A history of 110 years is worth telling and celebrating. CIFIAL has become a reference in Portuguese industry as a result of its ability to adapt to market requirements , anticipating trends and keeping in the forefront of technology. The high quality of standards has made CIFIAL a brand internationally recognized , based on the "art of know-how" accumulated over more than a century.
In 1904 Centro Industrial de Ferragens, Lda was found by Alberto Costa Reis “O Biscatão”. At that time the factory produced latches, locks, hinges, safes and a number of metal handcrafted products using basic tooling.
The period leading up to World War II created financial issues for the company. CIF went into bankruptcy and became the property of "Banco Borges & Irmão". In 1944, José Marques acquires the company from this financial institution. He was a son of a carpenter, whose economic difficulties did not allow him to complete primary school. His father gave him the work ethic, discipline and honesty, which made him a successful Biscatão employee in 1920-1922 as a professional lathe operator.
With great wit, a remarkable spirit of sacrifice, a strong ability to work and an unusual acumen, José Marques was expanding the factory. He began modernizing it, creating the conditions for the development and leading the way for future internationalization. A new stage of modernization was in progress, and the first step of automating the company had begun.
In the post war government, major difficulties were endured. Recent investment in equipment installed in a climate of political and economic instability, and a loss of former African colonies marked a decrease in the domestic market and an increase of political and social instability. The expansion into new markets was mandatory. When entering the US market expectations were confirmed, a greater ability to pursue a higher quality and more advanced markets.
Production was increased to positively
impress the new American client.
Development of a lock with innovative
features would be a long-term commitment to this customer.
A new US customer with strong relationships was created in the market.
The company began to launch additional products which continued the success in the US market. The high quality level of Cifial products created the production of new endeavours. Production advanced into the bath market for “Broadway
Collection” as an integrated offering.
These years offered additional products in new areas of business.
In 1991, Cifitrónica was the result of
CIFIAL’s ability to enter into a new
generation of electronics and access
control systems from its strong tradition of manufacturing mechanical safety locks.
A year later the expansion of a new business area - Original Equipment Manufacturer - supported by partnerships in the US was established.
A complete melting/casting facility, enhanced with new robots sanding and polishing was completed. Following this advancement the Group takes a stake in Aquatis Sanitaryware, thus becoming a fully suited supplier for bathroom solutions. It was a decade of geographical growth, with the appearance of subsidiaries in the United Kingdom, United States of America and Spain. This strengthened the distribution channels in high potential markets. In 1997 occurs the acquisition of OLIVA brand and LUSEPI.
This strategy was to increase our position as a leader in the domestic market, adding solutions and designs to the portfolio. At the end of the decade, CIFIAL group created a new organization with a holding company named CIFIAL SGPS.
In 2000 occurs the opening of Cifial Torneiras, SA, which flows from the incorporation of the unit brands Cifial with Oliva and Lusepi. An investment is made with the acquisition of the entire share capital of Aquatis, which would later be renamed, Cifial Indústria Cerâmica, SA. This decade is carried out an extensive restructuring of the business, accompanied by a change in the corporative image, identifying each area of activity: Complete Bath Solutions and Integrated Door Systems.
It was also the era of international recognition via the Design. In addition to numerous awards for product design, the company won the DME Award by the use of design as a strategic management tool.
Year of the financial restructuring process, FR - Capital Venture Fund SA acquires a position of 90% of the capital of CIFIAL SGPS, SA, endowing it with ability and financial strength.
CIFIAL’s history is rich with moments and accomplishments which make the company proud. On CIFIAL's 110th year aniversary, the company has accomplished many activities in order to show to customers, suppliers and other entities that CIFIAL is ready to face the future.
Cifial is ready for another 110 years