About Knauf

We are one of the UK's leading manufacturers of lightweight building products and systems.

The Knauf Group

Knauf is a family-owned group of companies that manufactures building materials globally and employs more than 26,500 people across the world. The UK business was founded in 1988, but the Knauf Group dates back to 1932 when brothers Karl and Alfons Knauf started mining gypsum deposits in Germany.

The UK business began in 1988 when the Knauf Group built a plasterboard factory in Sittingbourne, Kent. Two years later, we opened a second plasterboard plant in North East Lincolnshire. In 2013 we opened a striking modernist-inspired building known as The Cube – an innovative training, visitor and administrative centre. And, most recently, in 2018 we launched the Knauf Clerkenwell showroom in London.

Why Clerkenwell?

Clerkenwell is a hub for design innovation and progressive architecture. It is the largest concentration of practices, showrooms and support services in the UK. Knauf is actively moving into the concept design phase of the project process.

Knauf Clerkenwell is a destination for inspiration, learning and collaborative working with the Architect & Design community. The opportunity to talk through a project or design, and being provided a solution even before plans are drawn up.


It all started in 1932, when two brothers and mining engineers Alfons and Karl Knauf secured the mining rights to gypsum deposits in the Schengen community (Obermosel) in Germany. The project was quickly crowned with success: by 1933 Knauf’s first gypsum factory was established in Perl (Moselle), Germany – and this factory is still the nucleus of production technology for the worldwide Knauf Group.


The founding of the Federal Republic of Germany in 1949 was also a time of new beginnings for Knauf – coinciding with a milestone in the company’s history as the company relocated from Perl to Iphofen in northern Bavaria.


Iphofen and leadership in innovation. In Iphofen growth of the family company as an innovative partner in the building materials industry accelerated. For example, Knauf created completely new construction methods with the production of fully new gypsum boards in 1958.


In 1978, Knauf laid the cornerstone for its insulation materials division, an area that is still very important today: Knauf took over a production facility for glass wool insulation material in Shelbyville (USA).


At the beginning of the 1980’s, another significant change was on the way: Nikolaus and Baldwin Knauf, sons of the founders, took over management of the Group – and, with their consequent continuation and implementation of the company’s philosophy, had a significant share in Knauf’s growth.


Constructed in 1988, the Sittingbourne Plasterboard plant was brought on line from a green field site in less than twelve months. It is currently one of the fastest running production lines in Europe and has become a model for a new generation of Plasterboard Plants for the Knauf group.


Following the success of the Sittingbourne Plant, construction on a second UK Plasterboard manufacturing facility commenced in 1990. Based on the banks of the River Humber, the Immingham plasterboard plant services the North of England, Scotland and the Irish market.


Knauf now has 150 production facilities and sales organisations in over 60 countries, 26,000 employees worldwide, and sales of 6.3 billion. Knauf UK extended its product portfolio into Floors, Exterior Renders & Facades. It also introduced innovations into the market such as Designboard products and ready-mixed spray plaster.


Knauf Clerkenwell is opened.

Our key values


Menschlichkeit translates as ‘humanity’ in English.

We see our colleagues, our business partners and our stakeholders as part of a big family where traditional principles of integrity and humanity still count.

By treating each other fairly and by embracing diversity, together we act with social responsibility. We take care of each other, of society and of the environment.


We work in partnership by creating an environment of mutual trust.

This means that we are encouraged to take on individual responsibilities and make decisions, because we trust each other’s judgement.

We are one team and we support each other and all the members of the Knauf community.


We are committed to our work, our colleagues and our community. Taking pride and pleasure in what we do comes naturally to us.

We always go the extra mile, achieve sustainable results and provide our customers with high quality solutions.

Knauf offers real opportunities for personal growth and development, helping to create a successful team.


Through an entrepreneurial leadership style and a willingness to take risks, we have successfully grown from a small family company into a family-owned, globally active organisation.

Our continued success is driven by a spirit of pioneering, innovation and change combined with a pragmatic and results-oriented approach.