The Info List - Fisons

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plc was a British multinational pharmaceutical, scientific instruments and horticultural chemicals company headquartered in Ipswich, United Kingdom. It was listed on the London Stock Exchange and was once a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index. It was acquired by Rhone-Poulenc
in 1995.


1 History 2 Operations 3 Sponsorship 4 See also 5 References 6 External links

History[edit] The business was established by Edward Packard, one of the first to manufacture superphosphate derived from coprolites, in 1843.[1] In 1863 he was joined in business by his son, also named Edward, who was instrumental in developing the business and rationalising the United Kingdom's fertiliser industry. The business was incorporated in 1895 under the name of Edward Packard and Company Limited.[1] In 1919 it bought a fertiliser business founded by James Fison of Thetford
in 1808 and in 1929 the parent company's name was changed to Packard and James Fison (Thetford) Limited to reflect the acquisition.[1]

Hiller UH-12
Hiller UH-12
helicopter used in 1955 by Fison-Airwork to demonstrate the use of aerial crop spraying

The Company formally changed its name to the shorter Fisons
Ltd in 1942.[1] During the 1950s, Fisons
promoted the spraying of crops utilising helicopters. Fisons
owned parts of the Somerset Levels, where they extracted peat. In 1970 one of their staff, Ray Sweet, discovered the remains of a timber trackway. It has been dated to 3807 or 3806 BC,[2] and is now known as the Sweet Track. A portion is now in the collection of the British Museum.[3] In the early 1980s the company decided to focus on pharmaceutical products and its fertiliser activities were sold to Norsk Hydro
Norsk Hydro
in 1982.[4] Many years of successful growth were financed by sales of sodium cromoglycate in a variety of formulations used to treat asthma and allergies of the eye among several disease areas. However, the loss of lucrative product licences for Opticrom
and Imferon
in the USA in 1991[5] and the failure of clinical trials for Tipredane, an asthma drug, in 1993[6] revealed bleak prospects for the business. In early 1995 the Instruments Division was sold to US Thermo Instrument Systems while the Research and Development
Research and Development
facilities in Loughborough
and Rochester, New York, with their pipelines were acquired by the Swedish company Astra AB.[7] In late 1995 Fisons
was acquired by the United States-based Rhone-Poulenc
Rorer, Inc., which in turn was wholly owned by France's chemical giant Rhône-Poulenc
S.A.[8] Operations[edit] The company was based in Ipswich
with Pharmaceutical
Research and Development in Loughborough, United Kingdom, and Rochester, New York, USA, and manufacturing in Holmes Chapel, Cheshire, and northern France. Sponsorship[edit] Fisons
were sponsors of Ipswich
Town Football Club from the 1986/87 season through to the 1994/95 season, including the 1991–92 season when they won the Second Division championship and gained promotion to the new Premier League. See also[edit]

industry in the United Kingdom


^ a b c d Early history of the company to 1960 Archived 20 May 2011 at the Wayback Machine. at UK Competition Commission, 1960. (PDF) Accessed September 2007 ^ "The day the Sweet Track
Sweet Track
was built". New Scientist, 16 June 1990. Retrieved 26 October 2007.  ^ 1986,1201.1–27 Sweet Track
Sweet Track
exhibition highlight page, British Museum ^ About Yara UK at Yara UK website. Retrieved December 2014 ^ Fisons
pharmaceutical sales hit by FDA move, ICIS, 1991 ^ Full business history International Directory of Company Histories. 2006 by The Gale Group, Inc. Retrieved September 2007 ^ Medeva may be the cure for Fisons, The Independent, 23 April 1995 ^ Door still open for agreed takeover of Fisons
The Independent, 22 August 1995

External links[edit]

Sanofi-Aventis UK home page Fisons
Plc Entry at Business.com. (Internet Archive Snapshot of May 26, 2011; retrieved January 2017)

v t e

and biotechnology industry in the United Kingdom

Manufacturing in the United Kingdom Economy of the United Kingdom



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Allen & Hanburys Amersham Beecham Group Cambridge Antibody Technology Celltech Chiroscience Distillers Company Fisons Glaxo Wellcome ICI Reliant Pharmaceuticals Renovo Zeneca

government and regulatory bodies

Commission on Human Medicines Department of Health European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines European Medicines Agency Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency National Collaborating Centre for Mental Health National Patient Safety Agency Pharmaceutical
Price Regulation Scheme Pharmaceutical
Society of Northern Ireland General Pharmaceutical
Council Scottish Medicines Consortium Veterinary Medicines Directorate

industry and professional bodies

Association of the British Pharmaceutical
Industry Chemical
Industries Association European Federation of Biotechnology European Federation of Pharmaceutical
Industries and Associations Faculty of Pharmaceutical
Medicine Pharmacists' Defence Association Royal Pharmaceutical
Society of Great Britain Worshipful Society of Apothecaries

books and journals

Bandolier Bad Pharma
Bad Pharma
(2012) British National Formulary British National Formulary
British National Formulary
for Children Monthly Index of Medical Specialities Side Effects (2008) The Pharmaceutical


British Approved Name British Pharmacopoeia DrugScope European and Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership European Pharmacopoeia List of world's largest pharmaceutical companies Pharmaceutical
Services Negotiating Committee Wellcome Tru