30 Years Under the Spell of Infrared

How an efficient, medium-sized Dresden high-tech company developed from one idea.

Infrared technology has exclusive and sometimes mysterious properties because it uses electromagnetic radiation, an invisible, but at the same time, omnipresent force. It can be used, for example, to measure temperatures and gas concentrations, for early fire detection and to track down energy losses. In 1991, a few graduates led by two young men, fascinated by this technology during their studies and PhD research work at the Technical University of Dresden, turned it into a lifelong passion and started InfraTec GmbH Infrarotsensorik und Messtechnik.´

Driven by the idea of turning their fascination of infrared technology into the basis of a business venture and with great patience, they succeeded in developing their company into a globally recognised manufacturer in the infrared technology sector within 30 years. The current managing directors, Dr.-Ing. Matthias Krausz and Dr.-Ing. Matthias Heinze faced a lot of challenges when they founded the company. The greatest challenge was the fact that there were initially no products ready for serial production, no manufacturing and testing equipment installed and no customers. The procurement of start-up capital for the GmbH was another task to be tackled. “But we still had excellent qualifications, we were unaware of the stereotype 'German Angst' and were able to get to grips with the technology ourselves. And primarily, we had the vision of being able to do everything better than our existing competitors,” according to Dr. Matthias Heinze, managing director and head of the sensor technology division.

30 years of the highest level of infrared technology
From our very first “production laboratory” in the basement of the erstwhile kindergarten of the TU Dresden up to the inauguration of the first “genuine” clean room area for production, the path we have taken has been targeted, but not always straightforward or easy. “Thirty exciting years have passed by in a flash, during which our creative tenacity has always been matched with the necessary piece of good luck. We would like to express our greatest thanks to all of our dedicated and motivated staff who form the backbone of InfraTec as well as to all customers and partners who have always accompanied us with their confidence and goodwill, ”commented Dr. Matthias Krausz, managing director and head of the infrared measurement technology division.

While many companies change hands after successfully establishing themselves on the market or are bought up by larger companies, InfraTec has rejected numerous offers in this direction. "We also see the future opportunities to exploit the inherent strengths of our ownership structure to retain and expand our noticeable share of the world market," confirmed Dr. Matthias Heinze. InfraTec is a reliable partner for customers, employees, suppliers and other market players. The concepts of innovation and the quality of the products are the keys to sustainable corporate development.

“Made in Dresden” with conviction
The entire production of InfraTec takes place at the headquarters in Dresden. Outsourcing production to other countries has played no part to the present day. "Quite the contrary!", according to Dr. Matthias Krausz. “Entrepreneurial decisions have always been characterised by keeping the core of value creation on the spot here in Dresden. This will continue to be the case if the social framework conditions for us as a medium-sized company in Germany do not significantly deteriorate. ”What’s more, half of our employees are graduates and our core industrial team all have a skilled worker qualification. This grown expertise cannot be outweighed by the lower energy and media costs or tax advantages abroad," said Dr. Matthias Heinze. This is the reason why InfraTec will continue to develop, manufacture and sell in its production facilities at the “TechnologieZentrumDresden”.

A glance into the "crystal ball"
A glance into the future has always been of fundamental importance to the InfraTec managing directors. Who do we want to be? Where do we want to go? Dr. Matthias Krausz has a clear answer: “We will continue to be the customeroriented and family-characterised company that focuses on technology and quality leadership in niche areas. The consistent continuation of the path we have taken so far will determine our actions in the next decade in spite of the rapid global development in the technical and economic conditions."

Furthermore, the challenge of the generational shift is imminent. "We, the owners, are getting on in years and are now measured not only by what we do every day, but also by how we get the next generation of owners and managers at InfraTec to have an optimum impact," said Dr. Matthias Heinze on the topic of corporate succession.

The components business and the business with cameras and complete systems will also be continued side by side. Furthermore, InfraTec would like to exceed previous functional limits as long as new products are compatible with the know-how and production technologies. The planning for an expansion of the company's own property on the grounds of the TechnologieZentrumDresden, as a prerequisite for future growth, has already begun.

Further details of our history