Milestones in the Group history
1863 : Friedrich Bayer and Johann Friedrich Weskott establish a dyestuffs factory in Barmen. 18 years later, it is changed into the joint-stock company Farbenfabriken vorm. Friedr. Bayer & Co.
1884: Chemist Carl Duisberg begins his career at Bayer. Under his management, Bayer scientists should come to make pioneering discoveries.
1888: The pharmaceutical department is established.
1899: Aspirin® is registrered as a trade mark and becomes the world’s favorite pain killer.
1912: The company’s headquarters is transferred to Leverkusen.
1939: Bayer researcher Gerhard Domagk is awarded the Nobel Prize for Medicine for his discovery of the antibacterial effect of the sulfonamides (Prontosil).
1972: The company changes its name to Bayer AG.
1988: Bayer becomes the first German industrial company to be listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.
1999: Bayer marks the 100th birthday of Aspirin® by having professional mountaineers wrap Bayer’s former high-rise headquarters building in Leverkusen, transforming it into the world’s biggest Aspirin® pack and earning the company three entries in the Guinness Book of Records.
2000: The acquisition of the polyols business Lyondell Chemical Company makes Bayer the world’s biggest producer of raw materials for polyurethanes.
2001: Bayer acquires Aventis CropScience making it a world leader in crop protection.
2001: In December, Bayer’s management announces plans to establish independent operating subsidiaries under the umbrella of a management holding company. This is the beginning of Bayer CropScience, Bayer HealthCare, Bayer Chemicals and Bayer MaterialScience.
2002: The Bayer shares are listed for the first time on the New York Stock Exchange.
2003: WHO includes acetylsalicylic acid, the active ingredient in Aspirin®, in its “List of essential medicines”.
2003: Levitra®, the erectile dysfunction drug, is registrered in Europe. Today Levitra® is registrered in more than 80 countries around the world.
2004: Bayer becomes the first private-sector partner to UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme) in the area of youth and environment.
2005: Bayer is one of the world’s top three suppliers of non-prescription medicines after the acquisition of the Roche OTC business.
2005: Lanxess AG is spun off from the Bayer Group. Lanxess continues Bayer’s chemical business in Bayer Chemicals and parts of the polymer business.
2005: In December, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approves Sorafenib (Nexavar®), an active ingredient jointly developed by Bayer HealthCare and Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc., for the treatment of advanced renal cell carcinoma.
2006: Bayer launches the Group-wide innovation initiative “Triple-i: inspiration, ideas and innovation”, which calls on all employees worldwide to participate in the search for new product, development and business ideas.
2007: Bayer completes the acquisition of Schering AG and becomes one of the leading players on the market for specialized pharmaceuticals.