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Roche, founded in Basel, Switzerland in 1896 by Fritz Hoffmann (who married Adele LaRoche) and Max Carl Traub. Traub left the company within the first year. Fiscal revenues for 2008 were recorded as $45.6 billion. Roche Holdings AG, ; maker of Tamiflu and the LightCycler PCR virus detection test used by the US military.

The American subsidiary was established in New Jersey in 1905, and became a public company in 1919 with Emil Barell as the new president. Elmer Bobst who became president of the American Cancer Society, was also the company’s president until 1944, when he resigned and moved to Warner-Lambert (which merged with Pfizer).

Roche is the world leader in genetic engineering and diagnostics technology, buyer of genetic pioneer Genentech in 1999 which gave it sole ownership over the San Francisco company in which it previously held a 30% interest.

Roche supplies 40% of the world’s market in vitamins and makes the anti-viral Tamiflu (developed by Chugai of Japan). Mr. Franz Humer assumed the office of CEO and president in 1998.

Roche partnerships include Millenium Pharmaceuticals (USA), Combinatrix Corp.(USA), deCODE (Iceland), and Prionics (Switz.), and the company has a business/product sharing arrangement with other Swiss pharmaceuticals; Novartis, CIBA, and Sandoz. Novartis owns 33% of Roche. In a “unique” merger in 2001, Roche gained control of Chugai Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd, Japan’s fifth largest pharm.

Currently Roche has additional location headquarters in the U.S. (7 locations), U.K., Germany and Shanghai. View a fuller listing from LexisNexis:


Chugai Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd.


March of 2009 – Roche completed a ‘wholly-own’ purchase of Genentech, or Genentech Engineering Technology Inc., in California , the pioneer of biotechnology founded in 1976.

Genentech founders: Robert A. Swanson and Dr. Herbert Boyer



Written by citizen2009

November 16, 2009 at 11:03 pm

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