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Reza Pahlavi, the Shah of Persia, with wife Farah Diba

Reza Pahlavi, the Shah of Persia, with wife Farah Diba
Source: dpa

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Friedrich or Farah?

No, the Krupp steel plant won't be renamed the Farah Diba Works - though it's not a bad idea. After all, she is the wife of its new co-owner, the bulletShah of Iran! On 17 July 1974 the Government of Iran buys a 25.01% share in the Friedrich-Krupp-Hüttenwerke AG. For the company, it's a welcome cash injection.

Krupp, one of the biggest arms suppliers, gets through two world wars without a scratch - those notorious Krupp bulletcanons, that hardened steel so admired by Adolf Hitler.

After Germany's bulletcapitulation, Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach receives a twelve-year prison sentence for plundering foreign property and employing slave labour. His personal wealth is confiscated. But not for long: by 1951 Krupp has been pardoned and reimbursed!

Krupp guides his company through the crisis years when German steel is no longer in demand. The government has to help out, but only at a price: the family business with all its capital becomes the property of a foundation, the Krupp-Stiftung.

Alfried Krupp dies in 1967, but his dying wish is realised in 1969 with the foundation of the Krupp GmbH, a private limited company. The steelworks, the Krupp-Hütte, only forms part of the company.

After Iran's buy-in, the Krupp-Stiftung holds 74.99% of the whole company. At that time, almost 30% of the company's turnover comes from steels and alloys, but in the following years bulletKrupp evolves from a steel giant into a multi-product conglomerate.

Krupp enters into a series of different bulletalliances while seeking to maintain the company's traditional strengths.

Dirk Bitzer

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