Herstal, in the early 20th century. In 1907, Emile Vanhulen, who was working in Liège, in a small springs factory called DE MARNEFFE, decided to set up a small spring-making workshop with the help of his wife, in the outhouse of the family home. At the time, the Liège region had many large customers for these products, and the new workshop started very quickly to supply the firing pin springs for hunting rifles to arms factories in Herstal, including the recently founded Fabrique Nationale (FN).
In addition, cycle manufacturers were ordering saddle springs for bicycles and door-opener manufacturers were buying extension springs.
At the Progress' Exhibition that took place in 1925 in Paris, Émile Vanhulen was awarded a silver medal for his "window wedges" and a gold medal for his "cycle saddle suspensions". The workshop moved to larger premises, but Émile Vanhulen was more interested in hunting than in expanding his business.