Our History

An extraordinary journey

PZ Cussons began in Sierra Leone in Africa, where our founders George Zochonis and George Paterson began trading commodities with the UK in 1884. As we’ve grown and welcomed new brands to our family, we’ve stayed true to their pioneering and entrepreneurial spirit. We now call on over 135 years of expertise, and a spirit of energy and innovation that has seen us continuously adapt to the changing needs of our consumers and develop many firsts and bests. Today, our span is international, and our future is bright.



George Paterson and George Zochonis set up a trading post in Sierra Leone

George Paterson and George Zochonis set up a trading post in Sierra Leone, trading goods between West Africa and the UK across challenging geographies in a period of slow and difficult travel . The two men shared strong beliefs in how to do business effectively and responsibly, with an entrepreneurial spirit, an eye for great opportunities and a can–do attitude – values that still guide the organisation today!


Paterson and Zochonis open their first branch office in Nigeria

Paterson and Zochonis open their first branch office in Nigeria – a country which would become our biggest market employing the majority of our people.


The 1900’s was a rapid period of expansion for the business, establishing bases across Africa, Europe and Asia.


Soap factory in Nigeria open

Paterson and Zochonis open our first soap factory in Nigeria.


The London Stock Exchange

PZ is listed on the London Stock Exchange, a fantastic endorsement of the group’s performance through challenging times and two world wars.


Manufacturing base set up

The growth continues as PZ establishes a manufacturing base in Ghana.


PZ aquire Cussons

PZ acquire UK company Cussons, including leading household soap brand Imperial Leather.

1980s and 1990s

First soap factory in Kenya

We purchase our first soap factory in Kenya and establish operations in Thailand, Indonesia and Poland.


Building for the future
During this period we build a state of the art personal wash Liquids Manufacturing Centre, Innovation Centre and Perfurmery in Agecroft, a new soap bar facility in Thailand, and upgrade our personal and homecare manufacturing bases in Nigeria.


Paterson Zochonis Plc is renamed PZ Cussons Plc. 

Paterson Zochonis Plc is renamed PZ Cussons Plc. We also acquire niche personal care brand Original Source.

Find out more about Original Source.


PZ Cussons creates Nutricima

PZ Cussons creates Nutricima – a joint venture with Glanbia plc – to supply evaporated milk and milk powder in Nigeria.

Find out more about Nutricima brands.


Charles Worthington

PZ Cussons acquires Charles Worthington premium hair care business.

Find out more about Charles Worthington.


Sanctuary Spa

PZ Cussons acquires leading UK spa brand Sanctuary Spa.

Find out more about Sanctuary Spa.


PZ Cussons acquires leading sunless tanning brand St Tropez, later expanding distribution to over 18 countries and announcing Kate Moss as the new brand ambassador.

We also establish PZ Wilmar, a joint venture with Wilmar International, building a palm oil refinery in Nigeria and establishing a food ingredients business. Find out more about PZ Wilmar.

Our new International Headquarters is opened in Manchester and the PZC Beauty Division is established with a new Covent Garden London office location.


We acquire Rafferty's Garden

We acquire leading Australian baby food brand Rafferty’s Garden, marking our entry into the Asian Food & Nutrition market.

Find out more about Rafferty’s Garden.

Rafferty's Garden logo


We acquire five:am

We acquire five:am organic yoghurt Australian brand to expand Food & Nutrition brand portfolio.

Five:am product

About PZ Cussons

PZ Cussons is a dynamic consumer products group. We’ve created some of the world's best-loved and most trusted brands.