PPG Industries is a leading diversified manufacturer that supplies products and services around the world.
The company makes protective and decorative coatings, adhesives, sealants, metal pretreatment products, flat glass, fabricated glass products, continuous-strand fiber glass products, and chlor-alkali and specialty chemicals — including photochromic ophthalmic lenses, optical materials, amorphous precipitated silicas and fine chemicals. In addition, PPG provides insurance claims-processing services.
With headquarters in Pittsburgh, PPG has 110 manufacturing facilities and equity affiliates in more than 20 countries.
During this period, PPG also increased its commitment to developing technology for improved production efficiency and high product quality and versatility. One early achievement in 1924 was the first straight-line conveyor method of glass manufacture, which advanced the glass production process much as the assembly line transformed the automotive industry. In the decades since, PPG has continued to develop new glass and paint products to meet more demanding market needs, and to expand its array of chemical products.
PPG Industries was founded in 1883 as the
Pittsburgh Plate Glass Co.
The company’s first plant, at Creighton, Pa., near Pittsburgh, was the first commercially successful plate glass factory in the United States. PPG expanded flat glass production operations rapidly during the next decade and a half through new facilities and acquisitions.
Diversification began with construction of a plant in Ohio in 1899 to ensure a reliable supply of alkali for glassmaking – the first of PPG’s chemicals businesses – and the 1900 acquisition of a paint company that was the foundation of its coatings businesses. In 1902, PPG became one of the first American manufacturing firms to establish European operations.
Glass and paint provided continued prosperity to the company in the 1920s, as the automotive industry and construction of skyscrapers transformed and modernized the American scene.
In 1952, recognizing the potential of another type of glass product, the company established its fiber glass business. One of the “miracle” fibers created by laboratory researchers, fiber glass continues to achieve expanding use in a variety of products, and PPG has been at the forefront of product and process development.
As a result of its diversification, growth and rapidly developing global presence, as well as the passing of the old plate process for making glass, the company changed its name to PPG Industries in 1968. In the ensuing decades, as many of its basic commodity product markets matured in North America and Europe, the company gave new emphasis to development of specialty, value-added products, process efficiency and accelerated global expansion.
Today PPG is a leader in its markets, streamlined and efficient, and on the leading edge of new technologies to provide a growth-focused future worldwide.
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