175 years Safic Alcan
175 years
of business adventures
It all began in 1847 with a flourishing trading business and an unparalleled expertise in rubber. Safic-Alcan went on to reinvent itself, successfully diversifying its business over the past 175 years. After all this time, our journey is just beginning.


The Safic-Alcan story

For over 175 years, Safic-Alcan has developed innovative solutions for its principals and clients. Drawing on its considerable expertise in rubber, the group has expanded into other formulation industries while preserving its unique character, combining human connection, adaptability, and resilience.

Scroll through our history.

Hecht Frères et Cie is established in Paris and Hecht Brothers in London.
The Eiffel Tower is finished, two years after works began.
The company begins to distribute DuPont de Nemours' chemicals in France.
Safic-Alcan becomes exclusive distributor of Revertex.
Safic-Alcan embarks on production.
Production is given up; refocus on trading activities.
Fall of the Berlin wall.
Sale of the Natural products department to British group ED&F Man.
Safic-Alcan's leadership team and employees become majority shareholders in the company.
Safic-Alcan joins the United Nations Global Compact.
Safic-Alcan publishes its first sustainability report under the title “The Durable Link”.
With a newly formed Executive Committee, Safic-Alcan celebrates its 175th anniversary.

A history
of progress

From rubber trader
to speciality chemicals distributor

Since Safic-Alcan was founded in the middle of the 19th century, it has been led by a succession of strong personalities. With Myrtil and Ernest Hecht and then Emile, Alain and Maurice Alcan at the helm, the family business grew into one of the world's leading traders of tropical products. What set it apart was a willingness to continually adapt to the rapidly changing business climate.

Safic-Alcan genealogy
Myrtil Hecht
Ernest Hecht
Emile Alcan
Maurice Alcan
Martial Lecat

Today, although its methods and ideas have evolved, Safic-Alcan's ability to understand what the market wants remains unchanged. It was this insight that saw the company move away from its traditional trading business, taking on the role of distributor instead, and becoming the partner of choice for its clients and principals.

Entrepreneurial spirit
175 years

And counting


Committed to performing beyond the balance sheet, Safic-Alcan has set about positioning itself as the “durable link” connecting its principals and clients, so as to better respond to the challenges of the next 25 years.

Safic-Alcan's people are at the very core of our business. A highly motivated and competent group of experts, most of our employees are shareholders and are central to our versatility. Together, the group will continue to grow well into the future, while keeping people at the heart of our work.




More on our commitment to the future