The journey of Novartis International AG viewed through its various access-to-healthcare programs and its rich and diverse history is truly an awe inspiring story; millions of lives saved is a testimony to that fact. Formed in 1996 with the merger of Ciba-Geigy Ltd. and Sandoz AG, Novartis had grown to be one of the largest pharma companies in the world. Its journey on the back of an incredible heritage of two parent companies had been quite remarkable.
Today, Novartis International AG has presence in almost every continent and is the 5th largest pharmaceutical company by total sales. A brief look into the history of the parent companies will give a picture of the heritage and legacy that Novartis represents today. CIBA’s journey started in 1859 when Alexander Clavel began a silk-dye manufacturing business and he later sold it to Bindschedler & Busch. The company officially began to be known as CIBA AG in 1945. Sandoz AG, another company, was founded in 1886 by Dr Alfred Kern and Edouard Sandoz as the company - Kern & Sandoz. In December 1996, Ciba-Geigy Ltd. and Sandoz AG merged leading to the formation of Novartis International AG, giving birth to one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world.
This was the largest merger at that time. Novartis is a highly diverse company that researches, manufactures and markets pharmaceuticals, herbicides, insecticides, veterinary medicines and over-the-counter medicines.