Synthomer plc
Public (LSE: SYNT)
Industry Chemicals
Founded 1863
Headquarters London, England
Key people
Neil Johnson (Chairman)
Calum MacLean (CEO)
Revenue £870.1 million (2015)[1]
£102.9 million (2015)[1]
£63.1 million (2015)[1]

Synthomer plc (LSE: SYNT), formerly known as Yule Catto & Co, is a British-based chemicals business. It is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index.


The company traces its roots back to 1863, when Andrew Yule founded a trading house known as Andrew Yule & Co. in Calcutta.[2] At the same time Andrew's brother, George Yule, set up George Yule & Co. in London, which acted as British agency arm of Andrew Yule & Co.[3]

When in 1919 Andrew Yule & Co. and George Yule & Co. were sold to the US banking group J.P. Morgan & Co. and its British merchant banking affiliate Morgan Grenfell & Co., both were turned from a partnership into a private limited company.[4] That same year Thomas Catto (1879–1959) was sent to India to take over the management of the firm from Sir David Yule (1858–1928), a nephew of Andrew Yule.[5] David Yule continued to hold the title of Chairman but had no active part in the operations of the business.[5]

In 1920 Thomas Catto and David Yule changed the name of the British purchasing arm of Andrew Yule & Co., George Yule and Company, to Yule, Catto & Company Ltd.[6] Due to increased taxation, the devaluation of the Indian rupee and the abolition of the managing agency system, Yule, Catto & Co decided in 1969 to sell its shareholding in Andrew Yule & Co. to the Indian government.[7]

With the acquisition of Revertex Chemicals in 1980,[6] Thomas Catto's son, Stephen (1923–2001) started to turn Yule Catto & Co. into an international speciality chemicals and building products manufacturer.[8] Since 2007 the group has been transformed from a diversified chemical business to a focussed speciality polymer business. In 2012 the company changed its name to Synthomer on the basis that the majority of its business already traded under that name.[9]


The company has three activities: polymer chemicals, pharma chemicals and impact chemicals.[2]


  1. 1 2 3 "Annual Report 2015" (PDF). Synthomer. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
  2. 1 2 "Yule Catto - Company Structure Information from ICIS". Retrieved 3 April 2015.
  3. Yule, Catto & Co AIM 25
  4. Jones, p.96
  5. 1 2 "Yule Newsletter - Issue 23". Retrieved 3 April 2015.
  6. 1 2 Jones, p.325
  7. Jones, p. 297
  8. Obituary: Lord Catto Daily Telegraph, 6 September 2001
  9. Interim Management Statement of Yule Catto & Co Plc for the period 1 July to 8 November 2012


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