A journey through our history

historic picture of a ship lauch

The founders (1912–1945)

1912: Eduard Nordmann and Fritz Rassmann establish Nordmann, Rassmann (NRC) in the city of Hamburg for the international trade of natural rubber. In 1912, the worldwide production of natural rubber was close to 100,000 tons, of which more than 20,000 tons moved via the port of Hamburg.

1914: With the breakout of World War I, the business almost comes to a standstill. Later, Fritz Rassmann does not return from the War.

1915: NRC adds another line of business: the international trade of raw cacao.

1923: The introduction of the German Rentenmark currency on November 1 ends hyperinflation and Eduard Nordmann is able to revive international trade links. Georg Nordmann, Eduard’s 17-year-old nephew, joins the company as an apprentice.

1938: Georg Nordmann becomes a junior manager and partner at NRC.

1940: The founder of the company, Eduard Nordmann, dies on August 14 at the age of 63. Georg Nordmann becomes the sole managing director.

New beginnings (1945–1984)

1945: After the War, Hamburg is reduced to rubble. The port is completely destroyed. Georg Nordmann is 40 years old and faces the Herculean task of rebuilding the company.

1949: NRC takes up chemical distribution.

1950: The German Wirtschaftswunder - or so-called “economic miracle” - picks up pace. Business booms at NRC as well.

1955: With the United Liberia Rubber Company, NRC opens its first overseas branch in Monrovia, Liberia.

1959: NRC moves into its new office at Kajen 2 in Hamburg, which remains its corporate headquarters to this day.

1970: Georg Nordmann makes his children Edgar E. Nordmann, Carsten Nordmann and Anneke Pahl limited partners of NRC. The company now changes from a general partnership to a limited partnership.

1979: Edgar E. Nordmann and Carsten Nordmann become the managing directors.

Historic picture of Deichstrasse, Hamburg, Germany

Continuity through change (1984 onwards)

1984: After being the company head for over 44 years, Georg Nordmann hands over the reins to his sons and successors Edgar E. Nordmann and Carsten Nordmann.

The beginning of the 90s sees an expansion of activities in Central and Eastern Europe. NRC becomes a leading distributor of speciality chemicals in these regions.

1991: NRC founds its first subsidiary company. Today,  Nordmann is represented in many countries in Central and Eastern Europe with independent branch offices.

  •      1991: Prague, Czech Republic
  •      1993: Warsaw, Poland
  •      1994: Vienna, Austria
  •      1997: Budapest, Hungary
  •      1997: Maribor, Slovenia
  •      1998: Bratislava, Slovakia
  •      2004: Bucharest, Romania
  •      2005: Sofia, Bulgaria
  •      2007: Belgrade, Serbia

The new millennium

 2001: Over the next decade, the company grows not only by establishing more subsidiary companies, but also by adding many new products and suppliers to the portfolio.

2003: Georg Nordmann Holding AG is founded: a strong network of international companies dealing primarily with distribution and the manufacturing industry.

2005: NRC takes over Kemi-Intressen AB, now Nordmann Nordic AB, one of the leading distributor companies in Sweden, in order to expand its business in Northern Europe.

2007: The company prochem AG in Zurich, Switzerland, now Nordmann Switzerland AG, becomes a part of NRC.

2010: After almost 100 years, NRC withdraws from the business of trading natural rubber and begins focusing solely on chemical distribution.

2012: On the occasion of its 100th company anniversary, NRC looks back on a successful history. What started out as a two-man business enterprise has 280 employees and generates an annual turnover of approximately €300 million.

Even after 100 years of success, the company’s long-term prospects are positive and all signs continue to point towards growth.

Happy people celebrating
women looking at an information board

The way ahead (2012–present)

2013: NRC acquires majority shareholding in Jointec S.r.l. in Milan, Italy and Copci-Metamine S.A.S in Annecy-le-Vieux, France.

2015: NRC takes over Neoquímica S.A., based in Carregado, Portugal.

2016: The subsidiary company Nordmann, Rassmann Turkey Dis Ticaret A.S. is founded in Istanbul in March. With a location in Turkey, Nordmann opens up new sales opportunities for its suppliers in the neighboring countries of the region.

2017: With the acquisition of UK-based Melrob Group Holdings Ltd., now Nordmann UK Group Holdings Ltd., in September, The NRC Group continues to promote the internationalization of its business and becomes one of the world’s leading chemical distribution companies.

2021: Nordmann employs 500 employees worldwide and generates a turnover of around 520 million euros.