SKF stands for Svenska Kullager Fabriken (Swedish Ball Bearing Factory). It is a leading bearing and seal manufacturing company founded in Gothenburg, Sweden in 1907.
The company manufactures and supplies bearings, seals, lubrication systems, maintenance products, power transmission products, condition monitoring systems and related services.
Today SKF is the largest bearing manufacturer in the world, and employs around 48,600 people in 140 production and manufacturing sites, in addition to 15,000 worldwide distribution locations in 130 countries worldwide.
In 1907 Sven Wingqvist patented a multi-row self-aligning radial ball bearing and established a company to manufacture his product. The new ball bearing was successful from the outset and just three years later SKF had 325 employees.
In 1910 a subsidiary company was established in the UK under the name Skefko Ball Bearing Company Ltd.
Offices were opened in Lower Regent Street, London and later the same year a production plant was established in Luton. The company expanded rapidly and soon had offices in a number of towns and cities across the UK.
In 1974 Skefko changed its name to SKF (UK) Limited.