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Company’s history of Michael Priestoph GmbH

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In 1969 Mr. Michael Priestoph founded the company with the same name − MICHAEL PRIESTOPH − in Hamburg. His activities were the intermediary of nuts and tinned products. He made already experiences at the firms EDEKA and GEDELAG in Berlin (at the so called Berlin stock pile. Unperishable goods were stored here e.g. dried fruit, nuts and also tinned food for the Berlin population in order to withstand a possible blockade by the former Soviet Union) and also at the company of GECK & RINNEBERG.

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Since 1970 Michael Priestoph specialized in dried fruit (e.g. apricots and figs) from Turkey. His main attention was on the Smyrna sultanas. Within a few years he ascertained, that this fruit became very popular in Germany and from there on had the biggest share of the German sultana imports.

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The company MICHAEL PRIESTOPH flourished and increased from 2 − 4 employees. When Greece entered 1981 EU, the company had a set back, as on account of the introduction of a minimum purchase price the imports of Smyrna sultanas from Turkey became more expensive and the business decreased rapidly. Michael Priestoph looked for new countries of origin and came across at the time emerging Iran. From the sultanas he quickly traced a way to pistachios. From previous transactions he new the unripe green pistachio kernels already from Sicily and Turkey. He imported these Iranian green pistachio kernels to Europe.

End of the eighties of last century the technical progress changed the business once more. Easier phone and fax communication facilitated the trade very much, so that the classic agent lost more of his importance.
The solution was to offer more services. Besides the sheer intermediary the firm Michael Priestoph took also care of the settlement of consignments, meaning storage, quality control, sales and survey of handling payments of the goods in question. (Consignments are goods which were sent by the sellers of various countries of origin to Michael Priestoph – free of payment. He then sold these goods on behalf of the sellers and arranged the settlement afterwards).
The development of these services was based mainly on the enormous trust of the foreign exporters in the company MICHAEL PRIESTOPH.

His son, Andreas Priestoph, entered the company in 1993. Father and son continued together the previous taken path of classic intermediaries and modern services. The range of products increased by Tunesian dates, pears and prunes from South America, Pakistani pinenut kernels as well as by sultanas from all over the world.

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When his daughter Kathrin entered the company in 1996 already 8 employees worked in the office as well as one apprentice. In 2002 Mr. Michael Priestoph transferred the firm to his son Andreas, who then changed the company’s name to MICHAEL PRIESTOPH GMBH.

The founder Michael Priestoph slowly withdrew from the active business and worked as an important consultant nearly every day until his death in 2011.

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The team of Michael Priestoph GmbH, October 2010

After the company was situated at the whole sale market in the centre of Hamburg for nearly 40 years, the office is now in modern premises in the west of Hamburg in Bahrenfeld since 2011.

At the moment nine employees build the team of MICHAEL PRIESTOPH GMBH. The management is supported by the trader Mr. Jochen Voecks.

MICHAEL PRIESTOPH GMBH

Friedensallee 120 • 22763 Hamburg

+49 (40) 30 70 13 - 0