How it all started

Carlos Albrecht is our “man of the first hour”.

The Lucerne native with Portuguese roots was an ingenious tinkerer, inventor and free spirit who had found his vocation in life: the development of a machine to dispense flammable liquids.

Over fifty years ago, he founded BiCA, the “Benzin Inkasso Conto Automat” – the pay-at-the pump system was born. And because of his background, he liked the double meaning: Bica is also the Portuguese word for source or origin, which is perfect!

Strong instinct for needs

Carlos Albrecht and BiCA had just the right offer at the right time: the motorisation of society was growing by leaps and bounds, and an increasing number of thirsty vehicles were heading for more and more petrol stations. Over the next three decades, Bica conquered the whole of Europe with its pay-at-the pump auto fuel terminals and even managed to expand into other continents.

Eventually, drivers were paying for their fuel at more than 25,000 BiCA auto fuel terminals.

Some of the systems are still in operation today.

With Carlos Albrecht’s retirement from the company at the beginning of the 1990’s, a quieter period followed and BiCA mainly concentrated on its domestic market – Switzerland.