pursue our goal of improving the daily lives of more than 30,000 professionals who trust us. Thanks to you, our history continues to be written and reinvented every day.“