Tomas Bata was born in 1876 and started life as a poor boy but he did not dream of making millions, he seems, rather to be obsessed with the idea of helping his country and his people. In the young Bata there quickly ripens the wish and the determination to achieve something. He is a shoemaker - a practical man, but with a power of imagination amounting to genius. Thomas has visions of colossal factories, with the most modern machinery, installed in airy workshops, and a system of the most modern factory-hygiene.
In 1955 a Statue of Tomas Bata was unveiled at East Tilbury. This statue was later borrowed by the people of Zlin in order that several copies could be made. Annually in July after this members of staff would congregate in order to lay a wreath at this statue, this day was known as Founders Day.
At the time of Tomas Bata's tragic death in a plane crash the company intensifies diversification into the production of tires, aircrafts, bicycles, machineries. Still a young man, Thomas J Bata, his son, convenes the 1st international congress of young Bata people.
Tomas is regarded as a businessman with an acute sense of social consciousness. He was one of the first pioneers looking to the welfare and social life of his employees. He is credited with efforts to modernize his hometown providing the people with employment, and housing facilities, making him a very popular citizen in the town. He also became the mayor of Zlín.
In those workshops, people freed from slavery and squalor are working for the realization of his great social ideal: the shoeing of millions.Tomas Bata remained true to his dreams of "Good and cheap shoes, even for the very poorest, and high wages for all who worked for him".
He coined the motto "Our customers are our masters".The Bata Shoe Company is registered in Zlin in 1894 , by the Tomás, his sister Anna and brother Antonín. In 1895 Antonin left to join the army, and Anna left shortly after to get married. Tomas the took over the company and started to build his dream.By 1905 production had reached 2,200 pairs of shoes per day, these were produced by 250 employees. By 1917 sales had reached 2 million pairs per year which were produced by 5000 employees around the world living and working within Bata Communities.
Charles Pignal, Great Grandson of Tomas Bata on Founder's Day 2012