Tchibo History

Tchibo stands for a unique business model. In eight countries, Tchibo operates around 900 stores, over 24,300 retail depots, and national online stores. Through this multichannel distribution system, the company offers not only coffee and the single-serving Cafissimo and Qbo systems, but also the non-food ranges and services that change weekly, such as mobile communications. In 2022, Tchibo generated sales of 3.25 billion euros with 11,318 employees internationally. Tchibo is the roasted coffee market leader in Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic and Hungary and is one of the leading e-commerce

Founded in Hamburg in 1949, the family-owned company has received several awards for its sustainable business policy: in 2012, it won the Prize for Corporate Ethics and the Environmental Award for Logistics, and in 2013, the CSR Awards of the German government and the EU. In 2016, Tchibo was named Germany's most sustainable large company.

1949 - 1959


Max Herz, a Hamburg merchant by training, and his business partner Carl Tchiling lay the foundations of today's Tchibo Group. With their business idea of sending roasted coffee by post, they revolutionised the coffee market.


The Tchibo Magazine (TCM) is published monthly with the latest fashion tips, entertaining stories, recipes for the tight budget, smart patterns and horoscopes. The magazine, which was considered unique of its kind for many years, is enthusiastically received.


The Tchibo Gold Mocha is here! The Gold Mocha is fast becoming Germany's most drunk coffee.

Max Herz on the special preparation of the Gold Mocha: "Don't think, dear Tchibo friend, that it is so easy to create a rich and tasty blend over and over again like this, and only like this, and - to repeat it day after day."


The first Tchibo store in Hamburg opens its doors at Caffamacherreihe 10 and for the first time offers customers the opportunity to taste a cup before buying a packet of coffee.


There are already 77 Tchibo branches in Germany. As a result, a new one opens almost every week. Max Herz travels all over Germany with his wife Ingeburg to find top locations. By 1965, there are already well over 400 branches.

1960 - 1969


Mr. Tchibo: Wensley Ivan William Frederick Pithey makes his first television appearance for Tchibo. One of the longest collaborations with an advertising figure begins. Mr. Pithey, the coffee expert, travels to producer countries, inspects coffee plants, rides on coffee ships and advises customers in the shop. Mr. Pithey is in action until the early 1980s.


Tchibo opens Fresh Depots in bakeries and confectioneries. By 1971, there are already almost 2,900 depots. The introduction of the first mild coffee variety marks the beginning of a new era for coffee connoisseurs.


Max Herz, the founder, dies. His sons Günter and Michael continue to run the company.

1970 - 1979


Foundation of the Tchibo Coffee Service.


Tchibo complements the traditional coffee range and sells consumer goods without coffee in the branches for the first time. The best-sellers of the first hour are placemats and breakfast boards.

1980 - 1989


The "Feine Milde" variety takes first place in Tchibo roasted coffee range.


The Frische Depots are being extended to the grocery trade - from now on, Tchibo coffee and consumer goods are also available in many grocery stores.

Fine coffees have their own personality - just like good wine. From October 1987, Tchibo Private Coffee range offers top-quality coffees from selected coffee-growing countries. Each variety has its own distinctive taste.

1990 - 1999


Expansion into Central and Eastern Europe begins: Tchibo opens branches in Hungary, Slovakia and Czech Republic.


"A new world every week" - Tchibo surprises its customers every week with new consumer goods on a wide variety of topics.


Consumer goods and Tchibo coffee can now also be ordered by catalog.


Tchibo Holding AG acquires the Eduscho Group.

Tchibo enters the travel market. In 2007, around 225,000 travelers book their vacations with Tchibo.

Tchibo also uses the Internet as a new sales channel for the first time - all products can now be ordered online.

2000 - 2009


Tchibo is the largest coffee shop operator in Germany.

Tchibo opens Europe's largest high-bay warehouse in Bremen.

Customers can also order flowers via The shipment runs in cooperation with Blume 2000.


Tchibo mobil is founded and revolutionizes the mobile communications market.


The Cafissimo is launched on the market. The first capsule machine that can make espresso, caffè crema and filter coffee.


Tchibo launches a new marketing platform: innovative services. Whether distance learning, concert tickets or tradesmen's jobs - Tchibo regularly surprises customers with particularly fair terms and transparent offers in the services sector. Since 2008, these offers have been known as Tchibo Plus.

2010 - 2019


Tchibo launches into the social media world with various channels of its own - a Facebook fan page, a Twitter account, a Xing company page, a Google Plus page, a YouTube channel and a corporate blog, which wins several awards as the best corporate blog in subsequent years.


Tchibo wins the German government's CSR prize - Both a confirmation and an obligation: The German government honors Tchibo with its first CSR prize. We are honored for our exemplary business activities, which are comprehensively focused on sustainability and social responsibility.

Go-ahead for cross-channel: "Tchibo makes it easy!" Ordering, picking up, exchanging - networking the sales channels and linking the online and offline shopping worlds offers Tchibo customers an end-to-end shopping and service experience. All stores are equipped with iPads for on-site online ordering.


Leap to the top of the world: Tchibo is the world's third-largest supplier of organic cotton - another step on Tchibo path to 100% sustainable business. This is the conclusion reached by the non-profit organization Textile Exchange in its Organic Cotton Market Report.


World first Qbo: individual, connected, sustainable. Barista quality thanks to the patented PressBrew process, innovative milk technology, control via smartphone app and, since 2017, voice control via Alexa are the distinguishing features of the new capsule system.


Esperto Caffè", the first fully automatic coffee machine from Tchibo, quickly becomes a bestseller.

As of 2020


Fair lifestyle meets coffee enjoyment: launch of the Tchibo podcast "Fünf Tassen täglich" (Five cups a day)