New Opportunities with a New Medium
Precisely on Christmas Day, 1952, the “miracle of television” revolutionizes Germany. Sensitized by market developments in the area of radio communication, Kathrein now recognises his next opportunity: Riding the wave of elation following WWII, his company begins developing television antennas. In step with the first, regular broadcasting, sales of the first televisions begin in Germany. Germany is in a whirl of construction – many new blocks containing multiple flats are erected at this time. This accounts for the growing importance of the communal antenna system at this time. Kathrein includes the corresponding amplifiers, outlets and other accessories in its range. In addition, the company also offers broadcast systems for radio and television starting in the mid-1950s. Radio broadcasting corporations also benefit from the high quality of Kathrein technology.
TV becomes the Key Medium
In 1960 there are about 3.5 million television viewers. Kathrein has approximately 600 employees at that time and – like the television market – continues to grow rapidly. In the following years numerous new buildings are necessary to keep pace with market developments. The Vice-Chancellor Willy Brandt (SPD) sets the next milestone in 1967 at the broadcasting fair in Berlin: he ushers in colour television in Germany with a symbolic push of a button. At the end of the 1960s there are just under 15 million television broadcast licences, which means that about 70 percent of households have a television.
1969 is a significant year for Kathrein: the company celebrates its 50th year with a team of about 1,000 employees. At this time, the founder of the company places a large portion of the steadily growing responsibility into the hands of proven employees.