About us

We are manufacturer of the finest writing inks, perfectly matched printer inks and special inks for complicated industrial applications. Based in the heart of Dresden, we have been developing high-quality inks under the name "Octopus" since 2011. However, our roots go back to 1826 via August Leonhardi and Barock. In direct succession, we continue the tradition of Dresden ink manufacturers.

Octopus Fluids GmbH & Co. KG is part of the OCTOPUS® group of companies.

  • As a manufacturing company, Octopus Fluids is active in the research, development, production and sale of inks and paints for business customers.
  • The trading company Octopus Concept GmbH is responsible for the distribution of our products to both business and private customers. Our sister company has set itself the task of creating a holistic product range that offers not only inks and colours but also numerous other articles with which the inks can be used and processed. Feel free to browse through the company's online shop here.

Success history of a Saxon ink manufacturer

In order to look at the history of Octopus Fluids GmbH & Co. KG as a whole, we begin our account long before the actual founding of the company. The tradition of ink production in Saxony goes back as far as 1826. The finest writing inks were already produced and sold in Dresden in the 19th century under the brand name "Aug. Leonhardi". From 1945, this company was continued as VEB Bürochemie Dresden (with the brand name "Barock"). After reunification, the company was renamed Barock Bürobedarf GmbH, which continued to sell inks under the name "Barock". Formerly the only ink manufacturer in the GDR, Barock successfully researched, developed and produced inks in Dresden for many years. This company would later play a decisive role in the foundation of our own company Octopus Fluids.

 

From ink seller to ink manufacturer - the beginnings of the Octopus company

Our managing director Gunther Lange has been involved in the "ink business" since 2004. He took his first steps as an entrepreneur with the opening of an ink refilling station in Zwickau and online trading under the name "Octopus". The aim of the online shop was to supply the ink refilling stations throughout Germany with the necessary equipment and extensive expertise. This naturally included the various inks, which not only had to be of high quality, but also always available. Today, we still sell our inks through our online shop "Octopus Office" and provide our customers with up-to-date industry information and detailed instructions on the topic of "ink".

This is how the first contact with the Saxon ink manufacturer Barock-Bürobedarf GmbH and its high-quality products was made and a close cooperation between the two companies developed. The symbiosis of Barock-Bürobedarf GmbH's many years of expertise in ink production and the direct line to end customers via Octopus formed the perfect starting point for successful research and further development in this segment. 

In 2011, however, this cooperation came to an abrupt end. Barock-Bürobedarf GmbH filed for insolvency and Octopus lost one of its most important suppliers and partners. This was the beginning of Octopus Fluids GmbH & Co. KG.

October 2011 - The foundation of OCTOPUS Fluids GmbH & Co. KG

The demise of what used to be the only ink manufacturer in the GDR, Barock-Bürobedarf GmbH, presented the Octopus trading company with a major challenge. To ensure the continued reliable supply of quality inks to our customers, our managing director Gunther Lange founded Octopus Fluids GmbH & Co. KG. Together with chemist Dr. Kai Oliver Schäfer, a former employee of the Barock company, he dared to take the step of setting up his own manufacturing plant in the heart of Dresden, allowing the long-standing tradition of ink production in Dresden to live on. The resources bought up from the insolvent company formed the basis for a successful continuation of the business with the liquid resource. For the "Octopus" group of companies, Octopus Fluids GmbH & Co. KG, with its development and production of inks, has been at the heart of the company ever since. The "Octopus Concept GmbH" takes over the distribution via our own online shop and other online platforms and supplements the range with numerous accessories. The direct line of ink production in Dresden thus goes back to the year 1826.

2012 - Back to the roots

In the years following the founding of the company, the sails were clearly set for a new beginning. At the new production site in Hamburger Straße, the two companies were brought under one roof and now formed the Octopus Group. The corporate structures of Octopus Fluids were set up and all processes were redesigned. Existing customer relationships were re-established in order to tie in with the more successful times of the Barock company. The product portfolio was also to be restructured and supplemented with new inks. The range of printer inks was of course continued and constantly supplemented with the latest new developments. For the industrial sector, the still young company concentrated on the already existing products and their sale to existing customers, but was always looking for new development partners for further research and development of special inks.

To emphasise our sense of tradition, our managing director Gunther Lange decided to revive the range of writing inks for fountain pens. Under the name "Pelikan of the East", the inks of the Barock company became famous and were henceforth to be available as "Octopus Fluids writing inks" with the highest quality characteristics. As in the "Barock" days more than 60 years ago, the ink is filled into a small, noble ink glass with a timeless design and forms a special eye-catcher on every desk. More than 20 colours are now available in this product group and more shades are being added all the time.

2015 - Opening up new business areas

Our now established medium-sized company with a growing workforce was constantly interested in developing further and mastering new challenges. So it came about that towards the end of 2015 we took over the production of stamping inks from the ink factory Wilhelm Haber, which was founded in the 19th century. Our customer base expanded to include manufacturers of beverages and insulating materials, among others, who require high-quality solvent stamping inks specifically for their application. In addition, we offer our customers a range of dating mats and roller stamps in addition to the inks that are suitable for them. The product portfolio is constantly developing, including water-based stamping inks, which can be used in particular for re-inking stamp pads in the office sector.

2017 - Focus on research and development

The demands of modern industry on special inks are constantly changing. In order to meet current trends, Octopus Fluids is focusing even more on the wishes and needs of its customers. The team of laboratory and production staff works with immense commitment on the new development of inks for special areas of application in industry. This has resulted in development projects for inks with radiological properties, sublimation inks with individual characteristics according to customer requirements, inks with special adhesion properties on difficult substrates, etc. We increasingly established ourselves as a special ink manufacturer that focuses on ink development for novel applications and can present suitable product solutions. Find out more about our ink development projects.

2018 - New opportunities and challenges

Our constantly growing product range and the large number of newly acquired customers constantly pose new challenges for Octopus Fluids. The meanwhile 20 employees work daily with great dedication on the development, production and sale of our inks. Production capacities have to be expanded and processes optimised. More efficient workflows are to improve and accelerate the manufacturing processes in order to continue to keep delivery times to our customers as short as possible. Among other things, investments are being made in improved filling lines and labelling machines. The more diverse range of products also poses new challenges for the warehouse and its employees. The storage capacities have to be expanded to make room for our constant new developments. Of course, the workload in the area of customer service and sales is increasing to the same extent, so changes are also taking place here.

In addition, we are now supported by development partners in our ink development projects. The cooperation with universities and institutes, such as the Technical Universities in Dresden and Chemnitz, various institutes of the Fraunhofer Gesellschaft and other partners, is increasing and boosts our development competence immensely. Today, we work together with our cooperation partners on developments, some of which are EU-funded, for different, innovative processing methods for future industry.

2019 - Octopus Fluids enters "new" territory

This year, we ventured into a completely new product line for us and thus also a new customer group. We dedicated ourselves to the heart project of one of our employees and plunged into the creative sector. Until then, our product range consisted mainly of technical products, which were mostly bought by business and industrial customers. With the development of our Alcohol Inks, we expanded our previous clientele to include artists and do-it-yourselfers. With our writing inks, we have certainly already laid a foundation stone here for years, but a completely new business field opened up for us, away from technical products in need of explanation and towards inks that are emotionally charged and used artistically. The Alcohol Inks range offers European artists access to Alcohol Inks developed and produced in Germany for the first time. In addition to the now 50 shades in our product portfolio, our range includes extensive accessories as well as detailed instructions and practical tips on how to use Alcohol Inks.

Remaining true to the artistic line, our writing inks also received special attention this year. We improved and perfected our existing formulations to achieve even better writing and drawing results with various writing instruments. In addition, our colour palette was expanded to include new, delicate pastel shades in response to many requests from our customers.

2020 - The Corona pandemic - an opportunity for us

We have also felt the effects of the pandemic. Besides compulsory home offices, curfews, procurement problems and sick leaves, this difficult time also brought us advantages. For many companies, the supply bottlenecks of the globalised world made products manufactured in Europe more interesting again. There is more focus again on securing supply chains and this has led to rising sales and new development orders.

With the Saxon writing instrument manufacturer Diplomat, we have gained a local partner from the field of writing culture. Together we are working on the further development of our fountain pen inks and their fine-tuning to the writing instruments and nibs of the medium-sized company. Our complementary product ranges form the basis for successful business for both companies.

Signs of the future

We are more optimistic than ever about our future business development. Again and again we have been asked whether we, as a manufacturer based here, have any chance at all against the very price-aggressive competition from Asia. Yes we do. In particular, our special developments for industrial companies cannot be provided by suppliers located far away. Our customers are also our partners, because very often they have a direct influence on the features of our inks that help them achieve perfect printing results. The more suitable we make the product for them, the more loyal they will be to us. Short delivery distances and delivery reliability to our customers are also becoming increasingly important. Last but not least, we are confident that we will continue to find new product ranges where we can be better than the competitor's product and continue to find very strong unique selling points.

Thanks to the increasing online presence of our products and our activities on social media channels, we have our ear even closer to the customer and can now better pick up on trends and suggestions and incorporate them into a product.

We see further enormous scope in international markets. To this end, we are increasingly looking for distribution partnerships in pretty much all continents of the world. What we have succeeded in doing with a general agent for our creative inks in Australia, for example, can be extended to many regions. We are happy to accept enquiries in this regard.

 

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