11. May 2024

Passion, entrepreneurial spirit and innovative drive

Johannes und Yvonne Dallmer im Interview Foto: Dallmer GmbH + Co. KG

This year, Dallmer turns 111. Johannes Dallmer and Yvonne Dallmer are now the third and fourth generation to serve as management. This wonderful anniversary is an opportunity for us to meet the two of them for an interview and to look back on their personal experiences and thoughts over the years.

1. What sets the Dallmer family company apart?

Yvonne Dallmer: I think it’s three things: people, innovations and investments. Teamwork is the most important thing for us. We have a great team of people who are passionate about their work. Half of our employees have been with us for more than 10 years. Another thing that sets us apart is our innovative drive and willingness to invest. Our DallFlex shower channel system is a good example of this. Eleven years ago, we decided to invest in a new technology, to build up our metal processing and experiment with milling techniques.

Johannes Dallmer: More than anything, we’ve found employees who have adapted to new situations and developed our company’s expertise. 

Yvonne Dallmer: Your whole idea of the product was also pretty disruptive, that drainage should work differently. That led us to develop a new solution with clean surface drainage. 

Johannes Dallmer: I always say we have to be ready at any moment to go back to the drawing board, to rethink and reorganize. You should regularly ask yourself: Can this be done better? Can it make more sense? Then you need to find a way to make it happen.

Yvonne Dallmer: Fundamentally, there’s a level of optimism in everything we do. This includes now, with the downturn in the construction industry following a few truly spectacular years of high growth across the whole sector. We believe it’s going to turn around again. We take a pretty level-headed approach. As a family business, we plan for the long term, not just in four-year contracts. 

2. When you reflect on your time as part of the management, what comes to mind?

Yvonne Dallmer: One occasion we often think back on is our 100th anniversary. We celebrated in a historic hall, steeped in industrial culture, in Hamm together with our employees, friends, service providers and suppliers. There were about 600 guests. For me, it was wonderful and also important that we were able to celebrate together.

Johannes Dallmer: And employees can bring their partners. That’s just a given. We celebrate almost every year, and partners are always invited. It gives the event a different atmosphere. Often, we celebrate in our own offices. Usually when a new space has opened up after construction.

Yvonne Dallmer: During the pandemic, we organised small local parties, and even then we had to get creative. We always found a solution. The pandemic generally was a difficult time, and another one we all look back on together. I think we went through it incredibly well because we took decisions, treated each other with respect and everyone looked out for each other's health. Plus, we never had to implement Kurzarbeit. (Kurzarbeit is a federal government programme which partially subsidises salaries when companies fall on hard times, usually resulting in slightly reduced pay for employees). We wanted employees to be able to rely on receiving their full salary. That’s a good example of something we accomplished in our time together and how we work with people. 

Johannes Dallmer: Yes, that’s right. In just a few days, a conversion was carried out to minimise personal contact. We weren’t fully prepared for the transition to working from home, but we managed to provide our employees with the necessary equipment at home in a fairly short space of time.

3. The Dallmer team has been attending the SHK fairs for some time now. What were your first trade fairs like? And how have they changed for Dallmer?

Johannes Dallmer: We had a small stand at our first exhibition in Frankfurt in 1963. We were new, so nobody knew who we were. Since then, we have taken part in all the major trade fairs, including ISH and BAU, as well as the regional trade fairs. There were even some other local exhibitions back then, like in Leipzig and Berlin.

Yvonne Dallmer: And since then, we have found ourselves in the rather luxurious position at German trade fairs of the SHK audience knowing us well and wanting to see the latest from us. That has been a major positive development in our company’s history. And trade fairs are generally a critical touchpoint for us for leading the conversation about the products.

Johannes Dallmer: I was 14 when I attended my first trade fair. My mother died very early, so I went with my father and helped set up the stand. Thankfully, we now have professionals who specialise in assembling company stands.

Yvonne Dallmer: Together with our architecture firm, we have even won design awards for good exhibition stand design. Some of our clients have even told people that they should stop by the Dallmer stand because it was so worth seeing. We simply live for good design.

Johannes Dallmer: Another important aspect of the trade fair is that we meet the sanitary wholesalers and fabricators there. Some items that are still selling well today originate from discussions with the installer. The ball joint is part of this story. We made it first. Even the first bathroom drain was height-adjustable. And we have met new distributors at trade fairs, many of whom we still work with today.

Yvonne Dallmer: The Frankfurt trade fair ISH is always a great experience for us because our distributors from abroad usually stop by. Some are even the second generation distributing for us, and those relationships have become even more like friendships over the years. It is also very important to us that we all spend an evening together and exchange ideas beyond just business. 

4. Dallmer and design have become inextricably linked. What chapters in design history has Dallmer written?

Johannes Dallmer: My father was a master engraver. So he was always very interested in design. And I have always had a keen interest in design when it comes to product development. Like with flush plates. There were plenty of competitors, but ours were very cleverly designed and therefore very attractively shaped. Ours even won an award.  Another example is grates, which used to just be slotted. I started to develop them into beautiful designer gratings. There has never been such a variety of gratings.

Yvonne Dallmer: I’ve been on the Board for 15 years. I worked here during my school holidays and completed internships. We also lived on the premises. The big conference room used to be our living room. My roots here run deep. However, I don’t have my father’s engineering gene.

Johannes Dallmer: But the technical understanding. That’s what matters.

Yvonne Dallmer: That’s right. And I’m enthusiastic about design. That’s why I am especially involved in marketing. Specifically, I am consistently driving forward the visual brand design and ensuring that bathroom trends are incorporated into the Dallmer product world at an early stage. 

After 111 years of the company, Dallmer stands more than ever for innovation and is developing itself into an architecture brand through its high-quality design. The family-owned company continuously invests in its site – in new machines, architecturally appealing buildings and committed employees. The drainage specialist has developed planning and action strategies that are fit for purpose, not only in the present, but also in the future.

Weitere Nachrichten

Shape Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

Drainage by design.
Since 1913


Customer service
+32 3 860 01 90

Service times:
Monday to Friday 8:30 - 17:00


Vigotec NV
Schoonmansveld 52
2870 Puurs-Sint-Amands

Phone: +32 (0) 3 860 01 90

Shape Copy 3 Created with Sketch.

Show address


Vigotec NV
Schoonmansveld 52
2870 Puurs-Sint-Amands

Phone: +32 (0) 3 860 01 90
Fax: +32 (0) 3 860 01 99

Download selected items
Order printed copies