Milestones in BASF’s history

Innovation has been the force guiding BASF history since the company’s foundation in 1865. From indigo to audiotapes to catalysts: insights into BASF’s past and present.


Friedrich Engelhorn, a goldsmith and entrepreneur, founds the joint-stock corporation “Badische Anilin- & Sodafabrik” (BASF) in Mannheim in 1865. He has big plans from the word go: BASF should not only produce dyes but also the raw materials and auxiliaries as well as the precursors and intermediates required. BASF has retained soda, aniline and dyes in its portfolio to this day – while continuously adding to its product range along the way.

Related contents

Creating space for innovative ideas for the future


The nature of memory

Looking back into the future