Friedrich Bayer and the Beginning of a Giant Chemical Company

On this day, June 6 in the year 1825, the founder of Bayer AG was born in Wuppertal, Germany. His name is Friedrich Bayer, the salesman who started what would become Germany’s pride in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry.

Friedrich Bayer
Friedrich Bayer (Credit: Company website)

Bayer’s father was silkworker and the young Bayer became an apprentice in the fastest growing industry at that time, textile. In 1939, at age 14, he went to work at the Wesenfeld und Co., a chemicals dealer. There he learned the ropes of buying and selling paints and dyes. After 6 years, he himself became a dealer of natural dyes.

In 1948, he founded his own distribution company with a network that covered not only Germany but also France, Belgium, Russia, and the United States. The main product was natural dyestuff extracted from dyewoods. Later, when inorganic chemicals were discovered, Bayer partnered with his friend Friedrich Weskott to produced high quality tar dyes. Thus, the beginning of Bayer AG took place when they registered the business as Friedrich Bayer and Company on August 1, 1963.

Friedrich Bayer died in 1880 at the age of 55. His sons continued the business, expanding its product offerings to include drugs like aspirin which was discovered by Felix Hoffman inside Bayer’s laboratory.


    • Yes, the company’s many products useful products has greatly helped the world’s development.

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