South Tyrol's pool pioneers: Elda and Josef Wagmeister

We are sure that they would be proud, the two pool pioneers Josef and Elda. Their company Polyfaser has now been in existence for 55 years and an incredible 25,000 pools have been sold from South Tyrol all over the world. 110 of the very best employees ever ensure that the shop runs smoothly and business is booming on more than 37,000 m2 of production space and in our offices. Some in the Wagmeister family think it borders on a medium-sized miracle. And it's true: the story of the early years of polyfibre is more exciting than a thriller. Get out the popcorn and cold drinks, we're taking you on a journey through time!

South Tyrol's first power couple gets going

Like many good success stories, this one starts in a barn: journeyman carpenter Josef Wagmeister from Tarsch discovers his passion for glass-fibre reinforced plastic in the 1960s. So it is soon decided that the company Polyfaser, as it was called back then, should build the best pools in the world. But things don't quite work out at first. It was only when the Wagmeisters ventured a new start in Prad am Stilfserjoch that the business really took off. And it soon becomes clear that the self-confident Josef and his resolute wife Elda are also a dream couple in business terms, a real power couple, as they would say today. In just six months, the order books fill up so quickly that the Polyfaser workforce grows from 3 to 36 (!) employees within six months. 

Like a phoenix from the ashes

It was not unusual for a boss to stand his ground in the early 1970s. But one like Elda has rarely been seen in the Vinschgau Valley. It was not only in the office that Josef Wagmeister's wife showed the men where the hammer hung.  Whenever needed, Elda lent a hand. At the latest when the craftsmen saw her painting the production hall, they knew what she was made of. The real strength, an unbelievable resilience, had to be demonstrated by the Wagmeisters and their companions in September 1972. A fire raged for 45 minutes in the polyfibre factory and reduced the hard-earned success to rubble. A short circuit put 40 people out of work in one fell swoop, and the damage amounted to over 60 million lire. But because you only "give up" on one letter, Josef and Elda and the entire workforce rolled up their sleeves hours after the shock and started again, albeit from scratch. 

Loyal souls with a passion for pools

It was not to be two months before the first pools could be delivered again, and on 22.10.1973 a large article appeared in the daily newspaper Dolomiten, describing in flowery terms the opening of the Polyfaser factory in the new industrial zone in Prade. The Wagmeisters and their loyal employees had made it. From now on it could only go uphill. And it does. Until today. Thanks to the two Polyfaser pioneers. 

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Polyfaser SPA
Via Pineta 99
I-39026 Prato allo Stelvio (Bolzano)
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