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Forbo is a leading producer of floor coverings, building and construction adhesives, as well as power transmission and conveyor belt solutions.

90 years and beyond

From 1928 to the present day and beyond – our experience of business and entrepreneurship has made Forbo what it is today.

Our activities around the globe bring us closer to our markets and our customers. The dialog with you enables us to think ahead and anticipate strategic opportunities. Forbo is a company that attaches considerable importance to continuous progress.

Archive photograph of Forbo employees stacking linoleum rolls.

Milestones in our company's history


Three linoleum manufacturers – German, Swedish and Swiss – form the Continentale Linoleum Union.

Share (1928) of the Continentale Linoleum Union, the foundation stone for today's Forbo Group.

1929 – 1930

Two further manufacturing sites join the Continentale Linoleum Union – Sarlino in France and the netherlandsche Linoleumfabriek in the Netherlands.

Krommenie 1929

1950 – 1971

Diversification into related products such as carpets and vinyl flooring.

Forbo Messeauftritt Archivaufnahme.

1973 - 1974

Adhesives activities hived off from linoleum business to be developed independently. Continentale Linoleum Union is renamed Forbo to reflect the wider portfolio of activities.

Old Forbo Logo in orange, 1973.

1975 – 1994

Forbo evolves into a worldwide group operating on five continents: acquisition of the Scottish Nairn linoleum manufacturing site in Kirkcaldy in 1985; diversification into wall-coverings and high-pressure laminates.

Logo Nairns 1975

1994 – 1998

Acquisition of Siegling, a global manufacturer, specializing in process and conveyor belt systems.

Divestment of wall-coverings and laminates activities.

Ernst Siegling, the founder of the Siegling Group, today Forbo  Movement Systems division - provider of high-quality conveyor and power transmission belts.

2000 – 2001

New strategy focusing on four divisions: Linoleum, Vinyl, Belting and Adhesives. Divestment of industrial activities, including extruded profiles, decorative products and coated textiles.

Carpet business spun off in management buyout. A series of minor acquisitions to strengthen Adhesives business.

2000 – 2003

Adhesives gains world stature by acquiring Swift, operating worldwide from the USA, Europe and Asia. Belting business expands in Great Britain. Linoleum and Vinyl merged to create Forbo Flooring. Now three strategic businesses: Flooring, Adhesives and Belting.

Overview of Forbo umbrella brand strategy with Flooring, Adhesives and Belting.

2004 – 2006

Strategic focus on three core divisions reaffirmed. Restructuring and measures to raise profitability.

Acquisition of Chinese adhesives manufacturer specialized in hot-melt and water-based adhesives.

Forbo employees in the production of hot melt adhesives.


New branding and growth strategy; three core divisions – flooring, adhesives and belting – renamed Flooring Systems, Bonding Systems and Movement Systems, operating under the Forbo brand with an integrated business strategy.


Forbo acquires the lightweight PVC conveyor belting business from Fenner Dunlop (Charlotte) Inc. North America as a further step to strengthen its Movement Systems division.

Acquisition of Bonar Floors, a major European flooring manufacturer in the contract flooring sector. With this, Flooring Systems strengthens its leading position as a systems provider of resilient flooring solutions in the commercial market.

Flotex, the washable textile floor covering, in tile format in a kindergarten. A product line that has been part of the Forbo  product portfolio since the acquisition of Bonar Floors in 2008.


Focus on leading market positions through the sale of the industrial adhesives activity, including synthetic polymers, which belonged to the Bonding Systems division.

Continued development of building and construction adhesives activity by running it as an independent unit in the Flooring Systems division.

Brand overview 2012 with the divisions Forbo Flooring Systems und Forbo Movement Systems.

2012 – 2023

Some smaller local acquisitions in Europe, North America and Asia/Pacific.

Focused development and expansion of growth markets.