In every challenge we face and in every decision we make today it is a tradition to us to draw strength from our past. For we know how hard it is to take the very first step and what difficulties a newborn needs to go through before it can stand on its feet. We cherish our past. It is also our belief that this brings much responsibility to the new generations. The responsibility to achieve continuous progress. Every day we manage to stay ahead of tomorrow we will continue to grow.
Below you may catch few glimpses from the life of the SUPTEX family since its foundation.
Manufacturing in a basement store
1967 Two one-time blue-collar workers Ali AL and Fikri TAK together decide to go for a new venture of their own at a time when availability and variety for any rubber sealing compound was relatively limited in the country. The two co-found SUPTEX Oil Seals in July 1967.
They start the business in a small workshop in Istanbul, with 2 hand-presses for vulcanizing rubber, a punch press for steel cutting and forming, a vertical drill to remove rubber flash, a simple chemical treatment apparatus and a single employee. They acquire the rubber from a local supplier and sell the very first seal they manage to manufacture, sized 50x72x10, to a small company in Karakoy, Istanbul. Daily output is around 100 pieces.
Turkey is still in the early stages of its economic development. The GNP is around $12 billion and exports slightly above $500 million US dollars.
1968 Fikri TAK, one of the co-founders, tragically lost his life in a car accident.
1973 The company moves to its new place in Istanbul where it will stay for the next 17 years. New hydraulic presses and a punch press are added to the highly modest machine shop. Entire equipment for production consist of a rubber cylinder, 2 punch presses, 4 vulcanization presses, a lathe and 4 drills used as spring coilers.
1975 Construction of the main factory building, house of operations today, takes off in Kartal on the Asian side of Istanbul.
1978 The factory building is completed. All production processes will be gradually shifted to the new building while the old establishment on the European side will continue to serve as the head office and warehouse.
From shop to factory
1979 Reorganization of the manufacturing processes and relocation of the production machinery are completed.
1982 A semi-automatic flash remover, a spring coiler and a rubber mixer are added to the tool shop. Suptex® product range hits 1,000.
1984 The company sets up a chemistry lab within the factory. The first computer (an Amstrad CPC 464), to be used for accounting, is purchased the same year.
1985 Certificates of compliance with TSE (Turkish Standards Institution) standards and eligibility for production are obtained.
1988 First SUPTEX export goes to Greece.
The same year witnessed record high for the countrys exports with more than $11.5 billion USD worth of goods and services exported.
1990 Head office and warehouse move to a new address in Istanbul to stay there for another 7 years.
1992 The first attendance to an international fair in Kazakhstan.
Early steps toward professionalism
1993 The company is incorporated under its new title SUPTEK Yag Keceleri San. Ve Tic. A.S. (SUPTEK A.S.) but stays a family business. SUPTEX remains the legal trademark of the company.
1994 SUPTEK A.S. adds the first CNC lathe and CNC milling cutter to the tool shop, giving a boost to in-house mould making and processing.
Turkey suffers the most severe financial crisis in her history. Turkish Lira is devalued by 70 per cent. GNP is shrunk by 26 per cent from the previous year down to $132 billion US dollars.
1995 SUPTEK A.S. together with its partner co-venture SUPTEK Conta San. ve Tic. Ltd. Şti. (SUPTEK LTD.). The new venture will design and manufacture hydraulic and pneumatic seals, and gaskets.
1997 Head office joins the factory, effectively concluding its standalone operations.
1998 Factory building receives an expansion to house the growing need for space. New units join the organization. SUPTEX product range reaches 3,000.
1999 The company initiates standardization efforts to achieve compliance with ISO 9001:1994 quality standards.
2001 SUPTEK receives DIN EN ISO 9001:1994 MfQA compliance certificate due to successful implementation of its first quality system. A year later the ISO 9001:1994 MfQA certificate is upgraded to ISO 9001:2000 QMS.
Turkey faces the second most devastating economic crisis in its history. GNP drops from $200 billion to $145 billion US dollars.
2003 Two partners at SUPTEK LTD. decide to split up and go separate ways. SUPTEK A.S. reserves all rights to SUPTEK commercial title and SUPTEX trademark and decides to focus on oil seal manufacturing. SUPTEK LTD. dissolves and the former organization becomes a new entity relocating all business operations to its own plant and starting to manufacture under a new brand.
2004 New automatic vacuum presses are added to the manufacturing equipment, enabling the company to catch up with global standards for pace and capacity. This new addition enhances SUPTEK A.S.s, a long time manufacturer of non-mainstream special seals in a niche market, capability to compete in the high-volume segment. The number of employees reaches 100.
2006 SUPTEK A.S. decides to enter the hydraulic and pneumatic sealing segment with own brand and capabilities. The company creates a new business unit to manufacture pneumatic and hydraulic seals under SupteX® brand name.
GNP reaches $400 billion dollars while exports hit record high $85 billion USD for the first time.
Family even stronger with new set of goals
2010 First comprehensive, publicly funded R&D project is completed.
2012 SUPTEK A.S. moves to its new location established on 8.000 sqm area in IDOSB in Istanbul.
2015 The family, utilizing its 50-year experience in rubber industry, decides to invest in industrial hoses under a new organization, KAUFLEX.
2016 Efforts to become a part of the automotive supply chain result in certification for ISO/TS 16949.
GNP exceeds $800 billion USD. Exports start to push the limit of 150 billion dollars.
2017 Management systems certified for ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001.