In 1928 Julius Lowenthal invented the world’s first working semi-automatic lighter. He also founded Colibri and in 1935 he introduced the fully automatic “Monopol” lighter, which had an acceleration system built into it. From 1940 to 1945 Colibri went patriotic with their “Stormgard” lighter specifically designed for our US soldiers fighting in World War ll.
Jack Lowenthal, son of Julius joined the team in 1952 and invented a lighter with a visible multiple gas refill. In 1958 he came out with a hydraulic auto-flint system and in 1967 added an electric lighter named the “Molectric”.
In 1974 Colibri supplied the famous gold gun for the wildly popular James Bond film “The Man with the Golden Gun”. It was made from an older Molectric 88 lighter where they also created cufflinks, cigarette cases and a fountain pen.
The 1980’s rolls in and Jack’ son David joins the Colibri team and starts supplying such items as Swiss Watches, cufflinks and fine pens. In 2001 the Vortex and Trifecta lighters were introduced with twin and triple flame capabilities.
Then in 2009 the company came to a screeching halt, as it decide it was closing its doors and seeking protection from filing a petition of receivership with the state of Rhode Island.
Colibri then changed ownership in February 2009 and moved their headquarters from Rhode Island to New York City. Directly after they introduced the Class, Design and Technical Series.