See how Clas Ohlson has grown

Ever since 1918, Clas Ohlson has been expanding. Throughout the century, this has affected the company’s headquarters in Insjön in rural Sweden. Here you can see how Clas Ohlson has grown over the years:

The first firm 1914-1918
Clas Ohlson runs the bicycle repair shop Spax Kammare in the village Sätra.

First workshop 1918-1920
Clas Ohlson & Co’s first workshop and office is in the basement of a house in Holen, near Insjön.

Log cabin in Insjön 1920-1921
The company moves. A 25 square-meter building becomes its new head office.

The old office building is now placed on Hjultorget in Insjön, right next to today’s Clas Ohlson headquarters and its Insjön store.

Nearer the tracks 1921-1925
The company moves to facilities closer to the train station in Insjön.

Own building 1924-1972
The company purchases land next to the train station in Insjön. A new office building is erected. The top floor of the building is turned into an apartment for Clas and Elsa and their children Thore and Mary. The company will remain here for the next 50 years, though the building will expand over time.

The new head office by the railway was inaugurated in 1924.

The villa 1930
Only six years after moving in, the company requires the full building. Clas builds a stone house for his family and himself, 20 metres from his office.

Clas Ohlson’s private villa. Built 1930 in central Insjön.

First wing added 1942

Second wing added 1956

The main office in Insjön with both wings added.

New head office 1972-
At Hjultorget (“Wheel Square,” in a loose translation; a water mill wheel dominates the area), Clas Ohlson builds a 5,000 square metre head office, which opens in 1972. The logotype for the clock, that to this day hangs on the wall, is drawn by Björn Haid, Clas’s grandson. Haid says the c symbolizes the company and the o represents the world. The new store at the far end of the building was inspired by the Åhlens store on Drottninggatan in Stockholm. (Retail chain Åhlens was founded by Clas Ohlson’s older cousins.) The architect Benny Agnas from nearby Leksand is particularly fond of the narrow windows that offer plenty of exhibition space inside the store.

Expansion on Hjultorget 1986
The company realises almost immediately that their new head office is too small. In 1986, a number of additional buildings are erected on Hjultorget. In 2008, the current office wing is built. The Clas Ohlson store in Insjön moves to its current location in 1986 and is expanded by an additional 3,197 square metres in 2010.

Clas Ohlson’s last (or latest) expansion of the head office, along route 70, took place in 2008.

The distribution centre 1995, 1998, 2008 and 2010.
The gigantic construction of a distribution centre began in the early 1990s and the facility opened in 1995. Three years later, it was expanded by an additional 17,500 square metres. In 2008, it expanded. And, in 2010, a new storage facility that can house over 120,000 pallets is built.

The distribution centre has grown continuously since it was first opened in 1995. The oldest part has the darker roof.