In this context, on 22 December 1973, the Articles of Association of the Eika cooperative were signed. Forty-seven people invested 100,000 pesetas each, which was then a fortune. This bet aimed to generate jobs and reactivate economically an area that had no industrial tradition.
Start of the production plant. The first were years of great sacrifice, but also of great enthusiasm. The products that were offered were tubular electric resistors, armoured plates in cast iron, soles of electric boards, and tubular electric plates.
The products sold well, and a first expansion was necessary. It was financed by the sale of shares of the cooperative to families in the region. Thanks to these contributions, the sons and daughters of these families had preference when entering the cooperative.
This year, Eika began exporting its products, with the aim of increasing sales and consolidating its position in the market. That same year, the regional group Learko was also created, aiming to bring together the cooperatives that had been created in the Lea-Artibai region.
The great industrial crisis of that decade also hit hard Eika, which even considered stopping the manufacturing of resistors. By vote, however, they decided to continue. They resisted, reducing salaries by 80%, and currently, this business unit continues to have a good profitability.
Mondragon Corporación Cooperativa was founded, with the aim of becoming a more solid business organisation, grouped around sectors of activity. Eika was framed within the Components division.
Eika becomes committed to improving quality levels and developing new products. This year, they began to manufacture ceramic hobs. They expanded their facilities by 1500 m2, boosting, above all, the resistor line, whose demand had increased enormously.
This year was marked by an important technological leap: Eika began manufacturing the limit switches for the glass-ceramics. Until then, it had only manufactured heat generators. Now, it had a global offer, integrating elements for regulation and heat control into its processes.
After the technological leap of 1998, the following year was marked by great growth. The Ribbon and Touch Control hobs began to be marketed. A third expansion of the plant was carried out with the purchase of a casting unit, constituting the first subsidiary of the group: Foundeik.
Opening of the second subsidiary of Eika, being the first on an international level. The Czech Republic was chosen to host it. The former line of plates was moved there, and the subsidiary was named CZ Eika.
This year, Eika opened its third subsidiary, the second international subsidiary and first one outside Europe. It was in the Mexican city of Querétaro, with the aim of manufacturing glass-ceramic hobs for the US market.
The subsidiary Eika Polska was established in Wroclaw (Poland), for the manufacture of resistors. Throughout the year, the resistors made at Cz Eika were transferred to Eika Polska. This year, the number of workers in the group was around 1,600, 800 of which belonged to the subsidiaries.
This year, Eika expanded its offer, with the creation of a new business focusing on thermal insulation, which was materialised with the founding of the company Isoleika, specialising in insulating panels.
Expansion of the Mexican plant.
Expansion of The Polish plant for the manufacture of tubular heating elements.
The year of international consolidation, with the receipt of the Distinguished Supplier award from General Electric, to which it supplies 100% of its hobs. Eika offers complete solutions for electric cooking, including heat generation, its control, and accessory elements that complement the function.
Eika received Supplier Quality Excellence Award from Whirlpool in the category of Strategic Components for the EMEA region.