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Our History

Evolution driven by innovation

From humble beginnings as a grain inspection house on the docks of 1870’s Rouen to the world-leading testing, inspection and certification company of today. The evolution of SGS is driven by innovation, expertise and an ambition to enable a better, safer and more interconnected world.

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Our History


Our company is founded in Rouen, France, by Henri Goldstuck who, having seen the opportunities at one of the country’s largest ports, begins to inspect French grain shipments.



Business takes off and we open new offices in France’s three largest ports: Le Havre, Dunkirk and Marseille.



Our headquarters moves from Paris to Geneva, Switzerland.



In 1919 we adopt the name Société Générale de Surveillance (SGS).



We diversify and begin our Industrial Services business inspecting industrial machines and goods.



Expanding further, we establish services for the oil, gas & chemical sector, minerals industries, and governments and institutions.



In the 70s we begin providing environmental consultancy and remediation services to customers in the oil and gas sector.



SGS goes public. Less than four years later, our sales reach an impressive CHF 1.5 billion.



Booming economies in Asia fuel our growth and we expand our business to China.



Today, we operate across a wide variety of industry sectors with more than 99,600 employees across 2,600 offices and laboratories, and are active in nearly every country in the world.

  • SGS Germany GmbH

Heidenkampsweg 99,

20097, Hamburg, Germany