$ 48.158 billion (FY 2016) 
$ 3.520 billion (FY 2016)
$ 4.404 billion (FY 2016)
$ 79.511 billion (FY 2016)
$ 27.229 billion (FY 2016)
Dow AgroSciences, LLC.
Union Carbide Corp.
Rohm and Haas
ANGUS Chemical Company
Dow Roofing Systems
The Dow Chemical Company, commonly referred to as Dow, is an American
multinational chemical corporation headquartered in Midland, Michigan,
United States, and the predecessor of the merged company DowDuPont. In
2017, it was the second-largest chemical manufacturer in the world by
revenue (after BASF) and as of February 2009, the third-largest
chemical company in the world by market capitalization (after
DuPont). It ranked second in the world by chemical production in
Dow manufactures plastics, chemicals, and agricultural products. With
a presence in about 160 countries, it employs about 54,000 people
worldwide. The company has seven different major operating
segments, with a wide variety of products made by each one. Dow's
2012 sales totaled approximately $57 billion. Dow has been called
the "chemical companies' chemical company" in that most of its
sales are to other industries rather than end-users. Dow sells
directly to end-users primarily in the human and animal health and
consumer products markets.
Dow is a member of the American Chemistry Council. The company tagline
On September 1, 2017 it merged with
DuPont to create
the world's largest chemical company in terms of sales.[citation
needed] In March 2018, it was announced that
Jeff Fettig will become
executive chairman of
DowDuPont on July 1, 2018, and Jim Fitterling
will become CEO of Dow Chemical on April 1, 2018.
1.1 Performance plastics
1.2 Performance chemicals
1.3 Water purification
1.5 Basic plastics
1.6 Basic chemicals
1.7 Hydrocarbons and energy
2.1 Early history
2.2 Diversification and expansion
2.3 Nuclear weapons
2.4 Vietnam War: napalm and Agent Orange
Dow Corning breast implants
2.6 Bhopal disaster
2.8 Tax evasion
2.9 Recent mergers, acquisitions and reorganization
2.9.1 1990s – transition from geographic alignment to global
Union Carbide merger
2.9.3 2006–2008 restructuring
22.214.171.124 Rohm & Haas Co. purchase
126.96.36.199 Accelerated implementation
188.8.131.52 Strategy interruption
2.9.4 2007 dismissal of senior executives
2.9.5 2014 – New operating segments
2.9.6 U.S. Gulf Coast investments
2.9.8 Merger with DuPont
2.10 Focus on higher margin business
2.11 Dioxin contamination
2.12 Sale of herbicide business
3 Environmental record
4 Board of directors
5 Major sponsorships
6 Major collaborations
6.1 Lab Safety Academy
6.2 Nature Conservancy
8 Subsidiaries and joint ventures
8.2 Current joint ventures
9 Notable employees
11 Further reading
12 External links
Dow is a large producer of plastics, including polystyrene,
polyurethane, polyethylene, polypropylene, and synthetic rubber. It is
also a major producer of ethylene oxide, various acrylates,
surfactants, and cellulose resins. It produces agricultural chemicals
including the pesticide
Lorsban and consumer products including
Styrofoam. Some Dow consumer products including Saran wrap, Ziploc
Scrubbing Bubbles were sold to S. C. Johnson & Son in
Performance plastics make up 25 percent of Dow's sales, with many
products designed for the automotive and construction industries. The
plastics include polyolefins such as polyethylene and polypropylene,
as well as polystyrene used to produce
Styrofoam insulating material.
Dow manufactures epoxy resin intermediates including bisphenol A and
epichlorohydrin. Saran resins and films are based on polyvinylidene
Chemicals (17 percent of sales) segment produces
chemicals and materials for water purification, pharmaceuticals, paper
coatings, paints and advanced electronics. Major product lines include
nitroparaffins, such as nitromethane, used in the pharmaceutical
industry and manufactured by ANGUS Chemical Company, a wholly
owned subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Co. Important polymers include
Dowex ion exchange resins, acrylic and polystyrene latex, as well as
Carbowax polyethylene glycols.
Specialty chemicals are used as
starting materials for production of agrochemicals and
Dow Water and Process Solutions (DW&PS) is a business unit which
manufactures Filmtec reverse osmosis membranes which are used to
purify water for human use in the Middle East. The technology was used
2000 Summer Olympics
2000 Summer Olympics and 2008 Summer Olympics.
Agricultural Sciences, or (Dow AgroSciences), provides 7 percent of
sales and is responsible for a range of insecticides (such as
Lorsban), herbicides and fungicides. Seeds from genetically modified
plants are also an important area of growth for the company. Dow
AgroSciences sells seeds commercially under the following brands:
Mycogen (grain corn, silage corn, sunflowers, alfalfa, and sorghum),
Atlas (soybean), PhytoGen (cotton) and Hyland Seeds in Canada (corn,
soybean, alfalfa, navy beans and wheat).
Basic plastics (26 percent of sales) end up in everything from diaper
liners to beverage bottles and oil tanks. Products are based on the
three major polyolefins – polystyrene (such as Styron resins),
polyethylene and polypropylene.
Basic chemicals (12 percent of sales) are used internally by Dow as
raw materials and are also sold worldwide. Markets include dry
cleaning, paints and coatings, snow and ice control and the food
industry. Major products include ethylene glycol, caustic soda,
chlorine, and vinyl chloride monomer (VCM, for making PVC). Ethylene
oxide and propylene oxide and the derived alcohols ethylene glycol and
propylene glycol are major feedstocks for the manufacture of plastics
such as polyurethane and PET.
Hydrocarbons and energy
The Hydrocarbons and Energy operating segment (13 percent of sales)
oversees energy management at Dow. Fuels and oil-based raw
materials are also procured. Major feedstocks for Dow are provided by
this group, including ethylene, propylene, 1,3-butadiene, benzene and
Dow Chemical Corporate headquarters in Midland
Dow was founded in 1897 by chemist Herbert Henry Dow, who invented a
new method of extracting the bromine that was trapped underground in
brine at Midland, Michigan. Dow originally sold only bleach and
potassium bromide, achieving a bleach output of 72 tons a day in 1902.
Early in the company's history, a group of British manufacturers tried
to drive Dow out of the bleach business by cutting prices. Dow
survived by also cutting its prices and, although losing about $90,000
in income, began to diversify its product line. In 1905, German
bromide producers began dumping bromides at low cost in the U.S. in an
effort to prevent Dow from expanding its sales of bromides in Europe.
Instead of competing directly for market share with the German
producers, Dow bought the cheap German-made bromides and shipped them
back to Europe. This undercut his German competitors. Even in its
early history, Dow set a tradition of rapidly diversifying its product
line. Within twenty years, Dow had become a major producer of
agricultural chemicals, elemental chlorine, phenol and other
dyestuffs, and magnesium metal.
During World War I, Dow Chemical supplied many war materials the
United States had previously imported from Germany. Dow produced
magnesium for incendiary flares, monochlorobenzene and phenol for
explosives, and bromine for medicines and tear gas. By 1918, 90
percent of Dow Chemical production was geared towards the war
effort. At this time, Dow created the diamond logo that is still
used by the company. After the war, Dow continued research in
magnesium, and developed refined automobile pistons that produced more
speed and better fuel efficiency. The Dowmetal pistons were used
heavily in racing vehicles, and the 1921 winner of the Indianapolis
500 used the Dowmetal pistons in his vehicle.
In the 1930s, Dow began producing plastic resins, which would grow to
become one of the corporation's major businesses. Its first plastic
products were ethylcellulose, made in 1935, and polystyrene, made in
Diversification and expansion
From 1940 to 1941, Dow built its first plant at Freeport, Texas, in
order to produce magnesium extracted from seawater rather than
underground brine. The Freeport plant is now home to Dow's largest
site – and one of the largest integrated chemical manufacturing
sites in the world. The site grew quickly – with power, chlorine,
caustic soda and ethylene also soon in production. Growth of this
business made Dow a strategically important business during World War
II, as magnesium became important in fabricating lightweight parts for
aircraft. Based on 2002–2003 data, the Freeport plants (known as
Texas Operations internally) produced 27 billion pounds of product –
or 21 percent of Dow's global production. In 1942 Dow began its
foreign expansion with the formation of Dow Chemical of Canada in
Sarnia, Ontario to produce styrene for use in styrene-butadiene
synthetic rubber. Also during the war, Dow and Corning began their
joint venture, Dow Corning, to produce silicones for military and,
later, civilian use.
The "Ethyl-Dow Chemical Co." plant at "Kure's Beach" NC, the only
plant on the East Coast producing bromine from seawater, was attacked
by a German U-boat in 1942.
In the post-war era, Dow began expanding outside of North America,
founding its first overseas subsidiary in Japan in 1952, and in
several other nations soon thereafter. Based largely on its growing
plastics business, Dow opened a consumer products division beginning
with Saran wrap in 1953. Based on its growing chemicals and plastics
businesses, Dow's sales exceeded $1 billion in 1964, $2 billion in
1971, and $10 billion in 1980.
From 1951 to 1975, Dow managed the
Rocky Flats Plant
Rocky Flats Plant near Denver,
Colorado. Rocky Flats was a nuclear weapons production facility that
produced plutonium triggers for hydrogen bombs.
Main article: Rocky Flats Plant
Contamination from fires and radioactive waste leakage plagued the
facility under Dow's management. In 1957 a fire burned plutonium dust
in the facility and sent radioactive particles into the
The Department of Energy transferred management of the facility to
Rockwell International in 1975. In 1990, nearby residents filed a
class action lawsuit against Dow and Rockwell for environmental
contamination of the area; the case was litigated in federal court. In
2008 a federal judge ordered Dow and Rockwell to pay a combined $925
million in damages to the plaintiffs. However, in September 2010,
the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the decision.
According to the Appellate Court, the owners of the 12,000 properties
in the class-action area had not proved that their properties were
damaged or they had suffered bodily injury.
Vietnam War: napalm and Agent Orange
United States military dropped napalm bombs on North Vietnam
during the Vietnam War. Dow was one of several manufacturers who began
producing the napalm B compound under government contract from 1965.
After experiencing protests and negative publicity, the other
suppliers discontinued manufacturing the product, leaving Dow as the
sole provider. The company said that it carefully considered its
position, and decided, as a matter of principle, "its first obligation
was to the government". Despite a boycott of its products by
anti-war groups and harassment of recruiters on some college campuses,
Dow continued to manufacture napalm B until 1969. The USA
continued to drop napalm bombs on North Vietnam until 1973.
Main article: Agent Orange
Agent Orange, a chemical defoliant containing dioxin, was also
manufactured by Dow in New Plymouth, New Zealand, and in the United
States for use by the
British military during the Malayan Emergency
and the U.S. military during the Vietnam War. In 2005, a lawsuit was
filed by Vietnamese victims of
Agent Orange against Dow and Monsanto
Co., which also supplied
Agent Orange to the military. The lawsuit was
Dow Corning breast implants
Dow Corning breast implants controversy
A major manufacturer of silicone breast implants,
Dow Corning (Dow
Chemical's Joint Venture with Corning Inc.) was sued for personal
damages caused by ruptured implants. On October 6, 2005, all such
cases pending in the District Court against the company were
dismissed. A number of large, independent reviews of the scientific
literature, including the
Institute of Medicine
Institute of Medicine in the United States,
have subsequently found that silicone breast implants do not cause
breast cancers or any identifiable systemic disease.
Main article: Bhopal disaster
Union Carbide became a subsidiary of Dow Chemical in 2001. The Bhopal
disaster of 1984 occurred at a pesticide plant owned by Union Carbide
India Ltd., a subsidiary of Union Carbide, 17 years before Dow
Chemical Co.'s acquisition. A gas cloud containing methyl isocyanate
and other chemicals spread to the neighborhoods near the plant where
more than half a million people were exposed to it. More than 27 years
after the event, the actual number of fatalities is still unknown.
The official immediate death toll was 2,259 and the government of
Madhya Pradesh has confirmed a total of 3,787 deaths related to the
gas release. Others estimate 3,000 died within weeks and another 8,000
have since died from gas-related diseases. There are wide variations
in the estimated number of individuals permanently disabled by the
event. By one independent estimate, 40,000 individuals were left
permanently disabled, maimed, or suffering from serious illness as a
result of the disaster. A government affidavit in 2006 stated that the
leak caused 558,125 injuries, including 38,478 temporary partial
injuries and approximately 3,900 severely and permanently disabling
Union Carbide was sued by the
Government of India
Government of India and
agreed to an out-of-court settlement of US$470 million in 1989. In
2010 eight former executives of
Union Carbide India Ltd. were found
guilty of death by negligence. Activists sought to have Dow Chemical
held responsible for the ongoing cleanup of the site, now under
the control of the state government of Madhya Pradesh.
Until the late 1970s, Dow produced
a soil fumigant, and nematicide, sold under the names the Nemagon and
Fumazone. Plantation workers who alleged that they became sterile or
were stricken with other maladies subsequently sued both Dow and Dole
in Latin American courts. The cases were marred by extensive fraud,
including the falsification of test results and the recruitment of
plaintiffs who had never worked at Dole plantations. While
Nicaraguan courts awarded the plaintiffs over $600 million in damages,
they have been unable to collect any payment from the companies. A
group of plaintiffs then sued in the United States, and, on November
5, 2007, a Los Angeles jury awarded them $3.2 million. Dole and Dow
vowed to appeal the decision. On April 23, 2009 a Los Angeles
judge threw out two cases against Dole and Dow due to fraud and
extortion by lawyers in Nicaragua recruiting fraudulent plaintiffs to
make claims against the company. The ruling casts doubt on $2
billion in judgments in similar lawsuits.
In February 2013 a federal court rejected two tax shelter transactions
entered into by Dow that created approximately $1 billion in tax
deductions between 1993–2003. In the stated opinion, the Court
termed the transactions "schemes that were designed to exploit
perceived weaknesses in the tax code and not designed for legitimate
business reasons." The schemes were created by
Goldman Sachs and the
law firm of King & Spalding, and involved creating a partnership
that Dow operated out of its European headquarters in
Switzerland. Dow stated that it had paid all tax assessments
with interest. The case was a lawsuit against the Internal Revenue
Service seeking a refund of the taxes paid. The case was appealed
to the 5th Circuit court, where Dow's claims were again rejected. Dow
has petitioned for an en banc hearing by the 5th Circuit, arguing that
the decision was contrary to established case law.
Recent mergers, acquisitions and reorganization
1990s – transition from geographic alignment to global business
In the early 1990s, Dow embarked on a major structural
reorganization. The former reporting hierarchy was geographically
based, with the regional president reporting directly to the overall
company president and CEO. The new organization combines the same
businesses from different sites, irrespective of which region they
belong (i.e. the vice president for
Polystyrene is now in charge of
these plants all over the world).
Union Carbide merger
At the beginning of August 1999, Dow agreed to purchase Union Carbide
Corp. (UCC) for $9.3 billion in stock. At the time, the combined
company was the second largest chemical company, behind DuPont.
This led to protests from some stockholders, who feared that Dow did
not disclose potential liabilities related to the Bhopal disaster.
William S. Stavropoulos served as president and chief executive
officer of Dow from 1995 to 2000, then again from 2002 to 2004. He
relinquished his board seat on April 1, 2006, having been a director
since 1990 and chairman since 2000. During his first tenure, he led
the purchase of UCC which proved controversial, as it was blamed for
poor results under his successor as CEO Mike Parker. Parker was
dismissed and Stavropoulos returned from retirement to lead
On August 31, 2006, Dow announced that it planned to close facilities
at five locations:
Sarnia, Ontario was Dow's first manufacturing site in Canada, located
in the Chemical Valley area alongside other petrochemical
companies. In 1942, the Canadian government invited Dow to build a
plant there to produce styrene (an essential raw material used to make
synthetic rubber for World War II). Dow then built a polystyrene plant
in 1947. In August 1985, the site accidentally discharged 11,000
litres of perchloroethylene (a carcinogenic dry cleaning chemical)
into the St. Clair River, which gained infamy in the media as "The
Blob", and Dow Canada was charged by the Ministry of the
Environment. Up to the early 1990s, Dow Canada's headquarters
was located at the Modeland Centre, and a new three-story complex
called the River Centre was opened up on the Sarnia site in 1993 to
house Research and Development. Since then, several plants (Dow
terminology for a production unit) on the site have been dismantled,
particularly the Basic
Chemicals including Chlor Alkali unit whose
closure was announced in 1991 and carried out in 1994 which affected
nearly half of the site's employees. The Dow Canada headquarters were
Calgary, Alberta in 1996, and the Modeland Centre was sold to
Lambton County and the City of Sarnia with Dow leasing some office
space. The Dow Fitness Centre was donated to the
Sarnia-Lambton in 2003. The Sarnia Site's workforce declined from a
peak of 1600 personnel in the early 1990s to about 400 by 2002. In
the late 1990s, land on the site was sold to
TransAlta which built a
natural gas power plant that begun operations in 2002 to supply
electricity to the remaining Sarnia site plants and facilities, so
that Dow could close its older less efficient steam plant (originally
coal fired and later burning natural gas). On August 31, 2006, Dow
announced that the entire Sarnia site would cease operations at the
end of 2008. The Sarnia site had been supplied with ethylene through a
pipeline from western Canada but BP officials warned Dow that
shipments from the pipeline had to be suspended for safety reasons,
and the loss of an affordable supply for the low density polyethylene
plant rendered all the other operations at the site
non-competitive. The Low-Density
Polyethylene and Polystyrene
units closed in 2006, followed by the
Latex Unit in 2008, and finally
Propylene Oxide Derivatives Unit on April 2009. Dow afterward
focused its efforts on the environmental remediation of the vacant
site, which was sold to TransAlta. The former site has since been
renamed the Bluewater Energy Park, with the River Centre remaining
available for lease.
One plant at its site in Barry (South Wales), a triple string STR
styrene polymer production unit. Integral in the company's development
of the super high melt foam specific polymers & Styron A-Tech high
gloss, high impact polymers.
One plant at its site in
Porto Marghera (Venice), Italy.
Two plants at its site in Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta, Canada.
On November 2, 2006, Dow and Izolan, the leading Russian producer of
polyurethane systems, formed the joint venture Dow-Izolan iand built a
manufacturing facility in the city of Vladimir. Also in 2006, Dow
formed the Business Process Service Center (BPSC).
In December 2007, Dow announced a series of moves to revamp the
company. A December 4 announcement revealed that Dow planned to exit
the automotive sealers business in 2008 or 2009. Within several
weeks, Dow also announced the formation of a joint venture, later
named K-Dow, with Petrochemical Industries Co. (PIC), a subsidiary of
Kuwait Petroleum Corporation. In exchange for $9.5 billion, the
agreement included Dow selling 50-percent of its interest in five
global businesses: polyethylene, polypropylene and polycarbonate
plastics, and ethylenamines and ethanolamines. The agreement was
terminated by PIC on December 28, 2008.
Rohm & Haas Co. purchase
On July 10, 2008, Dow agreed to purchase all of the common equity
Rohm and Haas
Rohm and Haas Co. for $15.4 billion, which equated to $78
per share. The buyout was to be financed with equity investments
of $3 billion by
Berkshire Hathaway Inc.
Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and $1 billion by the Kuwait
Investment Authority. The purpose of the deal was to move Dow
Chemical further into specialty chemicals, which offer higher profit
margins than the commodities market and are more difficult to enter
for the competition. The purchase has been criticized
by many on
Wall Street who believe Dow Chemical overpaid (about a 75
percent premium on the previous day's market capital) to acquire the
company; however, the high bid was needed to ward off competing bids
from BASF. The transaction to purchase the outstanding interest of
Rohm and Haas
Rohm and Haas closed on April 1, 2009.
On December 8, 2008, Dow announced that due to the 2008 economic
crisis, it would accelerate job cuts resulting from its
reorganization. The announced plan included closing 20 facilities,
temporarily idling 180 plants, and eliminating 5,000 full-time jobs
(about 11 percent of its work-force) and 6,000 contractor
Citing the global recession that began in the latter half of 2008, the
Kuwaiti government scuttled the K-Dow partnership on December 28,
2008. The collapse of the deal dealt a blow to Dow CEO Andrew
Liveris' vision of restructuring the company to make it less cyclical.
However, on January 6, 2009 Dow Chemical announced they were in talks
with other parties who could be interested in a major joint venture
with the company. Dow also announced they that it would be seeking
to recover damages related to the failed joint venture from PIC.
After the K-Dow deal collapsed, some speculated that the company would
not complete the Rohm & Haas transaction, as the cash from the
former transaction was expected to fund the latter. The deal was
expected to be finalized in early 2009 and was to form one of the
nation's largest specialty chemicals firms in the U.S.
However, on January 26, 2009 the company informed
Rohm and Haas
Rohm and Haas that
it would be unable to complete the transaction by the agreed upon
deadline. Dow cited a deteriorated credit market and the collapse
of the K-Dow Petrochemical deal as reasons for failing to timely close
the merger. Around the same time, CEO
Andrew Liveris said a first-
time cut to the company's 97- year- old dividend policy was not "off
the table." On February 12, 2009, the company declared a quarterly
dividend of $0.15/share, down from $0.42 the previous quarter. The cut
represented the first time the company had diminished its investor
payout in the dividend's 97-year history.
The transaction to purchase the outstanding interest of Rohm and Haas
closed on April 1, 2009. After negotiating the sale of preferred
stock with Rohm and Hass' two largest stockholders and extending their
one-year bridge loan an additional year, the company purchased Rohm
and Haas for $15 billion ($78 a share) on March 9, 2009.
2007 dismissal of senior executives
On April 12, 2007, Dow dismissed two senior executives for
"unauthorized discussions with third parties about the potential sale
of the company". The two figures are executive vice president Romeo
Kreinberg, and director and former CFO J. Pedro Reinhard. Dow claims
they were secretly in contact with JPMorgan Chase; at the same time, a
story surfaced in Britain's
Sunday Express regarding a possible
leveraged buyout of Dow. The two executives have since filed lawsuits
claiming they were fired for being a threat to CEO Liveris, and that
the allegations were concocted as a pretext. However, in June 2008
Dow Chemical and the litigants announced a settlement in which
Kreinberg and Reinhard dropped their lawsuits and admitted taking part
in discussions "which were not authorized by, nor disclosed to, Dow's
board concerning a potential LBO" and acknowledged that it would have
been appropriate to have informed the CEO and board of the talks.
2014 – New operating segments
In the fourth quarter of 2014, Dow announced new operating segments in
response to its previously announced leadership changes. The company
stated it would give further support to its end-market orientation and
increase its alignment to Dow’s key value chains – ethylene and
U.S. Gulf Coast investments
Several plants on the Gulf Coast of the US have been in development
since 2013, as part of Dow's transition away from naphtha. Dow
estimates the facilities will employ about 3000 people, and 5000
people during construction. The plants will manufacture materials
for several of its growing segments, including hygiene and medical,
transportation, electrical and telecommunications, packaging, consumer
durables and sports and leisure.
Dow’s new propane dehydrogenation (PDH) facility in Freeport, Texas,
is expected to come online in 2015, with a first 750000 metric tonne
per year unit, while other units could become available in the
future. An ethylene production facility is expected to start
up in the first half of 2017.
On March 27, 2015, Dow and
Olin Corporation announced that the boards
of directors of both companies unanimously approved a definitive
agreement under which Dow will separate a significant portion of its
chlorine business and merge that new entity with Olin in a transaction
that will create an industry leader, with revenues approaching $7
billion. Olin, the new partnership, became the largest chlorine
producer in the world.
Merger with DuPont
Main article: DowDuPont
On December 11, 2015, Dow announced that it would merge with DuPont,
in an all-stock deal. The combined company, which will be known as
DowDuPont, will have an estimated value of $130 billion, be equally
held by the shareholders of both companies, and maintain their
Michigan and Delaware respectively. Within two years
of the merger's closure,
DowDuPont would be split into three separate
public companies, focusing on the agriculture, chemical, and specialty
product industries. Estimates are it would take up to two years for
the tax-free split. Shareholders of each company will hold 50% of the
combined company. Dow Chemical CEO
Andrew N. Liveris
Andrew N. Liveris would become
executive chairman of the new entity, while
DuPont CEO Edward D. Breen
would become CEO. In January 2017, the merger was pushed back a
second time pending regulatory approvals.
The same day, Dow also announced that it had reached a deal to acquire
Corning Incorporated's stake in their joint venture
Dow Corning for
$4.8 billion in cash and a roughly 40% stake in Hemlock Semiconductor
Corporation. The sale is expected to close in early 2016.
Commentators have noted that the deal is likely to face antitrust
scrutiny in several countries.
Focus on higher margin business
Dow Chemical has begun to shed commodity chemical businesses, such as
those making the basic ingredients for grocery bags and plastic pipes,
because their profit margins only average 5–10%. Dow is, as of 2015,
focusing resources on specialty chemicals that earn margins of at
least 20%. This is in line with its restructuring, together
with reducing debt, and expecting to raise more than $11 billion from
asset sales by mid-2016.
Dow Chemical works in Kings Lynn.
See also: Dioxin controversy
Areas along Michigan's Tittabawassee River, which runs within yards of
Dow's main plant in Midland, were found to contain elevated levels of
the cancer-causing chemical dioxin in November 2006. The dioxin was
located in sediments two to ten feet below the surface of the river,
and, according to the New York Times, "there is no indication that
residents or workers in the area are directly exposed to the
sites". However, people who often eat fish from the river had
slightly elevated levels of dioxin in their blood. In July 2007,
Dow reached an agreement with the Environmental Protection Agency to
remove 50,000 cubic yards (38,000 m3) of sediment from three
areas of the riverbed and levees of the river that had been found to
be contaminated. In November 2008, Dow Chemical along with the
United States Environmental Protection Agency and
of Environmental Quality agreed to establish a
Superfund to address
dioxin cleanup of the Tittabawassee River,
Saginaw River and Saginaw
Sale of herbicide business
In December 2015, Dow
Chemicals agreed to sell its global herbicide
business as low crop prices prompted consolidation in the agricultural
In 2003, Dow agreed to pay $2 million, the largest penalty ever in a
pesticide case, to the state of New York for making illegal
safety claims related to its pesticides. The New York Attorney
General's Office stated that
Dow AgroSciences had violated a 1994
agreement with the State of New York to stop advertisements making
safety claims about its pesticide products. Dow stated that it was not
admitting to any wrongdoing, and that it was agreeing to the
settlement to avoid a costly court battle.
According to the
United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),
Dow has some responsibility for 96 of the United States' Superfund
toxic waste sites, placing it in 10th place by number of
sites. One of these, a former UCC uranium and
vanadium processing facility near Uravan, Colorado, is listed as the
sole responsibility of Dow. The rest are shared with
numerous other companies. Fifteen sites have been listed by the EPA as
finalized (cleaned up) and 69 are listed as "construction complete",
meaning that all required plans and equipment for cleanup are in
In 2007, the chemical industry trade association – the American
Chemical Council – gave Dow an award of 'Exceptional Merit' in
recognition of longstanding energy efficiency and conservation
efforts. Between 1995 and 2005, Dow reduced energy intensity (BTU per
pound produced) by 22 percent. This is equivalent to saving enough
electricity to power eight million US homes for a year. The same
year, Dow subsidiary, Dow Agrosciences, won a United Nations Montreal
Protocol Innovators Award for its efforts in helping replace methyl
bromide – a compound identified as contributing to the depletion of
the ozone layer. In addition, Dow Agrosciences won an EPA "Best of the
Best" Stratospheric Ozone Protection Award. The United States
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) named Dow as a 2008 Energy Star
Partner of the Year for excellence in energy management and reductions
in greenhouse gas emissions.
Board of directors
The members of the board of directors of The Dow Chemical Co. were,
prior to the closing of the merger with
DuPont on September 1,
Ajay Banga –
President & CEO MasterCard
Jacqueline Barton – chemistry professor, California Institute of
James A. Bell
James A. Bell – former
President and CFO Boeing
Richard K. Davis -
Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer
of U.S. Bancorp
Jeff Fettig –
Chairman and CEO, Whirlpool Corp.
Andrew N. Liveris
Andrew N. Liveris –
Chairman and CEO, The Dow Chemical Co.
Mark Loughridge - Former Chief Financial Officer, IBM
Raymond J. Milchovich - Lead Director of Nucor and Former
CEO of Foster Wheeler AG
Robert S. (Steve) Miller - International Automotive Components (IAC)
Paul Polman – CEO
Unilever PLC and Unilever
Dennis H. Reilley – Former chairman
James Ringler – Vice chairman, Illinois Tool Works Inc.
Ruth G. Shaw – former
President and CEO, Duke Energy Corp.
In July 2010, Dow became a worldwide partner of the Olympic Games. The
sponsorship extends to 2020.
In September 2004, Dow obtained the naming rights to the Saginaw
County Event Center in Saginaw, Michigan; the center is now called the
Dow Event Center. The
Saginaw Spirit (of the Ontario Hockey League)
plays at the Center, which also hosts events such as professional
wrestling and live theater.
In October 2006, Dow bought the naming rights to the stadium used by
the Great Lakes Loons, a Single-A minor league baseball team located
in its hometown of Midland, Michigan. The stadium is called Dow
Diamond. The Dow Foundation played a key role in bringing the Loons to
In 2010, Dow signed a $100m (£63m) 10-year deal with the
International Olympic Committee
International Olympic Committee and agreed to sponsor the £7m Olympic
Stadium wrap. Dow also sponsors Austin Dillon’s #3 Chevrolet in
the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.
Lab Safety Academy
On May 20, 2013, Dow launched the Dow Lab Safety Academy, a website
that includes a large collection of informational videos and resources
that demonstrate best practices in laboratory safety. The goal of
the website is to improve awareness of safety practices in academic
research laboratories and to help the future chemical workforce
develop a safety mindset. As such, the Dow Lab Safety Academy is
primarily geared toward university students. However, Dow has made the
content open to all, including those already employed in the chemical
industry. The Dow Lab Safety Academy is also available through the
Safety and Chemical Engineering Education program, an affiliate of
American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE); and The Campbell
Institute, an organization focusing on environment, health and safety
The Dow Lab Safety Academy is one component of Dow’s larger
laboratory safety initiative launched in early 2012, following a
report from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board that highlighted the
potential hazards associated with conducting research at chemical
laboratories in academic institutions. Seeking to share industry best
practices with academia, Dow partnered with several U.S. research
universities to improve safety awareness and practices in the
departments of chemistry, chemical engineering, engineering and
materials. Through the pilot programs with
U.C. Santa Barbara
U.C. Santa Barbara (UCSB),
University of Minnesota, and Pennsylvania State University, Dow worked
with graduate students and faculty to identify areas of improvement
and develop a culture of laboratory safety.
In January 2011, The
Nature Conservancy and The Dow Chemical Co.
announced a collaboration to integrate the value of nature into
business decision-making. Scientists, engineers, and economists from
Nature Conservancy and Dow are working together at three pilot
sites (North America, Latin America, and TBD) to implement and
refine models that support corporate decision-making related to the
value and resources nature provides. Those ecosystem services include
water, land, air, oceans and a variety of plant and animal life. These
sites will serve as a “living laboratories”, to validate and test
methods and models so they can be used to inform more sustainable
business decisions at Dow and hopefully influence the decision-making
and business practices of other companies.
Andrew N. Liveris
Andrew N. Liveris called 2005 the company's "best year ever"
with operating profits of $5.4 billion, a jump of 56.5 percent
compared with the previous year.
Net income rose more than 60
percent to $4.5 billion, on sales of $46.3 billion. 2006 looks as if
it could be even better, with first-quarter net earnings of $1.2
billion. All this is occurring in the context of adverse
operating conditions, caused by high energy and raw material costs,
and the effects of two damaging hurricanes.
Liveris supports the vertically integrated approach used at Dow, which
produces everything from basic chemical feedstocks to high value
products such as pesticides and reverse osmosis membranes. These
value-adding product chains, along with Dow's wide product range, help
the company to weather the storms of the global economy. Despite this,
high energy and feedstock costs may begin to take their toll,
particularly if global demand begins to fall just as supply is rising.
Like many chemical companies, Dow is facing pressures of regulation in
the US and Europe, particularly as the EU introduces its new REACH
policy. Litigation costs in the US taken over by Dow as a result of
its 2001 takeover of
Union Carbide also remain a concern.
For these reasons, Dow is looking to the Middle East and Asia for new
projects. In Kuwait, Dow is constructing (with PIC of Kuwait) a new
world-scale ethane cracker for production of ethylene, along with an
ethylene oxide/ethylene glycol plant and (for 2008) a facility for
production of aromatic hydrocarbons. In Oman, the company is working
Oman government to build a new world-scale polyethylene
plant. In China, the company is collaborating with
Shenhua Group (the
country's largest coal mining company) to improve catalyst efficiency
to allow viable conversion of coal to olefins. Dow is also seeking to
expand its R&D presence in Asia, adding 600 jobs in
the end of 2007, and the company may open up a large R&D center in
The joint ventures planned for Asia are typical of Dow's "asset-light"
approach, which works by offering a combination of intellectual
property and money in exchange for a share in a world-scale production
facility. At the same time, Dow is considering selling a share of some
of its existing assets in order to free up cash.
Subsidiaries and joint ventures
Dow Chemical has a number of subsidiaries and joint ventures.
Arabian Chemical Company (Latex) Ltd.
Arabian Chemical Company (Polystyrene) Limited
Battleground Water Company
Biotechnology Research and Development Corporation
Blue Cube Holding LLC (and affiliates)
CanStates Holdings Inc. (and affiliate)
CD Polymers Inc.
Centen Ag Inc. (and affiliates)
Chemars III LLC
Chemtech II L.P.
Clean Filtration Technologies LLC
DC Partnership Management Inc. (and affiliate)
Diamond Capital Management Inc.
Dow Business Services LLC
Dow Capital International LLC
Dow Chemical (China) Investment Company Limited (and affiliates)
Dow Chemical (Singapore) Private Limited (and affiliates)
Dow Chemical China Holdings Pte. Ltd.
Dow Chemical Delaware Corp. (and affiliates)
Dow Chemical International Ltd. (and affiliates)
Dow Chemical Singapore Holdings Pte. Ltd.
Dow Chemical Taiwan Limited
Dow Corning Corporation
Dow AgroSciences, LLC.
Union Carbide Corporation
Rohm and Haas
ANGUS Chemical Co.
Current joint ventures
EQUATE Petrochemical Co. K.S.C.
Kuwait Olefins Company K.S.C.
Styrene Company K.S.C.
TKOC – JV between Dow and Petrochemical Industries Company
Map Ta Phut Olefins Company Limited
Sadara Chemical Company – JV between Saudi Aramco and Dow Chemical
Dow-Mitsui Chlor-Alkali LLC – JV between Mitsui & Co. and Dow
George Becker, former vice president of the AFL-CIO, and president of
the United Steelworkers; worked at a Dow's aluminum rolling mill in
Madison, Illinois, where he was a shop steward.
Buddy Burris, professional football player with the Green Bay Packers;
worked for Dow following his football career.
Norman F. Carnahan, chemical engineer; worked at Dow's Plaquemines
Parish, Louisiana division from 1965 to 1968.
Sven Trygve Falck, Norwegian engineer, businessperson and politician;
Dow engineer in Texas from 1967 to 1970.
Larry Garner, Louisiana blues musician; worked at Dow's Baton Rouge,
Bettye Washington Greene, first African-American female chemist
employed at Dow; began working in 1965 at the E.C. Britton Lab.
Alexandre Hohagen, vice president for Latin America and US Hispanics
at Facebook; former public relations manager for Dow Chemical
Zdravko Ježić, Olympic silver medalist; worked for Dow in Texas on
the development of urethane and oxide polymers.
Claude-André Lachance, youngest person elected to the Canadian House
of Commons (prior to 2011); director of public affairs for Dow
Ray McIntire, inventor of styrofoam; began working for Dow in 1940 and
became a research director.
Fred McLafferty, chemist who pioneered the technique of gas
chromatography-mass spectrometry; began working at Dow's organic
chemistry research laboratory in
Midland, Michigan in the 1950s.
John Moolenaar, member of the
Michigan Senate and
Michigan House of
Representatives; worked as a chemist for Dow.
George Andrew Olah, recipient of 1994 Nobel Prize in Chemistry;
employed at Dow's Sarnia, Canada plant in the late 1950s.
Forrest Parry, inventor of the magnetic stripe card; worked for Dow in
Roy A. Periana, American organometallic chemist; worked for Dow at
Abu Ammaar Yasir Qadhi, conservative American Islamic cleric; worked
for Dow after obtaining a chemical engineering degree from the
University of Houston.
Abraham Quintanilla, Jr., singer-songwriter; former shipping clerk at
Freeport, Texas facility.[self-published source]
Sheldon Roberts, semiconductor pioneer who helped found Silicon
Valley; former technical researcher at Dow.
Alexander Shulgin, chemist and pharmacologist credited with
introducing the drug
MDMA ("ecstasy") to psychologists in the late
1970s; worked for Dow in the 1960s, where he invented Zectran, the
first biodegradable insecticide.
Mary P. Sinclair, environmental activist; former technical researcher
Huimin Zhao, Centennial Endowed Chair of Chemical and Bio-Molecular
Engineering at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign; project
leader at Dow's Industrial Biotechnology Laboratory.
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History of Dow video
Dow Chemical Corporate Officers
Greenpeace Sues Dow Chemical for Corporate Espionage – video report
by Democracy Now!
Dow Chemical Co.
Corporate Directors (selected):
Jacqueline K. Barton
Geoffery E. Merszei
James A. Bell
Jeff M. Fettig
Ruth G. Shaw
John B. Hess
Assets & Products: