Tretorn was founded in Helsingborg, Sweden in 1891, and has come a long way since. Today, you can find our brand in stores all over the world, but we remain committed to our living heritage. For us, this means proven expertise in creating products that can withstand Scandinavian weather without getting in the way of everyday life. It also means creating products that are stylish and worn equally by city-dwellers and nature-lovers. Ultimately, Tretorn is about celebrating both style and practicality.
In 1896, five years after the start we produced 1 million pairs of galoshes in Helsingborg and in 1900, we produced our first sneakers. Looking back we have pioneered the sneaker, the rubber boot and even the tennis ball for more than 120 years. We’ve been synonymous with the sport for the century. From our first rubber boots to the world’s first luxurious tennis sneakers.
We’re proud of our history and our legacy. From the rough weather that got us started in 1891 to the continued improvement and innovation that keeps us going, are we celebrating our living heritage. To our first 128 years – and evolving for many more years to come.
January 3rd, 1891 the Dunker family opened up the doors to the new rubber factory that came to be known as Tretorn. The number of employees was 52 and the factory floor about 2,500 square meters. The factory produced galoshes for farmers to protect their feet. The tough Scandinavian weather was challenging for the farmers who didn’t have shoes to protect them from the cold or wet weather. The new Tretorn galoshes were a big innovation, which helped farmers all over the country to stay warm and dry when they were walking the fields. In the next coming year Tretorn produced 39 000 pair of galoshes.
Tretorn’s innovative galoshes in combination with the tough Scandinavian weather, made the business expand swiftly. In only five years’ time Tretorn had reached a production of 1 million galoshes.
As the production increased, Tretorn expanded rapidly and only 9 years after the start increased the number of employees from 52 to 575.
What many don’t know is that Tretorn is the second oldest sneaker manufacture in the world. Right after the US rubber company started producing Keds. The Dunker family were big sports enthusiasts and with the knowledge how to vulcanizing rubber Henry Dunker decided to start going into the sports business. 1st May 1900, we produced our first rubber sole sneaker. A huge innovation in footwear and the beginning of a new era for Tretorn.
The Dunker family took their interest in sports to next level. Two years after the first sneakers launched, Henry Dunker and Tretorn first started making tennis balls. The tennis balls became very popular and were widely distributed.
Tretorn went from only producing protective galoshes for the farmers to produce the first rubber boot, as we know it today. This was a natural progression and made the rubber boot user-friendly to not only the farmers but also to regular customers.
The majority of the factory’s employees were women. So in 1911 Henry Dunker started one of the world’s first private day-care and called it “Barnkrubban”. They took care of the employee’s children whilst they were working. This set the standard on how the relationship and responsibility was developed between the employees and employer. Some say that “Barnkrubban” is the reason for the saying “CSR The Swedish Way”.
In 1915 Tretorn was appointed by the Swedish Royal Court by king Gustav V. Gustav V was a huge sports and hunting enthusiast and a famous tennis player under the pseudonym Mr. G. in Sweden known as V Gurra. Tretorn are still today supplying the Royal Court.