Norman Grimshaw formed the original company, Vitafoam Limited, on £100 capital at Glen Mill in Oldham, England. The company manufactured latex cushions and mattresses.
The company diversified into automotive products and carpet underlay.
Vitafoam had a thirst for expansion and established overseas associate businesses. The company was made public and was listed on the London Stock Exchange. New products were introduced in the UK through Vitafoam's first slabstock production of polyether foam.
Further joint ventures were established across the globe. Acquisitions fuelled growth and polyester foam technology was introduced to the company with the acquisition of the Caligen Group. This acquisition also introduced Caligen Europe in Breda, the Netherlands, the company's first business in mainland Europe.
This decade was a period of growth through acquisition in Europe and many of today’s brands were acquired. Each retained its identity and unique technologies; the concepts of autonomy and cooperation were born. A technological breakthrough in the UK meant Vitafoam launched combustion-modified high-resilience foams (CMHR) ahead of market expectations.
Latex was reintroduced with acquisition of Radium Foam BV. There was a bold strategic expansion into Poland with the launch of a greenfield manufacturing plant at Brzeg Dolny in 1993, followed by further joint ventures and investments in Eastern Europe.
Expansion in Eastern Europe continued with further conversion sites and greenfield factories opening in Hungary, Romania and Slovakia. The parent company British Vita PLC was taken into private ownership and became known as the Vita Group: the foam businesses became Vita Cellular Foams.
Geographic expansion continued with new conversion facilities commissioned in Croatia, Bulgaria, Republic of Serbia and Albania. Flooring business, Ball & Young, strengthened its position and competitiveness with expansion of its state of the art production facility. In response to the continuing growth in its comfort markets, Vita invested in increased capacity (primarily curing and storage) in Lithuania, Hungary, Romania and the UK. Vita Technical Foams opened conversion facilities in Poland and China.