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Rheinmetall AG

legal form Corporation
ISIN DE0007030009
founding April 13, 1889
Seat Dusseldorf , GermanyGermanyGermany 
Number of employees 25,767
sales 6.3 billion euros (2019)
Branch Mechanical engineering , defense industry , automotive supplier
Website www.rheinmetall.com
As of December 31, 2019

The Rheinmetall AG is a listed German weapons manufacturer and automotive supplier based in Dusseldorf .

The Rheinmetall Group at a glance

In the 2019 (2018) financial year, the company achieved sales of EUR 6.255 (6.148) billion with a total of 23,780 (22,899) employees. The 2017 (2016) financial year brought total sales of 5.896 (5.602) billion euros with 21,610 (20,993) employees worldwide (by capacity ). In 2017, Rheinmetall was the 25th largest defense company worldwide.

Automotive division

Rheinmetall Automotive (formerly KSPG, for Kolbenschmidt Pierburg Group ) is the lead company of the automotive technology division of the Rheinmetall Group. As an automotive supplier , Rheinmetall Automotive manufactures products in the areas of air supply, pollutant reduction and pumps and is active in the development, manufacture and supply of spare parts for pistons, engine blocks and plain bearings. In line with its strategic orientation, the company is divided into the three independently acting divisions Hardparts, Mechatronics and Aftermarket.

Rheinmetall Automotive breaks down its activities into seven business areas. Specifically, these are the business areas Kolbenschmidt (manufacture of pistons), large pistons (large pistons), Pierburg (components for air supply and pollutant reduction), Pierburg Pump Technology (coolant, oil, circulation and vacuum pumps), slide bearings (metal bearings and sliding elements as well as continuous cast elements ), aluminum technology (cylinder crankcase), motor service (sales for repair and maintenance for KSPG). In 2019 the turnover was 2.736 billion euros, in 2018 it was 2.930 billion euros.

Defense division

The Defense division of the Rheinmetall Group produces defense and armaments equipment. The core of the organizational structure consists of the three divisions Weapon and Ammunition (German: weapon and ammunition), Electronic Solutions (German: electronic solutions) and Vehicle Systems (German: vehicle systems). The subsidiaries and holdings of the armaments division Rheinmetalls are integrated into these three divisions.

Since the approval process for arms exports in Germany is fraught with great risks, because business depends on the goodwill of the respective government, Rheinmetall is also handling large deals, such as the one with Saudi Arabia, through subsidiaries. These are based z. B. in Italy (RWM Italia) or Austria (RWM Arges). Armaments that are produced in other countries are not subject to German arms export controls.

In 2019, armaments sales were EUR 3.522 billion and in 2018 it was EUR 3.221 billion.


Early gun of the Rheinische Metallwaaren- und Maschinenfabrik , known as the 75mm landing, colonial and mountain gun
Workers in the manufacture of a mine thrower developed by Karl Völler with precision tools at the moment when the detonator is to be screwed into the projectile. Sculptor Georg Busch

On April 13, 1889, the Hörder Bergwerks- und Hütten-Verein under General Director Josef Massenez founded the Rheinische Metallwaaren- und Maschinenfabrik Aktiengesellschaft to supply ammunition for the German Reich. The Thuringian engineer Heinrich Ehrhardt managed the construction of the Rheinmetall plant in Düsseldorf and managed it until 1920. Newly discovered sources in the Rheinmetall central archive and in other archives show that Heinrich Ehrhardt - contrary to what had long been assumed - was not involved in founding the company was involved. Heinrich Ehrhardt held the position of Chairman of the Supervisory Board at Rheinmetall until 1920. He also made many of his patents and inventions available to the company, thus making a significant contribution to the technical development of many Rheinmetall products.

The newly established plant in Düsseldorf-Derendorf on Ulmenstrasse began production in December 1889.

Early phase

The company expanded very quickly in the following years, which was not only due to government orders, but also to the patenting of two processes for the production of seamless tubes in 1891 and 1892. acquired Metallwerk Ehrhardt & Heye AG in Düsseldorf-Rath and incorporated it into the company as the Rath department in 1896.

In 1896, Rheinmetall presented the world's first rapid-fire gun suitable for field service, based on the patents of the engineer Konrad Hausser, with variable recoil and combined recoil and recoil device. However, this was rejected by the Prussian Artillery Examination Commission in ignorance of the possibilities. After the successful introduction of recoil guns by France ( Canon de 75 mle 1897 ) this attitude changed and the development became a great economic success for the company.

In 1899, a site near Unterlüß in the Lüneburg Heath was leased for testing weapons and ammunition . This location still exists today and now covers an area of ​​50 square kilometers.

On the initiative of Heinrich Ehrhardt, Rheinmetall took over the bankrupt Munitions- und Waffenfabrik AG in Sömmerda in 1901 . The company, founded as Dreyse 'sche Gewehrfabrik, manufactured handguns, cartridges and projectile fuses and thus expanded Rheinmetall's product range.

First World War and the interwar period

Rheinmetall administration building in Düsseldorf- Derendorf , architect: Richard Bauer , 1914

In the following years, Rheinmetall also grew due to orders from abroad. In 1906 the factory in Düsseldorf was therefore expanded. At the beginning of the First World War , Rheinmetall was one of the largest armaments manufacturers in the German Empire and employed almost 8,000 people. The technical director of the Rheinische Metallwaarenfabrik , Rheinmetall for short , was the engineer Karl Völler (1877–1916), who died in the middle of World War I while experimenting with new ammunition on the company's test site in Unterlüß on the Lüneburg Heath. By the end of the war, the workforce had grown to almost 48,000 workers and employees, including around 9,000 women. The built-up areas in the main plant quadrupled during this time.

Rheinmetall typewriter, around 1920

At the end of the war, arms production came to a standstill and Rheinmetall had to lay off numerous employees. The provisions of the Versailles Treaty made it necessary to switch to civilian products. Rheinmetall therefore produced locomotives, railway wagons, agricultural machinery and steam plows in the Rhineland. Precision mechanical devices such as typewriters and calculating machines were manufactured in the factory in Sömmerda. To ensure the production of civil goods, steel production in Rath was increased.

From 1921, the Allied regulations allowed the production of weapon systems in small numbers again. However, the factory in Derendorf was occupied in 1921 ( Allied occupation of the Rhineland ) and from 1923 to 1925 by Belgian and French troops ( occupation of the Ruhr ), and partly devastated. In the absence of orders, civil production had to be stopped except for the manufacture of steam plows. In a capital increase in 1925, the German Reich acquired a majority stake in Rheinmetall through its state holding company VIAG .

Share over 1000 RM in the Rheinische Metallwaaren- und Maschinenfabrik from December 1928; stamped on Rheinmetall-Borsig AG

In April 1933 Rheinmetall bought the locomotive manufacturer Borsig, which was about to be liquidated, and thus came into possession of a large factory in Berlin-Tegel . The merger in 1936 led to the renaming in Rheinmetall-Borsig AG. As part of the armament of the Wehrmacht , Rheinmetall-Borsig developed and produced weapons and ammunition from the mid-1930s on behalf of the Reich Ministry of War . The production palette ranged from machine guns and cannons to anti-tank guns, mine throwers and field cannons to anti-aircraft guns and railway guns . The subsidiary Alkett (Altmärkische Kettenwerke) was founded in Berlin in 1937 for the development and construction of armored tracked vehicles (see also: Montan scheme ). In 1938 the company relocated from Düsseldorf to Berlin.

Second World War

Output, destruction, relocation of production

Destroyed industrial hall in Düsseldorf-Derendorf

During the Second World War , arms production was increased to the maximum and the development of new weapon systems was demanded. The state influence through institutions of the Wehrmacht and the integration of Rheinmetall-Borsig into the state enterprise Reichswerke Hermann Göring increased until the company was completely nationalized and integrated into the planned war preparations. In the last two years of the war, the production facilities were severely damaged or destroyed by Allied air raids. After a heavy air raid on the works in Düsseldorf, numerous production areas were relocated to areas of the later GDR and today's Poland such as Guben , Apolda and Breslau . The plants in Berlin and Sömmerda also set up relocation operations, although the Sömmerda plant was spared air raids until the end of the war.

After the end of the war, most of the Rheinmetall-Borsig AG plant was destroyed. The factories in Düsseldorf, West Berlin and Unterlüß came under the control of the western allies and under trusteeship. All possessions in the areas occupied by the Red Army were expropriated. Some plants were completely dismantled by the victorious powers.

Employment of slave labor

During the Second World War, numerous forced laborers worked in the Rheinmetall factories. At the Unterlüß plant alone, around 5,000 foreign forced laborers and prisoners of war (around 2,500 Poles, 1,000 from the USSR, 500 Yugoslavs, 1,000 from other countries) were liberated by British troops at the end of the war. Hungarian Jewish women from a subcamp of the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp were also temporarily employed there.

Cold War

SLR camera EXA from VEB Rheinmetall Sömmerda

German Democratic Republic

In the GDR, the former Rheinmetall plant in Sömmerda was returned to the GDR on June 3, 1952 by the Soviet Control Commission . A state- owned company (VEB) was created. Office machines, moped motors for Simson SR1 , SR2 and Spatz as well as cameras were produced under the company name VEB Mechanik Büromaschinenwerk Rheinmetall Sömmerda . On May 5, 1958, the Sömmerda factory again became part of a large group of companies , the Association of Publicly Owned Enterprises (VVB) data processing and office machines in Erfurt. From this, the VEB Kombinat Zentronik arose on April 1, 1969, which was merged into the VEB Kombinat Robotron on January 1, 1978 . The production of moped motors and cameras was given up in the 1960s. The main products of the company now called VEB Robotron Büromaschinenwerk Sömmerda (BWS) were printers from 1967 and personal computers from 1981 ( PC 1715 , EC 1834 , EC1835 ). After monetary, economic and social union , the factory, which had around 12,000 employees at the time, was privatized under the trust agency as Robotron Büromaschinenwerk AG and liquidated on January 1, 1992.

Federal Republic of Germany

Production was completely banned until 1950. Thereafter, Rheinmetall-Borsig was converted into a pure holding company and two independent subsidiaries were founded. Borsig in Berlin manufactured steam boilers and refrigeration systems, while Rheinmetall in Düsseldorf built typewriters, shock absorbers, elevators, tannery machines and transport and loading equipment. This civil production in Düsseldorf is described by the company as not very successful today.

The upswing came in 1956. On June 23, Rheinmetall-Borsig was taken over by Röchlingsche Eisen- und Stahlwerke GmbH (now Saarstahl ) owned by the Federal Republic of Germany. In August Borsig was sold to Salzgitter AG . The holding company operated as Rheinmetall Berlin from November and the subsidiary in Düsseldorf operated as Rheinmetall GmbH from 1957. With the establishment of the Bundeswehr in 1956, a defense technology production program was launched again. Rheinmetall produced machine guns, machine cannons and ammunition. The first product was the MG1 .

The manufacture of heavy weapons, such as gun barrels and mounts, was resumed in 1964. It began with equipping tanks and artillery pieces. Rheinmetall developed a tank destroyer cannon, a standard tank turret and a tank howitzer. A year later, the development of the 120-millimeter smooth tube technology began .

To expand the ammunition range to include pyrotechnic products, a majority stake in NICO Pyrotechnik Hanns Jürgen Diederichs KG was acquired in 1970. In 1972, a temperature control test facility (TVA) was built on the test site in Unterlüß for the air-conditioning testing of weapons and equipment, but also civilian products. Series production of the FH 70 field howitzer (155 mm) began in 1978 . The first Leopard 2 battle tank was delivered to the Bundeswehr on October 24, 1979. It was equipped with the 120-millimeter smooth-barreled cannon developed by Rheinmetall . In the years that followed, the company's civilian business was reorganized and strengthened in 1981 through the purchase of a majority stake in Jagenberg and the acquisition of Gasti packaging machines and other companies.

In 1999 the packaging technology division was sold to IWKA Aktiengesellschaft, Karlsruhe, at the turn of the year. The companies A + F Automation + Fördertechnik GmbH, Kirchlengern, Benhil Gasti Verpackungsmaschinen GmbH, Neuss, as well as the French Erca Formseal SA, Les Ulis, and the American Autoprod Inc., Clearwater with a total of 822 employees belonged to this division.

In 1986 the automotive technology division was built up through the purchase of the carburetor manufacturer Pierburg GmbH. Together with Diehl Munitionssysteme , Rheinmetall founded the Society for Intelligent Effective Systems (GIWS). GIWS specialized in intelligent ammunition, projectiles and other defense systems. Due to the changed global political situation, Rheinmetall adapted its corporate strategy in 1989 to diversify into civil industrial products.


By acquiring a 60 percent stake in the Friedrich Krupp AG belonging MaK System Gesellschaft 1990 Rheinmetall extended its expertise in the field of new systems for land forces and special vehicles, such as for use in environmental protection. The company bought the remaining 40 percent in 1992 and thus became the sole shareholder. In the same year Rheinmetall delivered the first armored weapon carrier Wiesel to the Bundeswehr. The Düsseldorf-Derendorf location was also given up in 1992 and the production facilities were combined in the Unterlüß competence center. Development, sales and administration moved to a new building in Ratingen . With a stake in WNC-Nitrochemie GmbH in Aschau am Inn , the company increased its commitment in the field of ammunition production. In 1993, Rheinmetall expanded its civilian product range by acquiring Mauser Waldeck AG to develop the office systems division, the takeover of Heimann Systems GmbH to strengthen the security technology division, and the acquisition of the majority in the Preh works to expand the automotive division. Rheinmetall Industrie GmbH became Rheinmetall Industrie GmbH in 1994. In 1995, the group expanded its competencies in medium-caliber automatic cannon systems through a 60 percent stake in Mauser-Werke Oberndorf Waffensysteme GmbH and an increased commitment by Pierburg in the USA. Rheinmetall Industrie GmbH was converted into an AG in 1996. In the same year, the AG acquired a stake in STN Atlas Elektronik from the bankruptcy estate of Bremer Vulkan in order to strengthen its competencies in defense electronics .

In 1997 the company experienced a fundamental reorganization. After the acquisition of the communications technology company Richard Hirschmann GmbH & Co. , it was combined with Rheinmetall Elektronik, Preh and Heimann Systems under the management company Aditron to form the Industrial Electronics division. The weapon and ammunition division was transferred to the newly founded Rheinmetall W&M GmbH. The automotive technology division fell under the responsibility of the new KSPG , which was created after the merger of the newly acquired Kolbenschmidt with Pierburg.

In 1997, MaK Systemgesellschaft GmbH handed over the first serial copy of the Keiler mine clearance tank to the army . After the majority acquisition of STN Atlas Elektronik GmbH in 1998, the civil ship electronics was spun off and transferred to the newly founded STN Atlas Marine Electronics GmbH based in Hamburg. In the same year, the first device of the gun system newly developed by Rheinmetall and MaK Systemgesellschaft, the self-propelled howitzer 2000, was handed over to the Bundeswehr, and MaK Systemgesellschaft's Rhino mine clearer was used in the former Yugoslavia. Rheinmetall Industrie AG took over the defense technology of BUCK System GmbH and formed BUCK New Technologies GmbH.

In 1999, Rheinmetall brought its defense technology expertise together under the umbrella of the newly founded Rheinmetall DeTec AG (Defense Technologies) in terms of organization and corporate law. This was intended to prepare strategically for the necessary reorganization of the European arms industry through consolidation and cooperation. In the same year, the new company was strengthened by majority stakes in Oerlikon Contraves AG, a provider of combined cannon and guided missile systems for air defense, and Eurometaal Holding NV, a medium-caliber artillery manufacturer. At the end of the year, Rheinmetall DeTec AG took over the companies KUKA Wehrtechnik GmbH and Henschel Wehrtechnik GmbH. These two companies were merged with MaK Systemgesellschaft in 2000 to form the new company Rheinmetall Landsysteme GmbH.

From 2000

Branch in Kiel

In 2000, Rheinmetall's board of directors decided to adopt a clear strategy with a focus on the core competencies of defense technology, automotive technology and electronics. This was followed by the sale of Mauser Waldeck AG and Jagenberg Papier- und Verpackungstechnik in 2000. In 2002 Heimann Systems GmbH and the subsidiary Intergas belonging to Eurometaal Holding NV were sold and Eurometaal closed. In 2003 the remaining Jagenberg was sold and Preh was sold to Deutsche Beteiligungs AG . The concentration on defense technology skills was completed in 2004 with the sale of Hirschmann and Nico Feuerwerk and the division of STN Atlas Elektronik.

Two divisions: Automotive and Defense

In 2003, Rheinmetall Landsysteme delivered the first new Marder 1A5 armored personnel carriers . To develop the new Puma infantry fighting vehicle for the German armed forces , Rheinmetall Landsysteme and Krauss-Maffei Wegmann founded the joint venture PSM GmbH, in which both companies have a 50 percent stake.

In 2004 Röchling Industrieverwaltung sold its majority stake in Rheinmetall AG. The shares were taken over by around 75 institutional investors. In the defense technology division, Rheinmetall W&M GmbH was merged with Mauser-Werke Oberndorf Waffensysteme GmbH, Buck Neue Technologie GmbH and Pyrotechnik Silberhütte GmbH to form the new Rheinmetall weapon Munition GmbH. Together with Rafael Ltd. and Diehl Munitionssysteme GmbH, Rheinmetall Defense Electronics founds the joint venture EuroSpike GmbH, which acts as general contractor for the Spike missile family.

In 2005, Rheinmetall Landsysteme became a partner in the newly founded Army Repair Logistics (HIL). The company is responsible for the repair of selected vehicles and weapon systems of the German army for a period of eight years. The Public Security business area was opened in order to take account of the changed threat situation and to offer system solutions for defending against threats to internal security and civil protection .

In March 2008, Rheinmetall acquired the tank manufacturer Stork PWV from the Dutch conglomerate Stork . In this way, the Düsseldorf defense technology group took over the Dutch part of the production of boxer tanks, which is developed for the German armed forces and the Dutch army. This increases the participation in the boxer to 64 percent.

Rheinmetall and MAN founded the joint company Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles (RMMV) in May 2010 . This created a full-range supplier in the market for military wheeled vehicles that covers the full range of protected and unprotected transport, command and control vehicles for international armed forces. Rheinmetall holds 51 percent and MAN 49 percent of the company. In 2010 Rheinmetall initially acquired 51% of the German activities of Verseidag Ballistic Protection and increased its stake from 51 to 100 percent in January 2011; the company was renamed Rheinmetall Ballistic Protection in 2012. In February 2011, Rheinmetall increased its stake in ADS Society for Active Protection Systems in Lohmar to 74 percent, thus taking over the majority.

In July 2011, Rheinmetall reviewed the sustainability of the company's two-pillar strategy with the two areas of automotive technology and armaments. It should be made possible for both areas to further develop their competitive positions with greater flexibility. In this context, Rheinmetall examined in particular the possibility of an IPO for Kolbenschmidt Pierburg (KSPG), which represents the automotive technology sector in the Rheinmetall Group; however, the IPO was temporarily put on hold in September 2012. In 2012, KSPG took over the plain bearing activities of Kirloskar Oil Engines Ltd. (KOEL) in Pune (India). Among other things, KOEL is the largest manufacturer of plain bearings in India and focuses primarily on the domestic market there.

In January 2012, Rheinmetall and Cassidian bundled their activities in the field of unmanned flight systems and cargo loading systems as part of a joint venture. Cassidian holds 51 percent and Rheinmetall 49 percent of the shares in the newly founded Rheinmetall Airborne Systems GmbH.

With its new organizational structure introduced in February 2012, Rheinmetall's Defense division takes account of the company's planned growth and increasing internationalization. The Combat Systems , Electronic Solutions and Wheeled Vehicles division form the core of the new organizational structure at Rheinmetall Defense . The Automotive division also streamlined its organizational structure in May 2012. The previous six divisions of KSPG in the three divisions were Hardparts , Mechatronics and Motor Service bundled.

Criticism and criminal investigation

Banking and finance

In front of the headquarters of Rheinmetall AG, Düsseldorf on October 26, 2012 campaign "Outcry - Stop the arms trade"

The financing of arms exports also affects several German banks. The financing of arms production and exports is criticized. a. from Rheinmetall, through banks with their customers' money.

Individual controversial arms exports

The sale of Leopard tanks to Indonesia in 2013 was criticized by human rights organizations. Amnesty International armaments expert Mathias John said of Indonesia's 2012 wish to purchase Leopard 2 tanks and Marder armored personnel carriers : “An export (...) would send the wrong signal. In Indonesia we see continued human rights violations. ”The sale of 104 Leopard 2 tanks and 50 Marder 1A2 armored personnel carriers to Indonesia was approved in 2013.

The approval granted by the Federal Security Council in 2011 to export two hundred Leopard 2A7 + to Saudi Arabia was also the subject of public debate, including in the German Bundestag . Critics from various directions have their say at the annual general meeting, including the Association of Critical Shareholders , which, because of arms exports, applied at the 2012 shareholders' meeting not to exonerate the board of directors. In July 2013 it became known that the planned sale would most likely not take place due to massive criticism from the German public.

The public prosecutor's office in Bremen has been conducting an investigation since August 2013 against managers of Rheinmetall Defense Electronics and the electronics supplier Atlas Elektronik on suspicion of having paid nine million euros in bribes to Greek politicians and officials in order to boost the sale of submarine equipment to Greece. The company accepted a fine of more than 37 million euros imposed by the Bremen public prosecutor, and investigations against the company for bribery in the sale of the Leopard 2 to Greece were discontinued because the order volume was lower than in the Atlas case and Rheinmetall in the investigation had helped.

In August 2013, the Indian police investigated suspicion of bribery against two managers of the Swiss subsidiary RAD Rheinmetall Air Defense AG, who, according to a report in the Indian newspaper Indian Express , are said to have paid the equivalent of around EUR 400,000 to an Indian broker so that he could have his political contacts ensure that RAD is removed from the Government of India's blacklist. RAD denies the validity of the allegations. The background to this is that RAD, the Indian Army's main supplier of air defense until 2012, was blacklisted by the Indian government in 2012 because of an allegation of bribery disputed by RAD and thus excluded from all further orders from the Indian Army.

In October 2013, the human rights organization Bahrain Watch , the British Campaign Against Arms Trade and the South Korean trade union confederation Korean Confederation of Trade Unions launched a campaign against the delivery of tear gas to Bahrain , which the local police use to suppress demonstrations , with several deaths since 2011. According to research by Bahrain Watch , Bahrain obtains the tear gas from Rheinmetall Denel , a subsidiary of Rheinmetall Defense and the South African arms company Denel .

MK-80 series bombs were also used in the Saudi Arabia-led military intervention in Yemen. The discarded MK-83 were sold by the subsidiary RWM Italia SpA in the United Arab Emirates until 2012. MK-82 and MK-84, on the other hand, were assembled in the United Arab Emirates by the former subsidiary Burkan Munitions System (UAE) from components supplied by RWM Italia SpA.

In January 2015, it became known that several former employees of the company in Athens had to answer for bribery in court.

In 2016 and 2017, Rheinmetall plans to build a tank factory in Turkey became known. With signature campaigns and the demonstration with a tank in front of the Bundestag in April 2017, the Campact organization called on the Bundestag to prohibit Rheinmetall from doing business. In an ARD TV report at the beginning of 2018, Rheinmetall was accused of producing bombs for Saudi Arabia in Italy, Egypt and South Africa for use in Yemen and thus circumventing the arms export ban

International ethecon Black Planet Award 2017

In 2017, Armin Papperger (Chairman of the Management Board), Ulrich Grillo (Chairman of the Supervisory Board), Larry Fink (major shareholder) and Paul Manduca (Chairman of the Management Board PRUDENTIAL PLC) of the group were pilloried by the Ethecon Foundation with the international ethecon Black Planet Award 2017 . The reasoning states:

“You are trampling on environmental protection, peace and human rights. RHEINMETALL promotes war, ruins human rights and destroys the environment. Illegal arms deals, tax evasion and warmongering also show how those responsible at Rheinmetall disregard ethics and morals in order to maximize profits. Through their actions they accept the end of the earth as a black planet. "

Business areas

Vehicle systems

  • Rheinmetall Landsysteme GmbH

Armored tracked vehicles, support and mine clearance systems, NBC protection systems, tower systems, service

Weapons, ammunition

  • Rheinmetall weapon ammunition GmbH
  • Rheinmetall weapon ammunition Arges GmbH
  • Rheinmetall Chempro GmbH
  • American Rheinmetall Munitions Inc.
  • RWM Switzerland AG
  • Society for Intelligent Active Systems mbH

Weapons and ammunition for tank and artillery systems, medium caliber weapons and ammunition, protection systems


  • Nitrochemie AG ( Wimmis ; 55% Rheinmetall, 45% RUAG )

Propellant and powder as well as civil chemistry ( silanes , acid chlorides , epoxides , peroxides )

Air defense

Air defense systems , high-performance radars

Defense electronics

  • Rheinmetall Electronics GmbH
  • Rheinmetall Soldier Electronics GmbH (the former Oerlikon Germany)

Command and reconnaissance systems, C3I systems, fire control systems, drone systems

Simulation and training

  • Rheinmetall Defense Electronics GmbH (part of Atlas Elektronik , which joined Rheinmetall when Thyssen-Krupp was split off)

Land simulation, flight simulation, maritime / process simulation


  • The Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles GmbH in Munich is a joint venture with MAN Truck & Bus armored for the area and unarmored wheeled vehicles. Rheinmetall holds 51% of the company shares, MAN Truck & Bus 49%.
  • The Italian arms company RWM Italia with its production facility in Sardinia for the production of explosives is a subsidiary of Rheinmetall.
  • The South African company Rheinmetall Denel Munition is a joint venture between Rheinmetall and the South African defense group Denel .
  • Rheinmetall Technical Publications GmbH
    Rheinmetall Technical Publications GmbH (RTP) has been operating as an independent company in the Defense division of Rheinmetall AG since 2007, whereby it holds 100% of the RTP shares. The head office of the RTP is in Bremen, with seven further branches and offices in Germany. In addition, the RTP Group is represented internationally with the subsidiaries “Rheinmetall Technical Publications Schweiz AG”, “RTP-UK Ltd” and “Logistic Solutions Australasia Pty Ltd”.
    RTP's core business is technical documentation. This is created both civilly and militarily for air, marine and land vehicles. As part of the Logistic Support Services and ILS management, RTP coordinates logistical tasks and looks after the customers' systems along the entire product life cycle. In addition, RTP is approved as an aircraft technology company for development, manufacture and maintenance and guarantees the planning, manufacture, maintenance and availability of aircraft components for aircraft components.


Automotive division

Within the Automotive division , production takes place in three divisions under the Kolbenschmidt, Pierburg and Motorservice brands.

  • Mechatronics division
    • Pollution reduction
    • Actuators
    • Solenoid valves
    • Water, oil and vacuum pumps
  • Hardparts division
    • piston
    • Engine blocks and cylinder heads
    • Plain bearings and bushings
  • Aftermarket
    • Worldwide spare parts business

Defense division

Within the Defense sector , production is carried out in three divisions.

  • Weapon and Ammunition Division
    • Large and medium caliber weapons and ammunition
    • Protection systems
    • Propulsion systems and propellant powder
  • Electronic Solutions division
    • Air defense systems
    • Soldier systems
    • Command and reconnaissance systems
    • Fire control systems
    • Sensors
    • Simulation for army, air force, navy and civil applications
  • Vehicle Systems Division
    • Logistic wheeled vehicles
    • Tactical wheeled vehicles
    • Tracked armored vehicles
    • NBC protection systems
    • Tower systems


  • Christian Leitzbach: Rheinmetall: The attraction of building a large plant in the Rhineland. Greven Verlag, Cologne 2014, ISBN 978-3-7743-0641-7 (two volumes).
  • Jürgen Lang: Rheinmetall. An action-oriented strategy consideration. Grin Verlag, 2013, ISBN 978-3-6565-2685-8 .
  • Annegret Schüle: BWS Sömmerda. The checkered history of an industrial site in Thuringia 1816-1995. Dreyse & Collenbusch - Rheinmetall - office machine plant. Desotron Verlagsgesellschaft, 1995, ISBN 978-3-9803-9311-9 .
  • Fritz Pachtner: German mechanical engineering 1837–1937 as reflected in the Borsig plant. Elsner Verlag, 1937.
  • Gustav Müller: Rheinsche Metallwaren- und Maschinenfabrik Düsseldorf-Derendorf 1889–1914. Self-published, 1914.

Web links

Commons : Rheinmetall  - Collection of Images

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Rheinmetall Group - Executive Board .
  2. ^ Rheinmetall Group - Supervisory Board .
  3. a b c d Annual Report 2019 (PDF; 4.9 MB) Retrieved on March 23, 2020 .
  4. Sipri Ranking. ( Memento from December 6, 2012 in the web archive archive.today ) dw.com
  5. ^ Rheinmetall Automotive website
  6. ^ Rheinmetall Group .
  7. Angela Göpfert: Rheinmetall and the Saudi Connection. In: boerse.ARD.de. November 7, 2017. Retrieved November 8, 2017 .
  8. Annual Report 2018 (PDF; 4.9 MB) Accessed on May 2, 2019 .
  9. ^ Company website, history . Retrieved October 18, 2013.
  10. Rheinmetall AG, "Timeline for Company History / Rheinmetall W & M", official company website (historical version from May 2, 2005) ( Memento from May 2, 2005 in the Internet Archive )
  11. ^ Rainer Nolden: Düsseldorf-Derendorf. Sutton Verlag, Erfurt 2002, ISBN 978-3-89702-404-5 , pp. 52-55 ( online )
  12. Barbara Kasper, Lothar Schuster: Stranger Work - Forced Laborers at Rheinmetall-Borsig. Berlin 1983, documentary film.
  13. A. Schüle: BWS Sömmerda: The checkered history of an industrial site in Thuringia 1816-1995 . Desotron Verlagsgesellschaft, Erfurt 1995, ISBN 3-9803931-1-9 , p. 274 .
  14. Rheinmetall streamlines its portfolio (ad hoc) . aktiencheck.de.
  15. Rheinmetall Group - History: 2000–2010 .
  16. Rheinmetall Group - History: 2011–2015 .
  17. KSPG AG press release . Archived from the original on July 1, 2014.
  18. Rheinmetall Group - Rheinmetall and CASSIDIAN bundle their activities in the field of unmanned flight systems .
  19. KSPG AG press release . Archived from the original on July 1, 2014.
  20. Leila van Rinsum: Banks and the armaments industry: a surefire deal. taz.de, accessed on April 13, 2017 .
  21. Indonesia wants leopard tanks. November 17, 2012, accessed January 9, 2013 .
  22. ^ Controversial armaments deal: Berlin approves sale of 164 tanks to Indonesia. Spiegel.de , May 7, 2013.
  23. Arms deal: Germany wants to deliver battle tanks to Saudi Arabia. In: Spiegel Online . July 2, 2011, accessed January 9, 2013 .
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