Andreas Stihl AG & Company KG (/stl/ (listen),[5] German: [ʃtiːl]) is a German manufacturer of chainsaws and other handheld power equipment including trimmers and blowers. Their headquarters are in Waiblingen, Baden-Württemberg, near Stuttgart, Germany. Stihl was founded in 1926 by Andreas Stihl, an important innovator in early chain saw production. Stihl claims to be the world's best-selling brand of chain saws, and the only chain saw manufacturer to make its own saw chains and guide bars.[6] Andreas Stihl AG is a privately held company owned by the descendants of Andreas Stihl. Stihl operates the Stihl Timbersports Series.

Andreas Stihl AG & Co.
Private Corporation
IndustryForestry equipment, Landscape maintenance
FounderAndreas Stihl
HeadquartersWaiblingen, Germany
Key people
Nikolas Stihl (chairman of Stihl Holding AG & Co. KG
Eva Stihl (vice chairperson)
ProductsIndustrial chainsaws, string trimmers, cultivators, cut-off saws, leaf blowers, construction tools, edgers, pole pruners, augers/drills & protective apparel
Revenue3.782 billion (2018)[1][2]
Number of employees
17,122 (2018)[3][4]

Company history

Andreas Stihl designed and hand built the first chainsaw in 1926. The saw was electrically powered, and weighed about 64 kg. The Stihl name soon became popular, and also became synonymous with professional grade chainsaws and soon became the number-one selling chainsaw company in the world, a title that the company retains to this day. Stihl growth was slow initially, as the chainsaws hit the market about the same time as the Great Depression; with manpower cheap, and old two-man saws proven, there was no need for power saws. The early saws were very heavy, and often needed two men to operate them. Some outfits had a wheeled generator which had a power cord to run to the electric saw. Stihl saws were used by the Wehrmacht, particularly in Eastern Europe and Russia, where timber was cut for defensive positions.

After the war, the availability of cheap, strong aluminum, better designs, and more powerful engines meant that the Stihl saw came into its own. The name of the saw that was proving itself was called the Stihl Lightning perhaps with a model designation of 07S. In the 1960s the "Old Man" John Schmidt, owner of Northern Seed & Tractor Company, just north of Pittsburgh, told my father Raymond Schmidt founder of Raymar Inc. in Morehead City NC, that he just ordered 40 new chainsaws. The previous year that company only sold four Clinton chainsaws. Having established a foot hold in America the reputation of dependability propelled Stihl to the top of the market. In 1971 Raymar Inc. opened in Morehead City, NC which was McCulloch (a yellow colored American made chainsaw) country. The area was pulp-wood industry oriented. It only took the sale of ONE Stihl Chainsaw for everyone else to want one also. Many improvements to design led the "chainsaw" to become a homeowner tool. Automatic chain oiling. anti-vibration handles, electronic ignition, chain brakes are some of them. Not only was the stronger aluminum a component but injected magnesium was used for even greater strength and lightweight. In the early 1970s there were few models of Stihl chainsaws available. With a model number related to cubic inches, rare for a German design. there was a standard & a heavy duty the 040 & 050 with super saws of 070 & 090. Improvements led to the 041 & 051 and with anti-vibration came the 041AV. A new style lighter weight saw was introduced the 030AV, the 031AV etc. The finest light-weight top handle saw ever produced before plastic was the 020AV . Its reputation among fire fighters and tree trimmers was so renown that demand for the saw continued even after mass-production ceased. Four employees would take all the parts and assemble them by hand averaging 10 saws per day. However they did command upwards of $600 while other small saws were selling for a third of that. The new style of the 031 was made into an 045 that out-cut the 051 so the 051 got a soup-up to an 075 about 110cc. The 045 was hopped up to an 056 with a Super a Magnum and a Magnum II before it was over. Also, there was an 08S 56cc which was a chainsaw but also a powerhead, remove bar & chain, that would power tools such as brush cutter, post hole digger, cut-off saw etc. The experience with injection molding was applied to a new material, plastic. The plastic injection system at the factory in Virginia Beach is run round the clock so the mold does not clog. Batches a plastic plugs are tested for quality before use with weather chamber that simulates hot & cold and saws are dropped from a height to see if bending or breakage occurs. The presses used for this operation are rate at 385 tons.[7]

During the 70s while building chainsaws, Stihl entered the weedtrimmer\brushcutter market contracting a Japanese company as their supplier for several years until Stihl had their own model to build themselves.


In the mid-1970s Stihl expanded the company by building manufacturing plants in Brazil and in the United States. Much of the increased demand came from the construction and landscaping markets. Along with the professional markets, Stihl designed a number of home-use equipment, like blowers, line trimmers, edgers, and chainsaws. In 2008, the newest Stihl production facility opened in Qingdao, China.[8] In December 2008, Stihl acquired the carburetor producer Zama to safeguard the supply and to enter a new business segment with growth potential.[9]

Stihl Incorporated

Incorporated in Delaware, Stihl Inc. is the US subsidiary of Stihl International GmbH and is based in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Construction of the facilities there began in 1974. Along with the manufacturing facilities, there are also warehouses and administration buildings at the 150-acre complex. Stihl Inc. employs almost 2,000 employees on 2 million square feet of buildings. Stihl International GmbH is a subsidiary of Andreas Stihl AG & Company KG.


  1. Facts and Figures about the STIHL Group
  2. STIHL_AnnualReport2018_EN.pdf
  3. Facts and Figures about the STIHL Group
  4. STIHL_AnnualReport2018_EN.pdf
  5. "Stihl USA FAQ". Retrieved 2018-03-12.
  6. "STIHL Corporate Culture" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-09-24. Retrieved 2015-05-06.
  7. personal experience in the industry
  8. "Shandong Provincial Government Delegation visited STIHL Qingdao". Archived from the original on 2012-04-26. Retrieved 2013-11-01.
  9. STIHL AG & Co. KG. "Stihl press release". Retrieved 24 October 2016.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.