WHAT IS KONTINO MADE OF?
The founder of Kontino, Toivo Matikkala, worked in Germany’s Lübeck in his youth in the 1920´s, where he created contacts with European steel suppliers and exporting companies.
In 1928 Matikkala returned to Helsinki and founded Kontino in order to answer to the increasing steel demand in Finland. Already since the beginning he was importing steel products.
Still today Kontino orders steel from the suppliers with whom the first contracts were made with in the 1930’s and 1940’s.
In the spring of 1930 a lawyer drafted a contract, the realisation of which would mean big changes for Kontino’s future.
Negotiations of a merger with steel supplier Hans Schlüter were on the home stretch, and all that was needed were the owners’ signatures on the contract.
But doubt had arisen, and Matikkala decided to pull out of the contract at the last minute. The relations to European steel mills were strong so there was no need for a middleman.
The company’s first own warehouse was built in Helsinki’s Sörnäinen in 1943. Until then, steel was transported to customers straight from the port.
The current warehouses in Hakkila, Vantaa, and Kolmenkulma, Tampere, were built in 1969 and 1972. The headquarters operated in Palace building until 1995, before it was transferred to the premises of Vantaa warehouse.
Steel was transported easily from warehouses to builders and workshops via railways all across Finland. Today steel is mainly transported with trucks.
The world grew and upon entering the 21st century, corporate reorganisation had affected nearly all of the renowned companies in the steel industry. All except Kontino.
Decades did not shake Kontino too much, and its duty to serve Finnish construction and engineering industry has remained the same for more than 90 years.
Much like steel, not shaken by one century, Kontino will continue the responsible steel trade from people to people in the following decades.
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