The company was founded in 1891, by Gerard Philips and his father Frederik Philips. Frederik, a banker based in Zaltbommel, financed the purchase and setup of an empty factory building in Eindhoven, where the company started the production of carbon-filament lamps and other electro-technical products in 1892.
In 1895, the Philipses brought in Anton, Gerard’s younger brother by sixteen years. Anton started work as a sales representative soon, however, he began to contribute many important business ideas. The family business began to expand rapidly, resulting in the founding of Philips Metaalgloeilampfabriek N.V. (Philips Metal Filament Lamp Factory Ltd.) in Eindhoven in 1908, followed in 1912, by the foundation of Philips Gloeilampenfabrieken N.V. After Gerard and Anton Philips changed their family business by founding the Philips corporation, they laid the foundations for the later electronics multinational. This first factory has since been adapted and is used as a museum.