Sauter AG

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Fr. Sauter AG
TypeAktiengesellschaft (AG)
IndustryBuilding automation, building technology
HeadquartersBasel, Basel-Stadt, Switzerland
Area served
Key people
Marc Jaquet, (Chairman of the Board of Directors);
Dr. Werner Karlen (CEO)
Revenue 401 million (2018)
Number of employees
2284 (2018)

Fr. Sauter AG is a Swiss-based Corporate group, internationally active in building automation and system integration, with headquarters in Basel. It operates from its head office under the name of Fr. Sauter AG.[1] The group employs around 2300 people and generated sales of 401 million.


In 1910, the company was founded by Fritz Sauter in Grindelwald (CH), as a manufacturer of electrical time switches. The growing number of incoming orders led to an expansion and relocation of the operation to Basel. In 1920, the company was converted into a private limited company.

In 1912, Sauter brought its first product to the market in the form of a time-switch – an astronomical clock for switching city street lighting on and off. The lights were switched on and off in the evening and morning, at the seasonal hour for twilight.

In 1917, Sauter developed a boiler for the Basel power station, which was well received on the market. The company had already moved its workshop to Basel in 1916 because of its good relationship with the power station.

In 1935, Sauter took the step from time- or temperature-controlled activation of equipment to control technology, thus laying the foundation for its current main business.

In the early 1950s, Sauter started integrating electronics into the products. The product range comprised devices for controlling temperature, humidity and pressure.

In 1974, Sauter brought its first software-controlled building management system onto the market; in 1981, the first devices with microprocessors.

In 1984, Sauter Holding AG was founded to defend against a hostile takeover bid. The operational activities are consolidated under Fr. Sauter AG.

In 1997, the first Internet-based automation product, that enables the system to be controlled using a web browser, came onto the market.

Starting in 2000, Sauter expanded its activities into the service sector. Facility management became an integral part of its key business.

In 2002, Sauter began integrating the standardised BACnet communication protocol into the products.

In 2009, Sauter brought its Energy Management Solution (EMS) onto the market.

In 2012, the Sauter Vision Center software, a building management suite with a modular, scalable visualisation and management level, came onto the market.

In 2018, acquisition of WREN Ltd and Sirus Ireland.[2]

In 2019, launch of the new modulo 6 building automation system.[3] Since 2020, there is the new Smart Actuator, a valve and air damper actuator with integrated controller, IoT and cloud connection.[4]

Group structure[edit]

The Sauter Group includes 16 subsidiaries in Europe, joint ventures in China and the Middle East, and local agencies in other countries. Countries with Sauter subsidiaries: Switzerland, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, United Kingdom, Austria, Slovakia, Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Serbia. The portfolio includes the four specialist fields of Systems, Components, Services and Facility Management. The Facility Management business in Germany is managed by Sauter FM GmbH with headquarters in Augsburg, a 100-percent owned subsidiary of the German Sauter branch.

Products and services[edit]

Sauter produces hardware and software for regulation, control and building management systems for applications in the fields of heating, ventilation and air conditioning. The product range includes room sensors, transducers, thermostats, pressure switches, electrical actuators, pneumatic actuators, valves, mixing valves, and dampers. On the management level, Sauter develops software for building management, as well as systems and room automation stations for individual room control and room management. Development and production takes place at the factory in Basel.

The area of building services includes services such as contracting, maintenance and monitoring. An increasingly important mainstay are services in the field of energy-conscious, technical, infrastructural and commercial facility management.

Previous areas of activity[edit]

Boilers, electric cooking stoves[edit]

To operate on the French market, Sauter saw the need to set up a French production site. In 1923 Fritz Sauter and Godefroy Schlumberger[5] founded the Société pour l'exploitation des Procédés Sauter Sàrl in the Alsatian town of Saint-Louis. Sauter initially used the French production plant to assemble only boiler of the Cumulus[6] brand and storage heaters of the Primulus brand. Due to the Second World War the French government moved any industry close to the border further into the country, and the Procédés Sauter relocated to Claye-Souilly, thus also distancing itself from its Swiss partner. In 1948 Sauter sold its share of the Procédés Sauter to Continental et Garnier and, on 1 June 1948, it formed a new subsidiary, Sauter Appareils Automatiques SA, in Saint-Louis. While Continental et Garnier retained the Sauter brand for the household appliance sector, the new company busied itself with control technology.[7]

In 1972 Garnier was taken over by Schlumberger. Brandt SA gave the Sauter kitchen appliance brand[8][9] access to the Spanish Fagor Group, which filed for bankruptcy in November 2013. In April 2014 Fagor was partially taken over by the Algerian Groupe Cevital.

Electricity meters[edit]

In 1991 the control technology-related activities in France were divested into a new company, Sauter Regulation SA.[10] The activities that remained with Sauter Appareils Automatiques SA (development, production and sale of electricity meters for the French market) were sold to the Zellweger Luwa Group in 1992. These activities were transferred from Zellweger to the Deutsche Zählergesellschaft,[11] which closed the plant in 2007 after it had relocated to Mulhouse.[12]

Ozonation and control of water supply installations[edit]

In 1948 the company got involved with the control of water supply installations with a water reservoir in Les Brenets.[13] In 1955, in collaboration with the Compagnie des eaux et de l'ozone[14] the drinking water supply of the canton psychiatric hospital in Boudry[15] in Neuchâtel was upgraded. As a result, the ozonation of drinking water became a separate line of business. From 1972 onwards, Sauter ozone installations were also used to neutralise odours in the return air of purification plants. The ozonation business was sold to Christ Water Technology AG around 1980.

The remaining business for controlling water supply installations was sold to Rittmeyer AG in 1996.



  1. ^ [1] Online access to the commercial register entry of company no. CH-
  2. ^ "Geschichte von SAUTER". Retrieved 2019-06-03.
  3. ^ "history". 2019-06-03.
  4. ^ Susselin, Lucie (2020-01-28). "SAUTER Smart Actuator – mit IoT und Cloud zu «Predictive Maintenance»". (in German). Retrieved 2023-01-26.
  5. ^ See entry on
  6. ^ Procédés Sauter – Société Anonyme: Chauffe-eau „Cumulus“, 1929, PDF 4,19 MB, French; accessed on 10 October 2014
  7. ^ See Brückner p. 116-121
  8. ^ Entry on
  9. ^ "A propos de Sauter". Sauter électroménager. Retrieved 5 May 2016.
  10. ^ Société Anonyme (France), later changed to an SAS (Société par actions simplifiée)
  11. ^ Deutsche Zählergesellschaft Oranienburg mbH (31 March 2014). "Company History". Retrieved 5 May 2016.
  12. ^ "STEPPER ENERGIE FRANCE". Retrieved 5 May 2016.
  13. ^ See Brückner p. 105
  14. ^ "CIE DES EAUX OZONE PROCEDES M POTTO". Retrieved 5 May 2016.
  15. ^ See entry on Archived 2014-10-20 at the Wayback Machine


Christian Brückner, Markus Brückner: Aus eigener Kraft – Rückblick auf 100 Jahre Firmengeschichte der Fr. Sauter AG, Basel, Basel 2010, ISBN 3-9522350-9-1, online, in German (PDF; 5.0 MB)