In the middle of the 19th century homoeopathic preparations were in great demand. The preparations of those days were manufactured by pharmacists which varied in quality, sometimes even of questionable quality. A German pharmadicines. His work and commitment have been a binding legacy for Schwabe Group up to the present day. In 1866, two years after his qualification as a pharmacist, he founded his own company “Homöopatische Centralofficin Dr. Willmar Schwabe” (Central Homoeopathic Dispensary Dr. Willmar Schwabe).
The foundation of this company was to become a milestone in medical history. He developed analytical methods and defined pharmaceutical technical processes for homoeopathic drug materials. He introduced quality controls and organised the cultivation of medical plants. In accordance with his stringent quality criteria, homoeopathic preparations were produced. More than 700 regional dispensaries distributed throughout Germany, Europe and all over the world were added to the original “Centralofficin” in Leipzig. Having inaugurated the first homoeopathic policlinic in Leipzig, Schwabe started his activities in the fields of health and social politics. In 1866 he founded a publishing house specialising in literature for both the medical profession and the public.
In 1872, he produced the standard work for homoeopathic pharmaceuticals – the “Pharmacopoea Homoeopathica Polyglottica”, which gave minutely detailed instructions on the production of homoeopathic medicines. It was another milestone in homoeopathy. Soon, Schwabe´s work gained world-wide recognition and was translated into many languages. In 1934, a new edition was published as the official “Deutsches Homöopatisches Arzneibuch” (German Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia), which is now incorporated into the homoeopathic section of the official German Pharmacopoeia.
Through out his life, the main aim of Dr. Willmar Schwabe was to provide high quality homoeopathic medicines by standardising the industrial production with modern analytical technologies as well as strictly adhering to the rules laid down by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, the founder of homoeopathy. To quote Dr. Willmar Schwabe: “I have founded an institution of my own which examines every homoeopathic remedy for genuineness and purity and which sets standards for its quantity, the content, effectiveness and characteristics of the substances”.
With each following generation, Schwabe group continued to grow. The values of the founder, reliability, innovation, quality and responsibility, still guide the company’s evolution. These are the principles on which our success is based.
The efficacy and safety profile of natural products were recognised from time immemorial. With the availability of standardised products from the newly established Dr. Willmar Schwabe’s Central Homoeopathic Dispensary and his publication of Pharmacopoeia Homoeopathica Polyglotta, Schwabe´s work gained world-wide recognition. As stated elsewhere in the website Pharmacopoeia Homoeopathica Polyglotta was translated into many languages. In 1934, a new edition was published as the official “Deutsches Homöopatisches Arzneibuch” (German Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia), which is now incorporated into the homoeopathic section of the official German Pharmacopoeia.
In 1898, the first company abroad was founded in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The founder’s successor Dr. Willmar Schwabe II had taken over the company management in 1917. In the year 1926, the organisation had moved to a new premise in Leipzig. Then in 1935 the company management had passed to Dr. Willmar Schwabe III and Dr. Wolfgang Schwabe. In 1946, the headquarters of Schwabe group was relocated from Leipzig to Karlsruhe.
Significant increase for the demand of homoeopathic products in middle of the 20th century from all over the world had lead to the creation of a separate division for homoeopathic products. So in 1961, the Deutsche Homöopathie-Union (DHU) was founded to handle manufacturing and distribution of homoeopathic medicines, while the Schwabe parent company continued to focus all its research and development activities on herbal products. In 1976, Dr. Klaus-Peter Schwabe became the managing director and Dr. Wolf-Dietrich Schwabe became in 1977. From 1980 onwards, numerous takeovers, acquisitions and joint ventures have taken place all over the world, which are given under ‘Acquisitions’.
Today, the fourth generation still continues the family traditions of the company.