Thade Gerdes GmbH: "APB's innovative nature has always been a key driver for selection."


For more than 115 years Thade Gerdes has been a well-known family company from Norden, Germany. The company highly values innovation and has walked hand in hand with the developments in Cone Penetration Testing over the years. In the beginning they performed CPTs with a hand-operated CPT system. In 1972 they began using their first pushing system with a mechanical CPT data acquisition system form A.P. van den Berg. In 1991 Thade Gerdes made the switch to our electrical data acquisition system and added our Vane Tester later on. Recently they invested in an Icone data acquisition system with a Magneto Module. Reason enough to dedicate our Newsletter column “Partners in Geotech” to Thade Gerdes. We spoke with mr Rimt Wortberg, managing director since 2007. 

Thade Gerdes GmbH Bohrunternehmen

Thade Gerdes was founded on 1 July 1900. Originally as a blacksmith, but after three generations it has grown into a renowned family company with the focus on water well drilling and onshore and near-shore soil investigation. They use self-built, specialized machines combined with CPT data acquisition systems from us. Thade Gerdes aims to optimize benefits for the customer in each project they execute by offering a complete service package and by reducing costs. Its experienced and committed team selects the most appropriate solution for each specific project and ensures that the customer is always well informed. To enhance its service portfolio Thade Gerdes wanted to add magneto testing and our Icone Magneto Module was considered to be the most valuable option.

Mr Wortberg at Thade Gerdes GmbH Bohrunternehmen

What mr Wortberg enjoys most in his work is to see a satisfied customer and to cooperate with such an experienced and motivated team. Motivation and experience are such strong characteristics of Thade Gerdes, because the business activities are in the hands of the family for already three generations. Also, many of its employees start working for Thade Gerdes as a youngster and stay until retirement. Mr Wortberg’s personal drive for working at the family company is his conviction that application of CPTs prior to the construction of housing should be mandatory. This is not yet the case in Germany. By being involved in the application of CPT, mr Wortberg hopes to contribute to the prevention of housing subsidence.

Cooperation with A.P. van den Berg

In our more than 40 years relationship with Thade Gerdes, we have ensured that Thade Gerdes was able to move with the times in performing CPTs. Our innovative nature has always been a key driver for Thade Gerdes to select A.P. van den Berg as their preferred supplier. With their latest purchase, the Icone Magneto technology, the company will initiate changes in the German construction market. The first example, the upcoming project for which the Magneto Module will be used, includes soil investigation focusing on bomb detection. The activities will be performed on Heligoland, a German island in the North Sea. During the Second World War more than 7,000 bombs were dropped here, making this island uninhabitable. Nowadays, construction is hampered by the explosives that are still present in the soil. Thade Gerdes will change this. With the reliable results of the Icone Magneto Module the company will contribute positively to the safe execution of future construction projects.


The interview ends with the question if mr Wortberg wants to mention anything in particular. He replies that on 1 July 2011 Thade Gerdes existed for 111 years, a huge achievement that they celebrated extensively! Furthermore, the project at Heligoland is mentioned as one where the company is very proud of. We feel Thade Gerdes has every right to be proud and we wish the team lots of success for the future!