Brands and countries

The Boston Blacking Company: A great beginning

In 1889, the Boston Blacking Company, a producer of leather colourings and dyes for the shoemaking industry, was founded in Chelsea, Massachusetts. The company grew in several countries through mergers, acquisitions and organic growth. By the late 1920’s, the Boston Blacking Company was established in 12 countries across three continents and employed over 1,000 chemists and technicians. A number of products has been launched under the Bostik brand as early as the 1940’s and took on the Bostik company name in the 1960’s.

Growth through acquisition

In 1980, Bostik was taken over by the Connecticut group Emhart Corporation, which nine years later was, itself, bought up by Black & Decker. Black & Decker split apart the mechanical and chemical activities of the group to leave Bostik as a stand-alone concern. 

In 1990, the French oil and gas group Total acquired Bostik and merged its own adhesive affiliates into it. 

TotalFina and Elf Aquitaine merged to form TotalFinaElf, subsequently renamed Total.  Their respective adhesives divisions, Bostik and Atofindley, were brought together to form Bostik Findley SA and the name was subsequently changed in 2004 to Bostik SA.

In 2013, Bostik revisited its brand identity, with a new signature “smart adhesives” and a gecko inspired from nature with a science-based connection to Bostik’s adhesives business . 

In 2015, Arkema, a Specialty Materials player offering innovative and sustainable solutions, acquired Bostik. 

From pioneering waterproof boots to launching the first elastic attachment adhesive used in a baby diaper, our history is full of smart innovation.  

Since 1889 we’ve patented over 9,000 technologies covering everything from aerospace interior adhesives to Blu-Tack. And we’ve evolved enormously along the way, growing from a local dye manufacturer to a global industry leader.  


We continue to pursue innovation just as vigorously as our predecessors and we look forward with the confidence to the next 130 years of our history.

Discover more about Bostik