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Sabroe celebrates 125 years

DENMARK: Sabroe, a name which, along with its polar bear logo, has become synonymous with industrial refrigeration, is celebrating 125 years in business.

What started with a high-performing refrigeration machine – produced in a small company founded by engineer Thomas Sabroe in 1897 in Aarhus – has since developed into a global brand under the Johnson Controls umbrella.

Only one year after the company was founded, Sabroe’s carbon dioxide refrigeration machine was making inroads into the market, with exports starting to dairy companies in several European countries.

Sabroe’s CO2 compressor from 1897

Locally, Sabroe’s success was fundamental to Aarhus becoming a dynamic industrial town, as well as boosting economic growth in the entire West Denmark region. By supplying dairies and abattoirs with reliable refrigeration solutions, Sabroe also contributed greatly to the development of Danish agriculture.

The business was acquired by York in 1999 for $407m, subsequently becoming part of the Johnson Controls group following the acquisition of York in 2005.   

Today, Sabroe is renowned for its cutting-edge high-quality products, including high-tech compressors, chillers and heat pumps. Sabroe’s customised refrigeration and heating solutions support numerous industries, ranging from pharmaceuticals to energy infrastructure, food and beverage, as well as breweries, automotive and marine transport. The sports and entertainment industries also use Sabroe’s cooling and heating systems in stadiums, ice-rings and bobsleigh runs.

“This anniversary is a truly remarkable moment for our Johnson Controls team in Denmark. Our more than 700 employees in Denmark are extremely proud of our rich history. Many of our employees have been part of our family for 20, 30, 40 and even 60 years of dedicated and passionate collaboration. We all feel privileged to continue to pursue the innovation journey that Thomas Ths Sabroe embarked on 125 years ago,” said Johnson Controls Denmark general manager Lene Overgaard Andersen.

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