Timeline 1902 - 1969

A special milestone of the first 100 years has already passed in 2002. Even though this happened a while ago, it seemed right to write a history of the company for the future generations. This timeline tells the story of the most important facts about this family-run-company that was founded bij F.J.A.M van der Ven in 1902.

1902 F.J.A.M.  van der Ven starts to develop an interest in Magnesite and orders a trail consignment of 50 tons in Greece (from the Isle of Euboea).Van der Ven processes the Magnesite via Koolbergen grinders (who also imports Magnesite).The Rosenboom family also starts trading Magnesite. He owns a grinding company in the mill ‘De Hoop’ (The Hope).

1910 Van der Ven en Koolbergen start to cooperate under the name of MagnesiteExploitatie Maatschappij (Magnesite Exploitation Company, or MEM).

1913 Around this time the production reached approximately 7,200 tons.

1914 At the start of the First World War, trade slowly comes to a standstill. The grinding company is sold to avoid liquidation.

1920 Trade begins to flourish again and the company starts to cooperate with stone grinder Rosenboom.

1925 The cooperation with Rosenboom leads to the foundation of a new company under the name of NV Magnesiet en Amaril Fabrieken, or MAF (previously “Rosenboom en co.”). MAF searches to cooperate internationally with mine owners. Eventually, it is not considered to invest in mines, but an agreement is made with a collaboration of suppliers: the Magnesite Syndicate.

1927 MEM and MAF merge and take over Fa. Rosenboom. Van der Ven buys Koolbergen’s MEM-stocks and with that, all trade in The Netherlands is in the hands of the MAF.

1930 Production reaches 9,000 tons. 

1932 There is a big fire in the factory. Luckily, no persons are injured, but the financial loss is substantional.

1938 MAF starts to concentrate on a new market and forms a new Chemistry-department (HAFA).

1939 Because of the beginning of the war the company suffers from declining international relations, and as a result, the production nearly stops. Thanks to great efforts, it remains possible to keep their personnel during the hard years of occupation. Blast furnace slag is grinded in order to keep the production going.

1945 The founder of the company F.J.A.M. van der Ven dies.

1950 After the war, the company flourishes enormously. The production will reach 25,000 tons. A succesful international meeting is organized and MAF receives recognition from companies all over the world.

1952 The 50th anniversary year is celebrated greatly.

1955 Reluctantly, the company has to indulge in tighter cooperation with the mines. In fact that the company obtains the sales right of the Grecian mine of Valtazanos is a good example of this. However this required a great investment on the part of the MAF.

1956 Ewald van der Ven comes into service of the company. He will focus first and foremost on a new product: Feldspar.New possibilities come to light for the application of Sinter Magnesite. However, this will not lead to participation of the production of this in the mine in Valtazanos. The risk is just too high according to the concerned family stock holders.

1958 MAF takes over Mineraal Maalwerk in Amsterdam and all the grinding activities are now concentrated in the new Lt.: de BV Nederlandse Erts en Mineraal-bewerking (Dutch company for the processing of ore and minerals, or: NEM). Later on, NEM will come to play an important role in paid grinding within MAF.1959A new Norwegian procedure ‘Magnefit’ enables the deposit of cellulose, which leads to a rising demand for Caustic Magnesite. A new market opens itself for MAF.

1960 The Feldspar-department gets a new great competitor in the field of Nephiline-Cyanite. Eventually, this product will come to supplant Feldpsar. MAF takes over the company Heyne-Vis. In due course liquidation follows.

1962 Renewed overtures are made towards several mine owners. Again, this is done somewhat reluctantly because great investments are always difficult subjects for the stock holders.

1963 Together with the Greek and the English the Magnesite Trust Company (MTC) is erected. MAF eventually takes over a share of 56%. The limited partnership MAF becomes a public limited liability company.

1965 Because of the same reason -being close to resources- the company founds, together with the Rheinish Westfalische Kalkwerke: ‘Karbonat Madin’. Magnesite would also be used in the ‘Magnefit’-procedure. Robbert van der Ven starts to work for MAF Ltd.. He will mainly focus on the MTC-activities.

1966 Soon, it becomes clear that MTC is not profitable. Liquidation is inevitable. The mines in Turkey also form a problem since they costs are higher than the income. It is decided that they should be disposed off. Ewald van der Ven is appointed as co-director. The annual reports say the following on the subject: “His (Ewalds) activities and insight, which forms the basis of the reason why he was offered this position, justify the expactancy of a succesful fulfilment of this important position. May he be appreciated in the right way for his enthusiasm and inventive activities and his insights that are based on experience”.

1967 The association for Chemical Products Ltd.. LITHOS is taken over. For this takeover, no liquid resources are needed since the balance sheet equals the price that has to be paid for the takeover. Later, LITHOS will grow and become one of the most important factors when it concerns the turnover of MAF.

1968 The Feldspar-department is closed.F.J.H.M. van der Ven retires after 45 years in the company. He stays active as supervisory director so the company can still benefit from is great expertise.

1969 This is the year of the ‘ready-made’ product NEMIX. NEMIX is a mixture that consists of Magnesite, filling and colour-additions and forms the basis for floors. Very soon, this product became popular and generates great turnover. However, after the initial success, complains were made because of the occurence of cracks and accumulations. As a result, NEMIX floors were taken out of the market. The Mineraal Maalwerk in Amsterdam is sold to Norwegion Talc in Norway.MAF bought premises off his neighbour Kreber in Vlaardingen. From this moment on, all activities of MAF, NEM and LITHOS were centralised in Vlaardingen.