History

Driving human progress for 350 years through our global roots with Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, and more than 40 years in the U.S.


Rooted in 350 Years of History

With a history of vibrant science and technology, our curiosity fueled the discovery of treatments for multiple sclerosis, infertility and cancer. That curiosity stems from our global company's DNA, which started 350 years ago and makes us part of the world's oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company.

This year, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany marks its 350th anniversary by celebrating curiosity. We work to answer some of the greatest human questions, and look forward to the next 350 years of scientific advancements.

A Look Back at Where It All Began

1668

It all started in 1668, when Friedrich Jacob Merck purchased the Angel Pharmacy (Engel-Apotheke) in Darmstadt, which would become the historic core of the company. The Angel Pharmacy exists to this day.

1816

In 1816, Emanuel Merck took over the Angel Pharmacy and initiated the transformation from a manual pharmacy craft to a research-based industrial company. He started the industrial-scale manufacture of his products, offered a collection of alkaloids for researchers and physicians, and established business relations in other European countries.

1887

In 1887, our company opened its own office in New York, which gave rise to the subsidiary Merck & Co. three years later. As a result of World War I, this subsidiary was expropriated in 1917 and has been an independent company ever since.

Today

Today, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany holds the global rights to the "Merck" name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Performance Materials.

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