CP Kelco marked 15 years as part of J.M. Huber Corporation with a celebration on September 30 at its global headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia. Employees at CP Kelco locations around the world also held their own events to reflect on the past 15 years while also building excitement for the company’s future. A nature-based ingredient solutions company, CP Kelco produces gellan gum, pectin, xanthan gum, carrageenan and other hydrocolloids for the food, beverage and consumer products industries.
“I’ve had the privilege of traveling to CP Kelco sites around the world, and I’m continually amazed by the passion, enthusiasm and energy our people have for their work,” CP Kelco President Didier Viala said. “The progress we’ve made since becoming part of Huber is due to each and every one of you, whether you have been here 15 or more years, or are just joining us on this journey.”
CP Kelco traces its roots to the 1929 founding of the Kelco Company in San Diego, California, and the launch of Copenhagen Pectin in 1934. Over the next 70 years, the two companies helped pioneer the advancement and development of several hydrocolloids, including the first commercial production of xanthan gum in 1959, and gellan gum in 1992. The two companies merged in 2000 to form CP Kelco.
In the late 1990s, after an extensive study of the chemicals and materials industry, Huber decided to pursue the natural hydrocolloids industry as a top priority focus for exploring potential acquisitions. Huber took a major step forward in this area in 2003 when it acquired a 25% stake in CP Kelco. Purchasing the remaining stake on September 30, 2004, made CP Kelco the largest acquisition in Huber’s history.
Acquiring CP Kelco made Huber a more global company and strengthened its focus on specialty products. CP Kelco also broadened Huber’s exposure to important global growth trends, like greater usage of natural ingredients in response to heightened consumer interest in health and nutrition.
The Atlanta celebration included speeches by Viala, Huber President & CEO Mike Marberry, and several employees who recalled their experience during the acquisition and integration process.
“You should be proud of what you’ve accomplished and the progress you’ve made,” Marberry said. “I can tell you that the Huber family, the Board of Directors and all of us are so enthusiastic to see where the journey goes from here.”