95th Birthday of Company Founder Dr Karl Busch

buschJust before his birthday, Dr Karl Busch traveled to the Netherlands with his wife Ayhan to attend this year’s international Busch Group Manager Meeting. The co-founder and co-owner of the world market leader, who celebrated his 95th birthday on April 20, 2024, still follows the product presentations of his company with great interest.

Busch Family

Together with his wife Ayhan and their children Ayla, Sami and Kaya Busch, Dr Karl Busch manages the worldwide group. In over 60 years, the Busch Group has grown to become the second largest vacuum pump manufacturer in the world. It all began as a small two-person company founded by Dr Karl Busch and his wife Ayhan in Schopfheim in 1963.

Engineer and inventor Karl Busch met his wife Ayhan during his mechanical engineering studies in Munich, where she studied dentistry. Prior to his studies, he attended and graduated from the upper secondary school in Schopfheim, while working as an apprentice mechanical fitter at the same time. In 1960, he obtained his doctorate at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) on the topic of friction and wear in water-lubricated rotary compressors. After that, he first worked at his grandfather Karl Wittig’s company in Schopfheim as a design manager before he and his wife founded Dr.-Ing. Karl Busch GmbH – today, Busch Vacuum Solutions. In 1972, the company moved to Maulburg.

When self-service supermarkets emerged in Germany in the early 1960s, many household-sized foodstuffs had to be packaged in a manner that was both hygienic and visually appealing. Dr Karl Busch developed the first vacuum pump specifically for this application: the HUCKEPACK. This is a particularly compact and robust rotary vane vacuum pump with pump stages arranged one above the other. This technology helped keep foodstuffs fresher for longer. Later, the engineer revolutionized food packaging with the successor product, the R5. This vacuum pump became the industrial standard, and his company became the world market leader in this area – with a market share of over 85 percent.

Dr Ing Karl Busch

In April 1971, Busch founded its first overseas subsidiary in the United Kingdom and was the first German industrial company to sign a cooperation agreement for manufacturing in China in 1981. Pfeiffer Vacuum and centrotherm clean solutions have now joined forces with Busch Vacuum Solutions to form the new Busch Group. The company founder looks back with appreciation: “I am very grateful to my wife, who is my partner not only in private life but also in business. My wife was a leader, especially in sales. I would like to thank our children for helping us move forward in a way that my wife and I couldn’t have done alone. And of course, my special thanks go to our employees, who have built Busch with us and without whom it would not be what it is today.”

Dr Karl Busch and his wife Ayhan repeatedly show their gratitude through their great social and cultural commitment. For them, generous donations to people in crisis regions are just as much a matter of course as conveying support to regional associations in and around Maulburg. For this philanthropic attitude, the Busch couple was awarded the Lörrach County Gold Medal of Honor in 2022, after being awarded the Maulburg Municipality’s Honorary Citizenship in 2015.

For their outstanding entrepreneurial achievements, Dr Karl Busch, who is also honorary senator at the Technical University of Munich, received the economic medal of the state of Baden-Württemberg along with his wife Ayhan in 2019. In 2022, the couple was also recognized for their corporate culture and cooperation as Family Entrepreneur of the Year together with their children Ayla, Sami and Kaya Busch. This is the most important award for family businesses in Germany.

The fact that Dr Karl Busch can still work actively in the company even in old age is thanks to his remarkable health from a life full of sporting activities. In 1978, he cycled more than 2,600 kilometers from Maulburg to Istanbul in 15 days to open the Turkish branch of his company there. In 1994, he climbed Kilimanjaro and in 2000, together with his sons Sami and Kaya Busch, took part in the classic car rally “around the world in 80 days,” where he raised 140,000 Deutschmarks for Doctors Without Borders. In 2002, he ran the New York Marathon at the age of 73 and took part regularly in the Telford Half Marathon in England, most recently in 2017 at the age of 87.

The employees of Busch Vacuum Solutions, Pfeiffer Vacuum and centrotherm clean solutions congratulate Dr Karl Busch on his 95th birthday and wish him many more healthy and active years. www.buschvacuum.com