Heinrich Schulte establishes the enterprise as a lock manufacturing business. Already long before 1840, the official year of foundation, ancestors of the Schulte family were self-employed master locksmiths.

Devolution from father to son

After the death of his father, Carl Eduard Schulte takes over the operation at the tender age of nineteen and gave it the name the company still bears today.

Purchase of a larger piece of land on Friedrichstraße and start of the construction of the factory

The beginnings on Friedrichstraße

Move into the new factory building located behind the front dwelling house (which later became the office building).
Entry of the firm C.Ed. Schulte in the commercial register; the company has already 30 employees.

The first steam engine

Beginning of the industrial lock production with one of the first steam engines to be installed in Velbert

First cylinder lock manufacturer in Germany

CES pioneers the production of cylinders and locking systems in Germany.

The first master key system

CES successfully completes one of the biggest projects in its history: For the new construction of the University of Cologne, CES supplies one of the largest locking systems ever installed worldwide. The grand master key locks 867 cylinders.

The buildings erected in 1908 and in 1920/23 are joined together.

The new building on Oststraße is constructed.

The company specializes in the development and manufacturing of cylinders and locking systems.

The CES branch factory in Herten is constructed.

Acquisition of the lock factory of Niederhoff+Sieper

The entire mechanical manufacturing is concentrated in the new branch factory on Mettmanner Straße, Velbert.

Inauguration of the new administrative building

With the construction of the new administration building on Friedrichstraße, CES also leaves a fresh mark in the urban landscape.

Acquisition of plots adjoining our main factory and construction of a new machine shop with the subsequent combination of all activities and workplaces of the 500 employees in Velbert

Presentation of the first electronically controlled cylinder lock, developed in three years of intense collaboration with Fraunhofer Institut


On the occasion of its 150th anniversary, CES establishes the CARL-EDUARD-SCHULTE foundation which focuses on the promotion of young engineering and scientific professionals. This is targeted at young researchers and engineers who develop future-oriented innovations in the field of locking systems and related manufacturing technologies. Every year, the foundation awards a prize for excellent diploma theses. By 2015, 74 award winners have been honoured and received 135,000 euros in prize money.

ISO 9001 certification.

Launch of the CEMO motor cylinder.

Introduction of the reversible key system WM.

Grant of trademark protection for the key sections WM and KM.

The probably most prominent project in the corporate history, the Berlin Reichstag, is  equipped with a CES locking system and dedicated with a key ceremony.

Market launch of the electronic security system CES-OMEGA

Key ceremony at the Federal Chancellor's Office

Start of the cylinder manufacturing by CESrom SRL in Sibiu, Romania For the first time, CES is an exhibitor at the BIG 5 in Dubai.

Spinning-off of the electronics division into CEStronics GmbH

Renaming of the lock factory Niederhoff + Sieper to CESlocks GmbH

Start of the marketing of OMEGA LEGIC

Key ceremony at the Dresdner Frauenkirche

The work organization is comprehensively re-engineered with the CES Agile Production. Manufacturing processes are optimized by small and flexible units. An excellent example is the S48 segment, which delivers bespoke locking systems to customers within 48 hours of receipt of the order.

CES uses the Kanban method to control the warehouse organization.

CES is founding member of the Schlüsselregion e.V. industrial network.

Launch of the new OMEGA LEGIC fitting IES.

Establishment of CESfrance SRL in Paris, France.

Large crowd at the open day on the CES premises.

CES Gruppe establishes two new subsidiaries

CESnederland B.V. Apeldoorn, The Netherlands

CESitalia srl., Italy

Together with eleven companies and the local authorities of Velbert and Heiligenhaus, CES initiates the Institute for Security Systems ISS in cooperation with Bergische Universität Wuppertal.

CES delivers locks and cylinders for the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world.

Launch of the new key design.

The first students under the cooperative engineer training scheme (KIA) start  at CES Gruppe.

CES starts the company-wide Continuous Improvement Process initiative. Through structured training, employees learn to contribute own ideas for the improvement of work structures and products. The first Muda analyses and the first set-up time workshops are carried out.

Restoration of the historical facade and opening of a small lock museum and a modern show room.

Innovative key section series with undercut for upscale industrial buildings.

For the first time, the Chamber of Commerce commends CES for superior performance in vocational training.

Establishment of CESakademie.

Emphasizing systematic innovation management, CES starts the Agile Product Development system.

Introduction of the electronic locking system OMEGA FLEX, a complete in-house development.

Comprehensive alteration and new construction measures in the corporate headquarters aimed at aligning the processes of prefabrication, assembly and administration even more efficiently and making the company fit for the challenges of the future.

The Industrial Engineering department is established which is designed to improve efficiency in the entire company.

After the completion of the construction work, the reception is moved, and the newly constructed highly modern offices in and above the former staff restaurant are occupied. The new staff restaurant is opened and designed to become the company’s nerve centre, serving as a central communication hub and meeting point for the employees.

In manufacturing, processes are controlled with shop floor leadership.

Launch of the vertical reversible key section series WD with undercut

For the first time, the integrated degree programme combining academic and vocational studies is also offered for future Industrial Business Management Assistants.

175th anniversary

As part of the celebration of the 175th anniversary of the family-owned business, CES presents the CES Art Award.

Certification under the DIN EN ISO 50001 standard
(energy management system).