19 Oct 2010
Roger Perry, managing director of Brotherton Esseco Ltd in Wakefield, has won the 2010 Chemistry for Industry Award.
Brotherton Speciality Products was founded by Lord Brotherton in 1878. It was invited to join Brunner Mond, Nobel Explosives, United Alkali and British Dyestuffs to form ICI, but declined to do so. It remained an independent chemical company until it was taken over by Church and Dwight of the USA, but subsequently ownership has been transferred to Esseco of Italy.
Lord Brotherton was Lord Mayor of Leeds and a great benefactor. He founded the Brotherton Library at the University of Leeds, and the Brotherton Chair and Senior Lectureship in Chemical Engineering, as well as the Brotherton wing of the Leeds General Infirmary.
Roger has managed the change of ownership successfully which has resulted in additional investment. In spite of the recession - and partly due to increased sales of de-icing chemicals during the cold weather - the company is operating very profitably. He runs 'a tight ship' but his employees seem happy.
Roger is a 'hands-on' MD with a keen interest in safety, processes and their efficiencies and the environment. He actively encourages school children to consider science as a career, and has had a number of them on work experience in the factory’s laboratories.
His company demonstrates that Britain can have a profitable export-led chemicals business.
The award was bestowed before the Group's Nuclear Renaissance lecture on 10 November 2010.