A Brief History
Pilot Tools was founded on 1 September 1939. The company commenced with the manufacture of tungsten carbide tipped tooling for the mining and metal cutting industries. Carbide blanks were imported from Europe.
Started purchasing a portion of our tungsten carbide blank requirements from a South African manufacturer, Powder Industries (Pty) Ltd. Purchases a 25% interest in Powder Industries.
Pilot Tools purchased the remaining 75% interest in Powder Industries. The Powder Industries hard metals factory is now a 100% owned subsidiary of the Pilot Tools Group.
A new democratic South Africa emerged. Sanctions were lifted and South Africa re-entered the international community. Pilot Tools became a global supplier of tungsten carbide blanks to O.E.M.s in the mining and metal cutting industries.
Extensive R&D into materials technology. Focus on metal cutting product development. Partnered with leading European thin-film coating specialists.
The Pilot Tools’ designed P-Shank coal tool, was patented. We became a leading supplier of tungsten carbide tipped tooling to the mining and engineering industries.
Gained recognition as a leading manufacturer of tungsten carbide brazed tooling for lathes.
World economic sanctions were imposed on South Africa, restricting access to capital equipment and international trade. This forced the group to diversify its product offering and focus sales efforts within South Africa. We partnered with Huddy Diamond (Pty) Ltd and introduced the taper bit for hard rock mining into the South African market.
Streamlining and re-focusing of the Pilot Tools
Group into two business units:
- Mining & Construction
- Metal Cutting
Launch of e-commerce European sales channel for metal cutting products.