Faber-Castell is one of the world’s largest and oldest manufacturers of pens, pencils, other office supplies (e.g., staplers, slide rules, erasers, rulers) and art supplies, as well as high-end writing instruments and luxury leather goods. Headquartered in Stein, Germany, it operates 14 factories and 20 sales units throughout the globe. The Faber-Castell Group employs a staff of approximately 7,000 and does business in more than 100 countries. The House of Faber-Castell is the family which founded and continues to exercise leadership within the corporation. They manufacture about 2 billion pencils in more than 120 different colors every year.
Faber-Castell was founded in 1761 at Stein near Nuremberg by cabinet maker Kaspar Faber (1730–84) as the A.W. Faber Company, and has remained in the Faber family for eight generations. It opened branches in New York (1849), London (1851), Paris (1855), and expanded to Vienna (1872) and St. Petersburg (1874). It opened a factory in Geroldsgrün, Bavaria, where slide rules were produced. It expanded internationally and launched new products under Kaspar Faber’s ambitious great-grandson, Johann Lothar Freiherr von Faber (1817–96).
In 1900, after the marriage of Lothar’s granddaughter and heiress with a count of Castell, the A.W. Faber enterprise took the name of Faber-Castell and a new logo, combining the Faber motto, Since 1761, with the “jousting knights” of the Castells’ coat-of-arms. A.W. Faber is the oldest brand-name pencil continuously sold in the US, having begun sales in 1870.
Today, the company operates 14 factories and 20 sales units, with six in Europe, four in Asia, three in North America, five in South America, and one each in Australia and New Zealand. The Faber-Castell Group employs a staff of approximately 7,000 and does business in more than 100 countries.