In the Archive for Austrian Corporate History and Culture, company history is researched, preserved and brought to life. The pilot project explores the rich history of the HOERBIGER Group with its Viennese roots.
Given the growing research interest in corporate history and corporate culture, the archive focuses on the rich company history and the diverse business cultures that have characterised Austria’s economic landscape.

The Archive for Austrian Corporate History and Culture is based on the extensive corporate history holdings of the Technisches Museum Wien (Vienna Museum of Science and Technology) and the opportunity to collaborate with companies. An outstanding example of this initiative is the HOERBIGER corporate archive project.

HOERBIGER corporate archive pilot project
The Technisches Museum Wien and HOERBIGER have been working together since April 2024 to research, preserve and communicate the company history of the globally active HOERBIGER Group with its Austrian roots. In 1895, Hanns Hörbiger – father of Hans Robert, his successor Alfred and the well-known actors Paul and Attila Hörbiger – made a groundbreaking technical invention: the “first frictionless plate valve”. In the same year, he patented his invention, leading to a significant boost in steel production efficiency. In 1900, Hörbiger established his first design office in Budapest, which was moved to Vienna just three years later. This laid the foundation for the group’s unique history.

The project team is committed to scientific cataloguing, careful maintenance of the corporate archive and the exciting task of bringing the company’s history to life. One of the main responsibilities is to manage the thousands of primary sources that are stored both in the archive of the Technisches Museum Wien and in the corporate archive in Seestadt Aspern. The holdings provide an insight into the development of the HOERBIGER company, from the application for the first patent and the establishment of the design office to the group’s international expansion under Martina Hörbiger, Alfred Hörbiger’s widow. The holdings also contain numerous documents on the pseudo-scientific “World Ice Theory” proposed by Hanns Hörbiger. Although quickly discredited, the World Ice Theory nevertheless reveals the complex connections between technology, business, science and politics.

The valuable archive material serves as the basis for the scientific cataloguing of the company’s history up to the present day. Drawing from the extensive holdings of the HOERBIGER corporate archive and the partial holdings in the Technisches Museum Wien, the project team traces the achievements and challenges and sheds light on the key players involved in the group’s history.