Sterling Drug - Wikipedia

The Company was established in 1901 (then called Neuralgyline Co.) in Wheeling, West Virginia, by Albert H. Diebold and William E. Weiss, a pharmacist.[2][citation needed] At the end of World War I in 1918, Sterling purchased…
the US assets of a German company now known as Bayer AG for US$5.3 million. This purchase was directed under the Alien Property Custodian Act. In 1919, Sterling sold its dye division for $2.5 million to the Grasselli Chemical Company (based in Linden, New Jersey), which
employed many former Bayer personnel.

A 1920 agreement between Sterling and Bayer was about selling aspirin in the Latin American markets: the profit would be shared fifty-fifty, with Bayer supplying the pharmaceutical and selling mainly via Sterlings salesmen. In 1923, another
momentous contract was negotiated: 50% of the profits earned by Sterling's subsidiary Winthrop Chemical, was given to the German Bayer company, which in turn granted licences for new drugs and supported with technical expertise how to produce them. Later, this was turned into a
50% share in ownership.[4] The American Bayer, owned by Sterling, retained the rights to use the "Bayer" brand for selling aspirin in the US, the UK and the Commonwealth.[5] In 1923 Sterling purchased a 25% interest in The Centaur Company, manufacturer of Charles Henry
Fletcher's, Fletcher's Castoria.

An investigation by US Food and Drug Administration and the findings resulted in actions. The incident was influential in the introduction of Good Manufacturing Practices for drugs.[
In 1967, Sterling Drug acquired Lehn & Fink, the makers of Lysol, Resolve, and d-CON. In 1974, Sterling opened a manufacturing plant in McPherson, Kansas. The various companies which would eventually acquire Sterling chose to keep the factory open.
In 1988, Sterling was acquired by Eastman Kodak for $5.1 billion.[8][9] In 1993, Eastman Kodak/Sterling Winthrop partnered with a French pharmaceutical company Elf Sanofi (now known as Sanofi Aventis).
Bayer was a losing bidder for the purchase of Sterling Winthrop, but in September 1994, it purchased the over the counter division of Sterling Winthrop in the US, Canada and Puerto Rico from SmithKline Beecham for $1 billion. Bayer also re-acquired the brand rights to the "Bayer
Aspirin" name it had lost because of World War I.[14]
Spinoffs from the sale of Sterling include Starwin Products, created in 1987 from Sterling's original branch in Ghana. The Lehn & Fink division was acquired by Reckitt & Colman (now Reckitt Benckiser) at the time of the deal.[
On April 28, 1967, the company's disparate brands and products were unified under the Elf brand, Essence et Lubrifiants de France[citation needed]. Elf was the first company to pioneer a completely synthetic racing oil.
In 1973, the subsidiary SNPA set up a pharmaceuticals
subsidiary called Sanofi and acquired the pharmaceutical groups Labaz, Castaigne, and Robilliart, and also bought interests in a cosmetics company.

In 1993 Elf was awarded the exclusive contract to the Iraqi oil fields by Iraqi leader Saddam al-Tikriti.[2] In 1996 the French
government sold its stake, retaining a golden share. In 2000 Elf Aquitaine merged with Total Fina to form TotalFinaElf, which changed its name to Total in 2003.

Elf Aquitaine spent millions of dollars in the 1979 Great Oil Sniffer Hoax to develop a new "gravity wave-based oil
detection system", which was later revealed to be a scam,

2) Elf was founded in France in 1966 under the presidency of Charles de Gaulle. It soon became the most influential company in the country and its business operations became (too) intricately linked with the French
foreign policy. The company is now publicly-owned and has merged to form TotalFinaElf. The latter is contesting the allegations and seeks to differentiate the past behaviour of those on trial with its present management.
But the four-month trial, which had France riveted with its tales of political graft and sumptuous living, was also that of a system of state-sanctioned sleaze that flourished in France for years: successive politicians saw the country's state-owned multinationals not just as
undercover foreign policy tools, but as a convenient source of ready cash to keep friends happy and enemies quiet. In their 1,045-page indictment and a further 44,000 pages of documents, the investigating magistrates described in detail "a large number of operations carried out
on the margins of normal functioning of the group's structures, and destined... to collect assets off the books". Many of the missing millions were paid out in illegal "royalties" to various African leaders and their families.

Illegal commissions were also paid to businessmen
and third-party associates to smooth Elf's business dealings closer to home: about £30m was paid out "under the counter" in the company's 1992 acquisition of the Leuna refinery in east Germany.
Among those sentenced yesterday were Nadhmi Auchi, an Iraqi-born British billionaire,
who was fined €2m over a 1992 transaction with Elf, and Dieter Holzer, a German businessman, who was accused of taking kickbacks on the Leuna deal, and given 15 months in jail and a fine of €1.5m.

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