Ivon Watkins-Dow Ltd

Date of birth / Date established
Person/Corporate type
Ivon Watkins Ltd.
Partnership began in October 1942 when the three Watkins Brothers moved from the Devon Street seed and nursery shop to Currie Street. In 1942 they began packaging ‘Fertona’ fertilizer in 7 and 14lb bags and appointed Birch & Co. as agents. Sales were also made to Woolworths and stores mostly in the North Island and some in the South Island.
In May 1944 the first meeting of Ivon Watkins Ltd (private company) held, there were three shareholders.
In 1945 ACP (seed merchants) promoted product called ‘Weedone’ (herbicide) offered IW Ltd a proposition to market this product. A licence received in October 1945 after trials completed a contract signed in April 1946.
March 1947 an arrangement with ICI to repack ‘Agroxone’ 1% dust (herbicide) from their Buller Street premises.
June 1947 first 2,4,5-T imported and trials done with 2,4,5-T and super in November at New Plymouth.
May 1948 the nursery and shop sold to the two Watkins Brothers.
1952 registered as a public company.
1960’s manufacture of 2,4,5-T
1962 small research farm acquired.
1964 Dow Chemical AG acquired a 50% holding in Ivon Watkins Ltd and a name change to Ivon Watkins-Dow Ltd.Dow AgroSciences, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Company, began in 1989 as DowElanco, a joint venture between the plant sciences businesses of The Dow Chemical Company and Eli Lilly and Company. In 1997, DowElanco was renamed Dow AgroSciences when Dow acquired 100 percent ownership of the business from Lilly.


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