Family Business

Felt-Tipped Feud at Faber-Castell

  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Family-owned Faber-Castell is one of Germany’s oldest industrial firms and says it’s the world’s biggest maker of lead and color pencils.

  • Facts


    • Faber-Castell, owned by the aristocratic family of that name, has just appointed the first chief executive from outside the family in its more than 300-year history.
    • The appointment of Swiss manager Daniel Rogger ends a power struggle within the family following the death of the former CEO, Count Anton-Wolfgang von Faber-Castell, in January 2016 aged 74.
    • Faber-Castell employs 7,500 people worldwide and had sales of €630 million last year. It’s a leading global brand in the pencil, luxury pen and painting kits markets.
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coloured pencils

Faber-Castell, one of Germany’s oldest industrial firms, has resolved a management crisis by appointing its first ever managing director from outside the aristocratic family that owns the business.

Daniel Rogger, 49, who has years of experience running luxury brands in his native Switzerland and other countries, will start work on June 1, ending an 18-month leadership vacuum at the company following the death of the last CEO, Count Anton-Wolfgang von Faber-Castell, in January 2016, aged 74.

As is so often the case in family-run businesses, the death triggered a power struggle among the heirs as the count’s first-born son, 36-year-old Charles, tried and failed to take over the company, which was established in 1761 and says it’s the world biggest maker of wooden pencils.

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