Orica truck on snow


From the Gold Fields to the ASX

Founded in 1874 as a supplier of explosives to the Victorian gold fields in Australia, Orica has grown to become one of the leading publicly-owned companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange.

Throughout this journey there have been several transformations. The original company, Jones, Scott and Co., was bought by Nobel which went on to merge with Brunner Mond and Co, United Alkali Company and British Dyestuffs Corporation to form Imperial Chemical Industries Plc (ICI Plc).

In 1928, Imperial Chemical Industries of Australia and New Zealand (ICIANZ) was incorporated to acquire and coordinate all the Australasian interests of ICI Plc.

In 1971, the company became ICI Australia.

When parent company ICI Plc divested its major shareholding in ICI Australia in 1997, a new independent Australasian company was formed; and on 2 February 1998 we became known as Orica.

Recent Expansion and Acquisitions

Since 1998, Orica has pursued opportunities for organic growth, category expansion, mergers and acquisitions, including:

  • Orica’s acquisition of the global explosives interests of ICI Plc in 1998, beginning our transformation into a global company
  • Several acquisitions by Orica’s Chemnet business that have taken the business into new categories and new geographies
  • Significant capacity expansions at our Yarwun and Kooragang Island ammonium nitrate plants
  • The acquisition of parts of Dyno Nobel’s commercial explosives business
  • The acquisition of Minova, the global leader in specialist chemical products for underground mining and civil engineering activities
  • Minor acquisitions by our Watercare business that have broadened the range of our water treatment technologies
  • The acquisition of Excel Mining Systems that expands the breadth of stabilisation systems being offered to customers in the underground mining industry
  • The demerger of DuluxGroup in 2010, continuing Orica's transformation into a focused mining services business supplying the global mining and infrastructure industries with critical consumables.

Going Global

As Orica has evolved into the multi-billion dollar, global company that it is today, we have maintained proud traditions of leadership, innovation, quality and safety.

An Australian company with a global footprint, Orica has a diverse workforce of over 14,500 people, with operations in more than 50 countries and customers in more than 100.


  • Australia: 1800 033 111
  • New Zealand: 0800 734 607
  • International: +61 3 9663 2130
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