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Success Factors – Strategic Decisions

What has made BASF successful for more than 150 years? The Verbund as its characteristic strength in any case. But also, an early consistent orientation towards research and customer relations. Access to its own resources completes the top four long-term success factors.

When BASF is founded by Friedrich Engelhorn (1821–1902) in 1865, Engelhorn pursues an innovative idea: integrating all production stages at only one location. The Verbund principle is developed from this idea, which is behind the company’s foundation, at the headquarters in Ludwigshafen.

Three years after it is founded, BASF appoints Heinrich Caro (1834–1910) as its first Research Director to strengthen its own research activities. In the following years, an unparalleled research organization is born. BASF becomes known for a strategy based on innovation and even wins a Nobel Prize.

Application technology of BASF is founded in 1891 and involves more than mere contact with customers from the very beginning. Instead, it offers intensive support and advice which leads BASF to develop an explicit customer focus.

When BASF is founded, coal is the basis of the chemical industry. 100 years later the switch to petrochemicals is in full swing. In both cases, BASF secures its own raw materials.