Gerhard Mennen founded Mennen Company in 1878 by . It started as a soap and personal hygiene products company. The company became known for its Talcum Powder in the early 1900s. In 1912, the company was incorporated as Mennen Company.
Mennen Company operated from Newark, New Jersey, for most of its history. It remained headquartered in Newark until it was acquired by Colgate-Palmolive in 1992.
Gerhard Mennen’s family members were involved in the early days of the Mennen Company. Gerhard Mennen worked alongside his brothers, Paul and Alphonse, to establish and grow the business. Paul Mennen was responsible for the company’s financial management. Alphonse Mennen focused on production and operations. Gerhard Mennen’s son, William, also joined the company. He eventually became its president in the 1920s. In 1923, Mennen emerged as one of the most-recognized brands in America.
In the 1920s, Mennen expanded its product line to include shaving creams, deodorants, and aftershaves. In 1938, Mennen introduced its first roll-on deodorant. These were all available at your local drugstore. Here is a list of Mennen products in chronological order:
Violet Talcum Powder (early 1900s)
Shaving Cream (1920s)
Deodorant Cake (1920s)
Brushless Shaving Cream (1930s)
Roll-On Deodorant (1938)
Skin Bracer Aftershave (1960s)
Speed Stick Deodorant (1950s)
Lady Speed Stick Deodorant (1970s)
Baby Magic Lotion (1980s)
Colgate-Palmolive acquired Mennen in 1992. Today, Mennen still offers the Speed Stick and Lady Speed Stick brands.
From a Family Enterprise to a Public Company
The ownership of Mennen Company has changed hands over time. Here’s a brief timeline of the company’s ownership:
1878: Gerhard Mennen founded Mennen Company.
1912: Mennen Company was incorporated.
1938: Mennen introduced its first roll-on deodorant.
1958: Colgate-Palmolive purchased a controlling interest in Mennen.
1971: Colgate-Palmolive acquired the remaining shares of Mennen.
1992: Colgate-Palmolive acquired the rights to use the Mennen name. It still sells products under the Speed Stick and Lady Speed Stick brands.
So, currently, Colgate-Palmolive still owns the Mennen brand.
- Year Started: 1878
- Year Ended: 2099
- Origin Of Name: Name of Founder
- Location Sales: Worldwide
- Brand Name Predecessor: N/A
- Brand Name Successor: N/A
- Owner Original: Gerhard Mennen Family
- Owner While In Use: Gerhard Mennen Family / Colgate-Palmolive
- Owner Successor: Colgate-Palmolive
- Year Resurrected: N/A
- What’s Popular Today: Mennen Speed Stick
- Naics Code: 325620
- Location Headquarters: Newark, New Jersey, USA