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Wenger is one of two companies that have manufactured Swiss Army knives. Based in Delémont, Wenger was acquired by rival Victorinox in 2005.

Early history

In 1893 at Delémont in the Canton of Jura, in Switzerland, the industrial cutlery house of Paul Boéchat & Cie received a contract from the Swiss Army to produce knives. In 1898, Theodore Wenger was hired to be its manager and later renamed the company Wenger & Co. S.A..

One of Wenger's first acts was to acquire a manufacturer of spoons and forks which he moved to a rented factory in Delemont. In 1900 a new facility was built. Both the utensil operations and the Courtetelle cutlery production were incorporated into the new plant now called Fabrique Suisse de Coutellerie et Services.

In 1908 the Swiss Army decided to split the contract, with half of the order going to Victorinox, in the German-speaking canton of Schwyz, and the other half to Wenger in the French-speaking part of the canton of Bern. They claim they did this in the interest of national harmony, but they may also have been interested in fostering competitive pricing.

Modern history

  • In 1929, after Theo Wenger's death, Kaspar Oertli gained majority share in the company.
  • In 1986, the factory was modernized following a factory fire.
  • In 1988, Wenger started producing watches.
  • In 2005, Victorinox acquired Wenger. Wenger are advertised as the "Genuine Swiss Army......
  • ...

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