Croda was formed in Yorkshire, England in 1925 to make lanolin. Initially, trading was difficult, but a report from the National Physical Laboratory showed that lanolin was an effective rust preventive. This opened up new markets, particularly during the war years which led to collaboration with the government to produce specialities such as camouflage creams, insect repellent and gun cleaning oils. Post war, many of these markets disappeared so the company had to diversify into new areas.
During the 1950s, Croda established a small sales/marketing operation in the USA, as a result of which many leading cosmetic companies began to incorporate Croda products, particularly lanolin and its derivatives, into their formulations.
In 1964, Croda became a public company and embarked on a series of major acquisitions, taking the company into new markets whilst continuing to expand at home and abroad throughout the 1960s/70s/80s. Croda became truly international.
During the 1990s, the company focused increasingly on its important speciality chemicals business. In 2006, Croda acquired Uniqema from ICI. Following a successful integration programme, Croda is firmly established as a global leader in natural based speciality chemicals and well placed to meet the challenges of the twenty first century.
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