Sales Partner

Two decades of collaboration call for celebration

Celebrating 20 years of innovation: Groupe Efire and KLINGER's enduring partnership, driving industries forward with top-notch sealing solutions.

2023 marks the 20th anniversary of the partnership between KLINGER and Groupe Efire. The successful 20 years of close collaboration have culminated in this year's anniversary celebration.

The world of industry has always been driven by two key principles: relentless innovation and adaptive growth. Groupe Efire and KLINGER Group are two companies that have steadfastly embodied these principles throughout their history. Both have navigated their unique paths, etching their names in the history of industry with every strategic acquisition, innovative product, and focused growth effort.

Contacts mentioned in the article:

Martin Einfeldt, Managing Director of KLINGER Bartsch

Kurt Bussecker, Sales Director at KLINGER Dichtungstechnik

Wolfgang Kohlbacher, Area Sales Manager at KLINGER Dichtungstechnik

Groupe Efire, Bâtiment 1 - 85 chemin des platières, Chasse-sur-Rhône, Rhône-Alpes 38670, France

Parallel journeys: Groupe Efire and KLINGER

Both Groupe Efire and KLINGER have been relentless in their pursuit of innovation. While Groupe Efire focused on acquiring and preserving the unique identities of various companies, KLINGER brought revolutionizing products to the market, like the world's first asbestos-free gasket material, KLINGERSIL. The history of these companies shows a remarkable ability to adapt and innovate. "In any enduring partnership, understanding each other's unique needs and desires is essential. Over the years, a foundational trust has formed between our two companies, invaluable to our continued collaboration. Looking ahead, I envision a parallel solid and sustainable business growth that will allow us to increase our joint market presence in France", says Kurt Bussecker, Sales Director of KLINGER Dichtungstechnik.

During the anniversary celebrations, Barbara Köfinger (third from right), Kurt Bussecker (center) and Wolfgang Kohlbacher (third from left) from KLINGER Dichtungstechnik presented a genuine Austrian Sachertorte to the Management Board of Groupe Efire.

Anniversary celebration in Lyon

The long-standing partnership between KLINGER Group and Groupe Efire was commemorated with an event held in Lyon, France. Representatives from both companies came together at Eynard Robin – one of Groupe Efire’s subsidiaries – to honor their shared history, success, and mutual respect. The occasion was marked by speeches reflecting on past achievements and looking forward to future goals, with a strong emphasis on continued cooperation and mutual growth. In addition to formal proceedings, the event also featured a plant tour at Eynard Robin – and team activities designed to foster camaraderie and team spirit between the two companies. These activities not only allowed everyone to celebrate their past successes but also strengthened bonds, reinforcing the unity that has been a hallmark of the KLINGER and Groupe Efire partnership for two decades.

The event served as a testament to a partnership that has thrived over the years and is set to flourish in the many more to come.

Legacy of leadership

Leadership played a significant role in shaping the fortunes of both companies. The Bedos family led Groupe Efire through expansion and innovation, while the Klinger family has overseen KLINGER through five generations, ensuring it stays committed to the future and development. By extending their reach beyond national boundaries, both companies ensured a global presence. “In the highly competitive sealing niche market, KLINGER empowers us to distinguish ourselves with top-notch products”, emphasizes Erick Charretton, Sales Manager at Eynard Robin.

The management board at Groupe Efire is confident about the future and believes that their investments in a talented workforce and KLINGER products will undoubtedly prove a successful combination.

Creating history together

The business relationship between KLINGER and Groupe Efire commenced in 2003. Patrick Bedos signed an agreement with Thomas Klinger-Lohr to become a distributor in France and French-speaking Africa for KLINGER sealing materials. “Geographical proximity has always been a factor for Groupe Efire”, as Cédric Grandemenge, Member of the Management Board, explains. Among the vast range of products Groupe Efire offers its customers, several KLINGER items have emerged as favorites. The top sellers include the KLINGER Spiral Wound Gaskets. Another standout product is the KLINGERSIL C-4430, a high-quality material that offers superior sealing performance. Other popular choices are Graphite and Mica Laminate Sheets from KLINGER Switzerland, known for their exceptional thermal resistance and stability. As the Purchasing Manager at Eynard Robin, Catherine Croes interacts with KLINGER on a daily basis and states: "Their worldwide presence and our dedicated contacts are a bonus”.

Optimizing operations

Thanks to the efficient operational setup, Groupe Efire is able to execute orders swiftly, allowing the focus to shift from day-to-day orders to long-term developments.

KLINGER products are renowned and referenced in the technical specifications of major industrial companies

Erick Charretton, Sales Manager at Eynard Robin

One person who is well placed to comment on the sealing technology industry is Pierre-Yves Baratier. He has spent 38 years working with the French sealing technology provider, from operating as a gasket-cutter, taking over the production to overseeing shutdowns. He offers a nugget of wisdom, saying, "There is no such thing as a perfect gasket; you need the right combination and the right match between the gasket and the operating conditions."

Expanding horizons

This perspective connects to the varied nature of the cooperation between Groupe Efire and KLINGER. Martin Einfeldt, Managing Director of KLINGER Bartsch, details that the cooperation “also includes graphite products, which are specifically used in the chemical sector and nuclear industry”. The diverse product offering by Groupe Efire has drawn the attention of big players in the industry. A major pharmaceutical powerhouse has chosen the group as one of only two suppliers for its modern technologies. This success has had the effect that Groupe Efire is now also expanding into the pharmaceutical and nuclear sectors.

The CEOs of KLINGER Group, Christoph Klinger-Lohr (left) and Daniel Schibli (right) held on to more memories together with Patrick Bedos (center), CEO of Groupe Efire.

Shaping the future

The partnership between KLINGER and Groupe Efire is built on mutual trust, shared vision, and collaborative effort. This partnership has led to a synergistic effect, with each organization leveraging the other's strengths to achieve greater growth and market penetration.

When I started working at Eynard Robin in 2008 I soon realized that KLINGER was an incredible door opener. Many customers were still talking about ‘Klingerit’ which was a generic word for gasket sheets. With a reputation like that, it made my job as a sales representative much easier.

Léonard Auberger, OEM Sales Director at Groupe Efire

KLINGER benefits from Groupe Efire's local knowledge, relationships, and distribution network, while Groupe Efire is able to offer their customers KLINGER's high-quality products and benefit from their international reputation.

The birth and rise of Groupe Efire

Groupe Efire's roots stretch back to 1872 with the establishment of Eynard Robin in Lyon, France. The beginnings of this company set the stage for a journey that would span over 150 years, culminating in a group composed of 13 companies. Marcel Bedos took over the company in 1983 when it had just four employees. Marcel, along with his wife and son, forged a new path for Eynard Robin. Later, in 1996, Patrick Bedos, the son, took over the reins and introduced an era of exponential growth, marked by strategic acquisitions, development of multiple sites, and a significant increase in employee numbers.

Groupe Efire today is a testament to a legacy of hard work, continuous learning, and pride in their craft. With a robust national presence and a keen focus on innovating to adapt to changing industry norms, they've continually upgraded their machinery and offerings, carving out their niche in diverse industrial sectors.

The KLINGER Group: over 130 years of industrial expertise

In 1886, the young engineer Richard Klinger set up a small production facility in Vienna, marking the genesis of KLINGER. Richard's invention of the level gauge and the revolutionary gasket, Klingerit, underscored the group's pioneering nature early on. Post the Second World War, KLINGER resumed production in 1947 despite severe setbacks, demonstrating resilience and adaptability. Under the leadership of Karl Klinger, the company continued to innovate and opened a new market segment - manufacturing brake pads. KLINGER's journey from the late 50s till the present day has been marked by geographic and product expansion, technological innovation, and a commitment to asbestos-free materials. Today, KLINGER has a presence in over 60 countries worldwide.


For Catherine Croes (left, Groupe Efire) the event was the perfect opportunity to meet face-to-face with Wolfgang Kohlbacher (right), Area Sales Manager at KLINGER Dichtungstechnik.

Pierre-Yves Baratier (center, Groupe Efire) will be passing the torch on to the next generation, and he hopes they will continue to grow with KLINGER.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ)

When was Groupe Efire established?

Groupe Efire traces its history back to 1872 with the establishment of Eynard Robin.

What were some of KLINGER's early innovations?

KLINGER, under the leadership of Richard Klinger, invented the liquid level gauge and Klingerit, a revolutionary fiber-reinforced gasket.

What is the global presence of KLINGER today?

Today, KLINGER is active with more than 45 operational companies across more than 60 countries worldwide.

How have both Groupe Efire and KLINGER demonstrated adaptability?

Both companies have displayed adaptability in the face of challenges, be it Groupe Efire's strategic acquisitions to expand and grow, or KLINGER's resilience post-Second World War and its commitment to asbestos-free materials.

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