Company History

Laves-Arzneimittel GmbH celebrates its 100th anniversary. With a conscious mix of traditional core values, modern methods and technology in the service of naturopathy, every day the approximately 20 employees of the family business newly lay the foundations for the future – every day for human health.

After long illness, Hans-Georg Laves dies. His three sons take over the management in the fourth generation of the family and face the challenges of a medium-sized pharmaceutical company in our time.

Practical experience, gained by the staff of Lecinwerk already at the beginning of the last century, as well as by the employees of Laves-Arzneimittel GmbH over decades, has been confirmed by modern molecular biology and genetics. This is especially true for the physiology of the bacterium E. coli.

As part of the development of the Single European Market and the progressing globalization, particularly in the pharmaceutical industry, and [to meet]  highest hygiene standards (GMP), a new production facility is opened in the Canton of Lucerne in Switzerland.

The introduction of the German Health Care Structure Act compels Laves-Arzneimittel GmbH to focus on the most important products that deal with diseases of the intestinal, oral and pharyngeal mucosa.
A large part of the production program results from exploration and development of its proprietary E. coli bacteria strain.

The headquarters was moved to Empelde close to Hanover to meet the requirements of modern pharmaceutical production.

The difficult times got noticeably better. Exports to the Far East increased (Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea and Cambodia), a field service was established, and other products were purchased and developed.

In 1969, the pharmacist Hans-Georg Laves acquired the company. Due to the very difficult business succession from Dr. Wolfgang Laves to Mr. Hans-Georg Laves, only a consistent policy of downsizing could save the family business.

On June 21st, 1958, Laves-Arzneimittel GmbH celebrates its 50th anniversary. Both the congratulations of the employees and the speech by Dr. Wolfgang Laves illustrate the difficulties of these times.

A fresh setback:
As a result of the political division of Germany, the branch in Dresden has to be closed.
The plant operates at full capacity, but it is not possible to fulfil the entire production program, nor to meet the demands even approximately.

After the war, currency reform and loss of foreign subsidiaries, the company moved back from Neustadt into the Hildesheimer Straße in Hanover.

The heavy bombing of Hanover in September and October 1943 destroys the plants in the Hildes-heimer Straße and the Köblinger Straße almost completely. In Neustadt am Rbge, the facilities are rebuilt. The earlier market position was regained only to a very limited extent.

Prof. Dr. Ernst Laves dies on October 01st, 1927, in a traffic accident. His son, Dr. Wolfgang Laves, aged 26, takes over his work. Dr. Laves recognizes already at that time an ever more penetrating biological approach to medical science. After 1927, W. Laves could expand production by incorporation of a bacteriological department. The practical evaluations lead to the bacterial products coli antigen (later Colibiogen®) and Colivit.

The company already has a workforce of 20 employees. Since no authorization to build own distilla-tion facilities is granted, the company relocates to the site of the former town brewery in the Hildesheimer Straße 173 A. The product range is expanded.

The outbreak of World War I in 1914 puts an end to the rapid development of the work on: The im-port of Chinese egg-white failed, and there was a lack of bottles to bottle Lecin. Under the constraints of the war situation, a new functional form for the products was found: the tablet.

On June 26th, 1908, Prof. Dr. Ernst Laves, head of the dispensary of the North City Hospital in Hanover, founds the company, starting commercial-scale production of Lecin.