Company History

Today AP&T is a firmly established, globally active manufacturer of sheet metal forming equipment and an important cooperation partner of many world-leading players in the car industry, for example. The success story began over 50 years ago with three small engineering companies out in the Swedish countryside.

1964–1989

The first 25 years

Tool manufacturer VIBAB is founded by Stig Gunnarsson and Jan Merlander in 1964 in Blidsberg, a small community outside Ulricehamn. The company is sold to Junga Verkstäder in 1974, and Tord and Jerker Andersson take over the business in 1980.

In 1964, Bertil Åberg founds Lagan Press in Lagan, which is located in Småland, and the company becomes one of the first in Sweden to manufacture hydraulic presses.

In 1970, Håkan Sallander and Bertil Jonsson, two employees at Lagan Press, decide to start manufacturing on their own and form Tranemo Hydraulmaskiner in Tranemo, which is located in Västergötland.

The three companies compete during the 1970s and 1980s, but they have each developed different strengths. Lagan Press specializes in deep drawing, Tranemo Hydraulmaskiner in presses with a larger press table and VIBAB in tooling and automation.

Karl-Inge Swahn in front of a press with 1000 metric tons of press force. It was so large it had to be built at the Landskrona dockyard. Karl-Inge eventually became service manager of AP&T in Sweden.

1989

AP&T formed

The businesses are merged in 1989, and AP&T is formed with the notion of offering customers complete production lines from one supplier with responsibility for the entire installation. The concept is named One Responsible Partner®, and it is still one of AP&T's most competitive advantages. The company’s goal from the start is to compete in the new international market.

1990s

International growth

In the 1990s, AP&T begins to modularize its products. Development and design are focused on producing a small number of base modules that can be combined into many different products. Modularization enables quicker product design and production. Ease of service also increases as does the possibility to upgrade and rebuild the products.

Demand for AP&T's solutions begins to grow rapidly, not least from household appliance and computer case manufacturers. Sales triple. The company founds its own sales and service companies in Germany, the USA and Denmark. NORDA, an Italian company, is acquired in 1991, and Talent AB, a Swedish company, is added in 1994. 

2000s

Leading knowledge partner in press hardening

AP&T experiences significant success in the 2000s as a supplier of forming equipment for heat exchanger plates and parts for roof drainage and ventilation. The truly major growth within press hardening takes place from mid-decade, however, when AP&T becomes a world-leading knowledge partner of the automotive industry. AP&T also continues to reinforce its international presence in the 2000s with companies in Great Britain, Japan, Poland and China. AP&T is acquired by Fairford Holdings in 2009.

2010s

50 years of success

AP&T's new facility in Ulricehamn was inaugurated in 2014, including headquarters, production and development. The same year marked the 50th anniversary of the first hydraulic presses and the start of tool manufacturing, which have now grown into a global corporation with focus on development of materials and methods for reducing weight and improving safety and energy efficiency. In 2015, AP&T supplied the first production line for hot forming of aluminum.

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