Company Profile: Piko Sonneberg
History in a Nutshell
Piko Mechanik (for Pionier-Konstruktionen, although it was originally spelled Pico) was founded in Chemnitz in 1949, later headquartered in Sonneberg, formerly East Germany. VEB Piko Sonneberg was thus part of the enormous state-owned company VEB VERO, which also included Owo and TeMos. After reunification, Piko faced dissolution, so Dr. René F. Wilfer bought it in 1992; it's now a private company known as Piko Spielwaren GmbH.
Although they manufactured mechanical toys such as washing machines, vacuum cleaners, cash registers and drills, Piko became best known as a leading manufacturer of G, HO, TT and N Scale locomotives, rolling stock, track, structure kits and accessories. A regular attendee of the Nürnberg International Toy Fair since the early 1960s, Piko hosts an open house every two years, when they're visited by up to 10,000 fans. They also have a following on the Internet.
N Scale Products
Piko was an early adopter of N Scale, introducing a small assortment of locomotives and freight cars in 1964; curiously, it seems as though they stuck with hook and loop couplers until 1967. Piko's models have all been European, so there was never much attention from the United States.
Later, their plastic structure kits were rebranded by Con-Cor.
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