Gies & Co.
Gies & Co. is the later version of Otto Frank's company called Opekta, and was created after he and his family went into hiding during the Nazi reign during the Holocaust.
Gies & Co.
After the arrival of the German occupiers in 1940, the company was re-registered under the name of Victor Kugler to prevent it from being confiscated as a Jewish-owned business. Otto Frank still remained in charge, but in secret. The company was renamed from Opekta to Gies & Co. Otto Frank had to resign in December 1941 at the point at which Otto Frank and Hermann van Pels and their families were forced into hiding in the upper rear rooms of the building in July 1942, but continued to act as a silent partner in the company. Their two-year confinement, which was aided by Kleiman, Kugler, Gies and Voskuijl, was famously chronicled by Otto Frank's youngest daughter, Anne, in an autobiographical work, The Diary of a Young Girl, published in 1947.
Otto Frank retired as director of Opekta in 1953 and was succeeded by Johannes Kleiman, until Kleiman's death in 1959. The building at Prinsengracht 263 was sold to developers in 1954 and Gies & Co was given notice to vacate the premises. By this time, Anne Frank's diary had drawn readers to visit the premises and a successful campaign saved the building from demolition. Gies & Co left the building in 1955 and five years later it re-opened as the Anne Frank House, a museum dedicated to the life and writings of Anne Frank.
The company was acquired by Dr. Oetker in August 1995.
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