Remembering the 150th birthday of Heinrich Dreyer

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25th March, 2012 was the 150th anniversary of the birth of Heinrich Dreyer, founder of Amazonen-Werke. As the son of the wheelwright, Johann Caspar Dreyer, who owned a craft business of long tradition, Heinrich was trained by his father in his workshop and was made familiar with the development of agricultural machinery, above all with winnowers. There was no possibility of a higher education and much less for study because Heinrich’s father died in his early years. 

So Heinrich Dreyer had to take over the workshop from that early age and soon founded, in the year 1883, a factory for series production of agricultural machinery and agricultural implements.  

Heinrich Dreyer was an exceptional entrepreneur who, despite his simple education, quickly became a true all-rounder. On the one hand, he was a successful designer and so, in the beginning, developed a grain cleaning machine – also called a wind separator or winnower – which was highly praised and awarded a multitude of first prizes at many exhibitions. On the other hand, Heinrich turned out to be an efficient business man who was able to establish a strong sales rapport with dealers and cooperatives. For this he compiled comprehensive sales documentation containing convincing text, operator manuals and spare parts lists.  

Even as far back as 1906, Heinrich Dreyer created the phrase “We have to go out into the world“ and he sold the first winnowers to Chile. Under this guideline he created the basis for what is still valid today, the strong export success of the Amazone Group. It was also Heinrich Dreyer who recognised, at an early stage, the promotional effectiveness of the name Amazone. Therefore the company was renamed in 1915 as Amazonen-Werke. 

As a “good boss“, Heinrich Dreyer succeeded in winning good employees and to motivate them for their outstanding performance. He was the model who always set a good example. In addition he was the father figure of the big Amazone family who was admired by all due to his many talents. 

Finally, Heinrich Dreyer was a clever tactician who always minimised the risk and who, even by major success, was never carried away by incautious actions. So at the helm of the “Amazone Ship“, he negotiated dangerous storms and was able to maintain his company even during the destructive inflation of the early 1920s. 

Today Amazonen-Werke would not exist, if Heinrich Dreyer had not established and maintained the company with such cleverness and wisdom. Today, Amazonen-Werke with its numerous production sites in Germany, France and Russia is still directed as an independent, pure family-owned company by his great grand-sons, Christian and Dr. Justus Dreyer.