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Siemens Building Products - Company History

Siemens has been at the forefront of technological change and social progress in the UK since 1843.

William Siemens

This was the year that William Siemens, a 19-year-old engineer and entrepreneur from Lenthe near Hannover, set foot in England armed with a patent for a revolutionary electroplating process. In a letter written at the time to his brother Werner von Siemens, William said: “My opinion is that England is the place if anything is to be done.”

Milestones & Achievements

Shortly before his twentieth birthday, William Siemens arrived in the UK with only a few pounds in his pocket. He soon struck his first business deal by selling a patent for a unique electroplating process.

Siemens opened its first UK factory in Woolwich, south London, to produce submarine cables.

Siemens provided the first electric lighting in a British theatre – London’s Savoy Theatre. Siemens dynamo machines powered the internal lights.

Siemens built the world’s first set of traffic lights at Berlin’s Potsdamer Platz. Today, Siemens manufactures and maintains more of the UK’s traffic infrastructure than any other company

Siemens was behind the first GSM mobile phone with colour display.

Siemens won its biggest ever contract in the UK – a £1 billion order to provide its new Desiro electric trains to Stagecoach Group and Angel Trains for the South West Trains network.

Continuing its focus on sustainability, a £30 million centre in East London – called the Crystal - was opened in September 2012. As part of the Green Enterprise District, the Crystal is a sustainable cities initiative by Siemens that explores how to create a better future for our cities...

Siemens Building Products
Sir William Siemens Square
GU16 8QD

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