BASF SE, originally Badische Anilin-und Soda-Fabrik, is the largest chemical company in the world. The company is headquartered in Ludwigshafen, Germany and owns various subsidiaries in more than 80 countries around the world.
BASF was established on 6 April 1865 in Mannheim by Fredric Engelhorn. In 1861, it was responsible for setting up street lighting for the town council. The company also was responsible for setting up gasworks, whose by-product tar was used for the production of dye, soda and acids.