Bayer is a German pharmaceutical and chemical company that is very well known for a wide range of products, most importantly the Aspirin. The company was founded 1863 and is still to this day an industry leader, branching well outside of what are considered to be the typical business interests of a major pharmaceutical company today.

Bayer History

Founded in Barmen Germany, Bayer’s greatest claim to fame is the invention of aspirin in 1897. The company is headquartered today in Leverkusen, North Rhine – Westphalia, Germany. Bayer was founded by Friedich Bayer and his business partner Johan Friedrich. Aspirin was the company’s first major product.

Acetylsalicylic acid, which was originally discovered by a French chemist by the name of Charles Frederic Gerhardt, was subsequently altered. The compound of salicylic acid or salicin was a well – known folk remedy that was extracted from the bark of willow trees. Aspirin quickly became a household name and by 1899, the drug was registered worldwide for its brand of acetylsalicylic acid.

However, during World War I, the United States confiscated all of Bayer’s assets and trademarks. As a consequence, the word “Aspirin” lost its brand position and protection in the United States, the United Kingdom and France for all brands of the same drug. In more than 80 other countries today to include Germany, Switzerland, Canada and Mexico, Aspirin is still a registered trademark of the Bayer Corporation.

Bayer Operations

Bayer produces a wide range of products that span a wide scope of health industries. Products on the market today include general medicines, specialty medicines, veterinary drugs, diagnostic imaging products, diabetic care products, over the counter remedies, women’s health products and even pesticides, coatings, adhesives and polymers to name just a few.

Because of this increase in scope, Bayer reorganized into a holding company in 2003 in order to better segregate operational and strategic management of the company. Bayer AG now controls a number of limited companies to include Bayer HealthCare, Bayer Chemicals, Bayer CropScience, Bayer MaterialScience and three service limited companies. Shares of the Bayer parent organization fell on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, London Stock Exchange and formerly on the New York Stock Exchange.


Bayer’s company vision hinges around focusing on innovation to maintaining a leadership role in all of the markets in which they are competing. The company views this as the means by which the company can best improve the lives of millions of people each year. Entry into the diagnostic sciences is a way that Bayer has strengthened its position in this regard.

Key Facts

The Bayer Group operates worldwide today with companies in almost every country. The company employees more than 112,000 employees and shows annual revenue exceeding $35 billion Euros for many years running. The company headquarters is in Germany as well as many of the subsidiary companies. Canada, France, the US, and the UK house other headquarters operations while production facilities are located in Belgium, the Philippines, the Netherlands and Italy.



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