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Akzo Nobel

Akzo Nobel N.V.
Public (Euronext: AKZ)
HeadquartersAmsterdam, the Netherlands
Key peopleHans Wijers, CEO
ProductsBasic and industrial chemicals; decorative coatings, and industrial refinishing products; contraceptives, and antidepressants
Revenue € 13.737 billion (2006)
Operating income € 1.462 billion (2006)
Net income € 1.184 billion (2006)
Employees62,000 (2006)

Akzo Nobel is a multinational company, active in the fields of healthcare products, coatings and chemicals. Headquartered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, the company has activities in more than 80 countries, and employs approximately 43,000 people. Sales in 2005 were EUR 13 billion, of which 27% in Pharma products, 43% in Coatings, and 30% in Chemicals products.



  Akzo Nobel consists of fifteen business units, with business responsibility and autonomy. For managerial purpose these cooperate in three groups, which are supported by one managerial board.

Board of management

  The Board of Management (BOM) of Akzo Nobel consists of three people, viz. Chairman and CEO since 2003 Hans Wijers, CFO Rob Frohn, and member Leif Darner. The board holds office in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Prior to August 2007, the group was headquartered in Arnhem .


The Pharma group consists of two major business units

  • Organon International for human healthcare,[1] and
  • Intervet for animal healthcare.
  • Diosynth is a smaller organizational unit, producing some core bulk ingredients
  • Nobilon produces vaccines

At the beginning of 2006, it was announced that Akzo Nobel intents to start an initial public offering for these business units, under the name of Organon BioSciences. In March 2007 Organon BioSciences was announced to be purchased by Schering-Plough.

Products developed by the Pharma businesses include contraceptives (e.g., NuvaRing), antidepressants (e.g., Remeron SolTab), infertility treatments (e.g., Puregon/Follistim) and veterinary vaccines (e.g., Nobivac dog and cat vaccines; Equilis horse vaccines).


Akzo Nobel is the world's leading coatings company with key products paints, services and specialized equipment for the car repair and transportation market. The coatings groups consist of the business units:

  • Car Refinishes (CR)
  • Decorative coatings (DECO)
  • Industrial finishes (IF)
  • Powder coatings (POW)
  • Marine and protective coatings (MPC)
  • Nobilas

Akzo Nobel markets their products under various brandnames such as Sico, Sikkens, International, Interpon, Casco, Nordsjö, Sadolin, Taubmans, Crown, Lesonal, Levis, Flora, Vivexrom, Marshall, and Pinotech just to mention a few. These products were used on London's Millennium Wheel, La Scala Opera House in Milan, the Öresund Bridge between Denmark and Sweden, the Beijing National Stadium, Airbus A380, and Stadium Australia in Sydney.


Following a 2005 reorganization, the chemicals group now consists of five business units.

  • Base Chemicals (BC)
  • Functional Chemicals (FC)
  • Polymer Chemicals (PC)
  • Surfactants (SC)
  • Pulp and Paper Chemicals, under brand name Eka Chemicals (PPC)

As chemicals producer, Akzo Nobel is a world's leading salt specialist, chlor-alkali products, and other industrial chemicals. Ultimately, Akzo Nobel products are found in everyday items such as paper, ice cream, bakery goods, cosmetics, plastics and glass. Each BU has an annual turnover of approx EUR 600 million.

Historical timeline

  • 1777 Danish paints company founded by Jacob Holmblad, later operating as Holmblad & Co.
  • 1792 Dutch lacquers manufacturer Sikkens Lakken, founded by Wiert Willem Sikkens in Groningen
  • 1826 British silk and crepe manufacturer Courtaulds founded by Samuel Courtauld,
  • 1835 Dutch sulfuric acid producer Ketjen, founded by Gerhard Tileman Ketjen
  • 1838 Dutch oils and oatmeal company Noury & Van der Lande
  • 1841 Swedish stearin candles factory Liljeholmens Stearinfabrik, founded by Lars Johan Hierta in Stockholm
  • 1870 Swedish superfosfate producer Stockholms Superfosfat Fabrik,
  • 1874 Swedish chemical company KemaNobel was founded by Alfred Nobel
  • 1886 Dutch chemicals and soda factory, founded by Constant Kortman and Herman Schulte in Rotterdam
  • 1887 Dutch pharmaceuticals laboratory Zwanenburg
  • 1895 Swedish electrochemical company EKA was founded also by Alfred Nobel
  • 1899 German fiber producer Vereinigte Glanszstoff Fabriken
  • 1907 Danish paints company founded by Gunnar Asgeir Sadolin as Sadolins Farver
  • 1911 Dutch rayon (artificial silk) company Eerste Nederlandse Kunstzijdefabriek Arnhem, founded by Jacque Coenraad Hartogs in Arnhem
  • 1912 Danish paints companies Sadolins Farver and Holmblad & Co. merges as Sadolin & Holmblad
  • 1918 Dutch salt producer Nederlandse Zoutindustrie (NeZo)
  • 1921 US slaughtering industry Armour and Company starts fatty acid production, in Chicago
  • 1923 Dutch pharmaceuticals company Organon founded by Saal van Zwanenberg
  • 1937 Swedish producer of coatings for fishing lines Berol, founded by Bernström and Olson in Södertälje
  • 1965 Kortman and Schulte is taken over by Koninklijke Zwanenburg Organon forming Koninklijke Zout Organon
  • 1969 The AKU and the Koninklijke Zwanenburg Organon merge, forming AKZO
  • 1984 KemaNobel and Swedish weapons manufacturer Bofors merge to form Nobel Industries
  • 1987 AKZO acquires specialty chemicals division of Stauffer
  • 1987 Nobel Industries acquires Danish paints group Sadolin & Holmblad
  • 1990 Nobel Industries acquires English paints group Crown Berger
  • 1990 Courtaulds separates itself into two businesses, viz., Courtaulds Textiles for apparel manufacture and Courtaulds plc for fibres and chemicals
  • 1994 AKZO merges with Nobel Industries, forming Akzo Nobel. The new Akzo Nobel has 20 business entities. Bofors continues as a separate entity.
  • 1998 Akzo Nobel acquires Courtaulds of the UK, a leading international chemical company which has leading positions in high-tech industrial coatings and man-made fibers. EU forces sale of Aeronautical films and sealants businesses to allow completion.
  • 1999 Akzo Nobel divests its Fibers Group 'Acordis' to CVC Capital Partners.
  • 2004 Catalyst business sold to Albemarle Corp. and Coatings Resins business divested to Nuplex Industries.
  • 2006 Akzo Nobel acquires the quoted Canadian Coatings company SICO Inc.
  • 2007 Organon pharmaceutical business sold to Schering-Plough.
  • 2007 Akzo Nobel acquires Imperial Chemical Industries plc (ICI).


  1. ^ "Bipolar Disorder", Clinical Trials Update, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News, 2007-06-15, pp. 52,55. Retrieved on 2007-12-16. 

See also

  • List of European companies
  • List of Dutch companies
  • List of Swedish companies
Business units
  • Organon
  • Intervet
  • Nobilon International
  • Akzo Nobel Base Chemicals
  • Eka Chemicals
  • Akzo Nobel Car Refinishes
  • International Marine and Protective Coatings
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Akzo_Nobel". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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