Our company heritage

The history behind HellermannTyton

Paul Hellermann's legacy Paul Hellermann's legacy

Paul Hellermann was inspired by the tiny rubber tubes in bicycle valves

Wherever power flows along a wire or data is transferred along a fibre optic cable, a HellermannTyton product is never far away. Built on an inventive legacy that began in Germany in 1935, the company is now one of the leading global manufacturers and suppliers of products used to fasten, fix, connect, insulate, protect and identify electrical and data cables in buildings, in the ground, in machinery, and in vehicles.

HellermannTyton still sells products like the ones founding father Paul Hellermann invented to protect cable sheaths from damage. Inspired by the tiny rubber tubes in Woods/Dunlop type bicycle valves, he probably didn't imagine just how big his 1935 Hamburg start-up would grow when he started marketing his three-pronged pliers and chloroprene rubber sleeves.

Today, the HellermannTyton brand is synonymous with a comprehensive portfolio of high-quality products, cable management expertise and professional service to engineers and technicians around the world.


From the Hellermann Binding System to plastic cable ties

The Hellermann Binding System in advertising The Hellermann Binding System in advertising

The Hellermann Binding System was the best friend of early cable harness makers

Electrical wiring in the early 1930s was encased with rubber and bound with cotton thread. Paul Hellermann (1886–1958) devised an ingenious system for easily stretching rubber sleeves over the cable sheaths to prevent the ends from fraying.

Paul Hellermann GmbH was founded in 1935 in Hamburg. The company manufactured and sold three-pronged pliers and chloroprene rubber sleeves and grommets in various sizes.

In 1938, Hellermann extended his business to the UK in a joint venture with Jack Bowthorpe (1905–1978). As wiring became increasingly complex, Hellermann Electric Ltd. and a string of Bowthorpe Hellermann companies were ideally placed to serve the wiring needs of the booming post-war aerospace, automotive and electrical industries. The company was one of the first to offer a numeric marking system on coloured cable sleeves.

Before his death in 1958, Hellermann sold his original company and shares in the British partnership to Bowthorpe, under whose leadership the company was quick to adopt plastic injection moulding and extrusion technology. It was precisely the right time to capitalise on the advent of the plastic cable tie.


1935 Paul Hellermann GmbH established on 14 December 1935, Kirchenallee 57 in Hamburg (Germany).
1936 Hellermann Binding System patented.
1937 Hellermann three-pronged pliers patented.
1938 Hellermann Electric Ltd. established, Purley Way, Croydon (UK).
1940 Bowthorpe-Hellermann companies relocated to Oxford (UK) for duration of the war; German site moved to Moorende 6/8 in Hamburg.
1942 First rubber cable markers for aircraft manufactured in Oxford.
1944 Bomb damage forced German factory to relocate to Große Bleichen 23 in Hamburg.
1948 Bowthorpe Holding companies moved to a purpose-built site, Gatwick Road, Crawley (UK).
1950 Twinlay Cable Marker, sleeve overlaid with transparent plastic film, introduced; German business relocated to Hegestraße 40 in Hamburg.
1952 Cheltenham Plastics acquired and extrusion business amalgamated with Hellermann Electric in Crawley (UK) as Hellermann Ltd.; plastic P-Clip range expanded; cable strapping and studs launched.
1955 Business established in Canada.
1957 Paul Hellermann sold his business and stakes in Hellermann Electric to Jack Bowthorpe.
1958 Insuloid Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (acquired 6 years later) manufactured first nylon cable ties in the UK.



Cable ties take off and the Tyton System is a runaway success

Kabelrap, nylon cable ties and the Tyton System Kabelrap, nylon cable ties and the Tyton System

Tyton and Kabelrap were invented to fulfil industrial demand for scalable cable tying systems

At the start of the 1960s, building on a decade of expertise dipping plastics, the Bowthorpe Hellermann companies were quick to adopt plastic injection moulding technology. The Insuloid Manufacturing Company from Manchester – one of the UK’s first specialised manufacturers of cable ties made from thermoplastic (polyamide 6.6, or ‘nylon’) – was acquired and amalgamated into Hellermann Ltd. in 1964. The Insulok LK range of cable ties became the foundation of the T-Series ties, still sold by HellermannTyton today.

Meanwhile, the German side of the electrical business headed by chief engineer Heinrich Kabel continued to build on Paul Hellermann’s inventive cable management legacy. This work culminated in the 1965 launch of the highly successful ‘Tyton’ tool – the first continuous strap binding system. The derivative ‘Kabelrap’ cable tie and KR application tool that followed two years later are still sold today.

The widespread international acclaim earned by Tyton and Kabelrap was reflected in the globe added to the modernised company logo from 1967.

When sister companies were established in the United States in 1969 and in Japan in 1970 these businesses were registered under the name Tyton.


1960 Hellermann in Germany moved to a purpose-built factory in Pinneberg outside Hamburg.
1961 Businesses established in France and Australia.
1963 Improved three-pronged pliers patented.
1964 Insuloid Manufacturing Co. Ltd. (est. 1933) acquired and amalgamated in Manchester (UK); Insulok cable binding clips patented − the foundation of our T-Series cable ties.
1965 Tyton System, continuous strap cable binding launched.
1966 Business established in South Africa; Insultite Helashrink (moldanised heat shrink shapes) launched; first cable ties with outside-serration introduced.
1967 Kabelrap tool and KR- Series launched.
1969 Tyton Corporation of America established in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (USA); first adhesive cable tie mount patented.
1970 Tyton Company of Japan established in Tokyo and Hellermann do Brasil Industria e Comercio Ltda established in São Paulo (Brazil).
1978 Hellermann Electric moved to new, purpose-built facility in Plymouth (UK).
1979 Production facilities extended at Pinneberg (Germany).



Cable management demand sparks international expansion

Global cable management expertise Global cable management expertise

Fastening, fixing and marker expertise was the foundation for success in all industries around the world

Demand for more and more specialised cable harness components increased dramatically with technological advances in aircraft, vehicles, industrial plant and telecommunications.

The company began adding customised product development and highly-skilled thermoplastics engineering to its offering in key markets. It also embarked on an unprecedented phase of international growth. By the end of the 1990s, Hellermann had established local representation in 27 countries and extended its manufacturing capabilities to all global regions. 


1980 Business acquired in Norway.
1981 Business established in Singapore. 
1982 Warehouse added to six manufacturing operations in Manchester (UK); business established in Sweden.
1986 Production facilities opened in Hyogo (Japan).
1987 Plastic tube extrusion commenced in Plymouth (UK).
1988 Business established in Finland.
1990 Electric AutoTool and pneumatic TytonTool automatic cable tie application tools launched.
1991 First specialised cable mounting bracket produced for automotive customers.
1992 Production facilities in Trappes (France) opened.
1994 Business established in Mexico.
1995 Business established in Italy; first thermal transfer label system and TT1000 printer launched.
1996 Business established in Hong Kong.
1997 Business established in China with purpose-built production facilities opened in Wuxi; business also established in The Philippines and Thailand and acquired in Austria CEE; Autotool 2000 launched.
1998 Business acquired in Argentina and in Spain/Portugal; TipTags launched.
1999 Worldwide name changed to HellermannTyton (27 countries at this time); new purpose-built production facilities opened in Manchester (UK).



Steady growth, consolidation and focus on key industries

Custom thermoplastic components and quality cable management products Custom thermoplastic components and quality cable management products

The HellermannTyton brand is synonymous with quality cable management products and service

The new millennium commenced with the introduction of the harmonised company name “HellermannTyton” for all business units around the world.

A strong reputation as a manufacturer and supplier of quality cable management products and success as a development partner for custom thermoplastic components has enabled HellermannTyton to consistently outperform baseline economic growth year-on-year. Manufacturing capacity has been successively increased in step with customer demand in all global regions.

The company floated on the London Stock Exchange in March 2013. Just over two years later, Delphi Automotive Systems PLC made a successful bid to purchase the company. HellermannTyton was subsequently incorporated into the Delphi Electrical/Electronic Architecture division in December 2015.

Since the parent company’s realignment as Aptiv PLC in December 2017, HellermannTyton is now part of the Signal and Power Solutions division developing cable assemblies for advanced vehicle systems but continues to operate under its own brand.

Besides the automotive sector, HellermannTyton is a key supplier of cable management products to customers in all other industries, especially aerospace, rail, white goods, renewable energy and electrical installation.


2000 HellermannTyton Data UK acquired; business established in Denmark; purpose-built production facilities opened in Tornesch (Germany); new production facilities opened in Johannesburg (South Africa); detectable plastic MCT cable ties launched for food industry.
2001 Production plant capacity doubled in Wuxi (China); specialised EdgeClip fixing products launched.
2002 Business established in South Korea; new production facilities opened in Jundiaí (Brazil).
2003 Pre-terminated RapidNet System products for data centres launched.
2004 ATS3080 waste-free, automatic bundling system launched.
2005 Business established in The Netherlands and Belgium
2006 Departure from Spirent PLC (prev. Bowthorpe Holdings) and acquisition by Doughty Hanson & Co. (UK).
2007 Production plant in Wuxi (China) extended.
2008 Business established in Poland, Russia and India.
2011 New production facilities opened in Plymouth (UK).
2012 Logistics centre opened in Wuxi (China).
2013 Flotation on the London Stock Exchange; additional manufacturing facilities opened in Milwaukee (USA); EVO7 manual cable tie gun launched.
2014 Office established in United Arab Emirates; process-reliable Autotool 2000CPK launched.
2015 Incorporation into Delphi Automotive Systems PLC (now Aptiv PLC); production facility opened in Songdo (Republic of Korea).
2016 Production facility in Słupca (Poland) opened; new distribution centre opened in Cannock (UK); office established in Turkey.
2017 Brand new HellermannTyton Data production facility opened in Northampton (UK); production facility opened in Monterrey (Mexico); HellermannTyton ACADEMY introduced globally; Ratchet P-Clamp and RFID cable ties and accessories launched.
2018 First ever company-wide global brand campaign MADE FOR REAL launched.
2019 Tanger Automotive City (TAC) production facility opened in La Ville Nouvelle Cherafate (Morocco).