Born in Munich on June 23, 1859, and the son of a brewer, Johann Baptist Winklhofer later apprenticed as a mechanic. From 1880 onwards he took a close interest in the high-wheel or “penny-farthing” bicycle - something very fashionable at that time. In 1883, he began to sell English penny-farthing bicycles as the traveling representative for the Rudge company. During this period he met a man named Richard Adolf Jaenicke, who later became his business partner. In 1885 they joined forces and started a bicycle repair workshop in the town of Chemnitz, Germany. A year later they began to produce their own bicycles and sell them under the name “Wanderer”.
Wanderer Fahrradwerke AG
Starting on October 1, 1897, after Wanderer had been converted into a joint-stock company in 1896 (and renamed Wanderer Fahrradwerke AG), Winklhofer became its sole director. In 1902 he withdrew from this position and joined the company’s Supervisory Board, where he remained a member until 1929. In 1916 he established a second company in Munich, initially to manufacture munitions for the armed forces, and later transmission chains for machinery and motor vehicles. These were successfully marketed as the brand IWIS, an abbreviation of the name Johann Winklhofer Söhne (Sons). Johann Baptist Winklhofer died on March 28, 1949, in Landsberg on the River Lech.