Today, AGCO Feucht GmbH (formerly FELLA-Werke GmbH) is the European centre of excellence for green forage harvesting for global agricultural engineering company AGCO. Driven by passion, inspired by German engineering excellence and rooted in Franconian tradition, the company supplies the demanding forage harvesting sector of the global market with a comprehensive range of drum and disc mower units, tedders and rakes.
At the end of the First World War, the demand for agricultural machinery increased significantly in Germany. Industrialists from Munich took this opportunity to found "Bayerische Eggenfabrik AG" in Feucht near Nuremberg on 9th February 1918. By 1923, front carriages were being produced as well as harrows and, just a year later, ploughs were also added to the product range. The brand name FELLA, which comes from the Egyptian word "fellah", meaning "farmer", first appeared in the logo of the Bayerische Eggenfabrik in 1921. In 1931, the company was taken over by Epple & Buxmann from Augsburg and the product range developed more and more in the direction of harvesting technology. From that point on, grass mowers, tedders and hay and grain rakes also became part of the product portfolio. In 1932, the company began producing reaper-binders – a milestone in the company's history and a step on the road to becoming a harvesting machinery specialist. Despite the difficulties of the Second World War and the post-war period, the company continued to grow. In 1944, the AG became FELLA-Werke GmbH.
In 1953, the predecessor of today's conditioners first appeared on the market: The Fella PTO shaft tedder, which was awarded the "große Bronzene Preismünze" (great bronze medal) by the DLG (German Agricultural Association). The self-propelled "Jupiter" combine harvester, which appeared on the market in 1954, also met every farmer's needs at that time. A wide range of hay-making machinery rounded off the product range. In 1956, the 100,000th grass mower was produced. In the 1960s, tower silos and self-loading trailers were added to the product portfolio and by 1979 were produced in various different versions. Shredders of all types and sizes were also produced in Feucht in the 1960s and 1970s. Forage towers, mowers and fertiliser spreaders are just a few further examples of the wide range of products produced by FELLA Werke GmbH during these decades. Rakes, the latest product group of the machinery marketed by the company today, were added to the product range in 1968.
From 1980, the site in Feucht began to specialise in forage harvesting; the production of drum and disc mower units, tedders, rakes and silo block cutters became the company's core business. In the 1990s, the company then began to concentrate on the core competencies of construction, assembly and sales. In 1997, the site introduced a completely new concept: The four self-controlling factories. Following this concept, one foreman and one manager each are responsible for the employees and oversee the production in accordance with the instructions from the factory management. In 1999, FELLA received the International Best Factory Award for this concept. As a result, in 2002, FELLA invested in new buildings, such as a large assembly hall measuring 3200 m² and a modern administrative building with training room. A new spare parts and customer service centre was also opened in 2003.
In spring 2011, FELLA-Werke GmbH was 100% taken over by AGCO. After changing its name to AGCO Feucht GmbH in 2015, all machinery soon began to be sold under the three international Group brands Fendt, MF and Fella. The Feucht site is now AGCO's European centre of excellence for green forage harvesting and an integral component of the Full Line strategy of the global agricultural engineering company. The ground-breaking ceremony for a new factory unit in September 2018 and further investments amounting to several million euros are further important steps for the future of the site.
An overview of our history at a glance:
1918 Founding of "Bayerische Eggenfabrik AG" in Feucht
1921 The brand name FELLA is created, derived from the Egyptian word "fellah" (= farmer)
1923 Ploughs and front carriages are incorporated into the product range.
1932 Introduction of grass mowers, hay tedders, horse rakes and reaper-binders to the product portfolio
1953 FELLA brings its first conditioner with tine rotor to the market. It is awarded the "große Bronzene Preismünze" (great bronze medal) by the DLG (German Agricultural Association).
1954 With the Jupiter, FELLA brings an automatic, powerful combine harvester to the market.
1968 Introduction of rakes to the product portfolio
1980 Specialisation of products for green forage harvesting
1993 Concentration on the core competences of construction, assembly and sales
1997 The principle of the four "self-controlling factories" is introduced. Two years later, it is awarded the International Best Factory Award.
2004 Takeover by Argo; FELLA becomes a 100% subsidiary of Laverda.
2007 Argo and AGCO conclude a joint venture, each with a 50% share; FELLA becomes a part of both companies.
2011 100% takeover by AGCO: The Feucht site becomes AGCO's European centre of excellence for green forage harvesting.
2015 Name change to AGCO Feucht GmbH
2016 Multi-brand strategy: Green forage harvesting technology marketed under the three brands Fendt, Massey Ferguson and Fella
2018 Celebration of 100 years of agricultural engineering in Feucht