The Hilleberg history

 

In 1971, Bo Hilleberg, a professional forester, founded his own company, Hilleberg AB. That same year, while on a ski vacation in the Austrian Tyrol, Bo met Renate Neuner. After a couple of years, the two had fallen in love, married, and she had moved with him to Stockholm, Sweden. Their marriage was the final, necessary ingredient in the mix that has become Hilleberg the Tentmaker.

Before Renate, Bo’s fledgling company was primarily a forestry equipment concern, with tent making as a hoped-for sideline. An avid, lifelong outdoorsman, Bo was terminally frustrated with tents that required pitching the inner tent first and then covering it with a loose rain fly that usually displayed the same properties as a kite in the wind. He envisioned a tent that had an outer and inner tent that pitched together, simultaneously – but he didn’t have the necessary sewing skills. With Bo and Renate’s marriage, conjugal and commercial became one: Renate took charge of the sewing while Bo handled design and sales, a division of labor that has served the couple – and company – admirably ever since.

For the company – and the family – each decade has brought an obvious and significant growth, always based on family and company being inextricably linked. 2011 marks Hilleberg's 40th anniversary!

 

1971




1973




1975




1977


Bo Hilleberg establishes his company, Hilleberg AB, and, on a skiing trip to Austria, meets his future wife, Renate Neuner.




Hilleberg introduces the Keb, the first commercial tent to have a connected inner and outer. The simultaneous pitching of both elements of the tent make it an immediate success.



Bo discovers that a certain type of silicone-coated fabric is six to seven times stronger than nearly any other tent fabric, and adopts it for all Hilleberg outer tents. Dubbed Kerlon 1500, it has an exceptional tear strength of 15 kg/33 lbs.

 





Bo redesigns the linked inner and outer tent design so that the two pieces can be disconnected, and incorporates this into a tunnel tent design.

1980




1988




1990




1995


The introduction of the Keron, then and now the company’s signature tent.



The first, extended vestibule GT versions – Keron and Nammatj – are introduced.



Hilleberg begins making dome tents. Pictured is a multi-color Staika prototype produced in 1989 for a South Pole expedition.

 





The Akto, a roomy, very light, solo tent with true all season function, is an immediate hit upon its introduction.

1998




2000-2003




2005-2009




2011


The original Saivo debuts, and showcases the new short pole sleeve and clip system, which makes pitching tents with multiple pole crossings simpler and quicker, especially in windy conditions.



In 2000, Petra Hilleberg founds Hilleberg, Inc., the US subsidiary in Redmond, WA. In 2003, Rolf Hilleberg becomes Managing Director of Hilleberg the Tentmaker in Sweden. Bo Hilleberg continues as Chairman of the Board.



Hilleberg expands its line in all categories, with the modular group tent Atlas, the lightweight tunnel tents Kaitum and Kaitum GT, the fully freestanding dome tents Allak and Soulo, and the very light group shelter Altai.



Introduction of the new four person dome tent Saitaris. Built for the most demanding conditions it features the new full pole sleeve plus short sleeve and clip system, which is designed specifically to make setting up such a large dome tent simple, even by one person in bad weather.