BASF AG is a German chemical company and the largest chemical company in the world. BASF originally stood for Badische Anilin- und Soda-Fabrik (Baden Aniline and Soda Factory). Today, the four letters are a registered trademark and the company is listed on both the Frankfurt Stock Exchange and New York Stock Exchange.
The BASF Group comprises more than 160 subsidiaries and joint ventures and operates production sites in 41 countries in Europe, Asia, North America, and South America. Its headquarters are located in Ludwigshafen am Rhein (Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany). BASF has customers in over 170 countries and supplies about 8,000 products to a wide variety of industries.
At the end of 2003, the company employed more than 87,000 people, with over 48,000 in Germany alone. In 2003, BASF posted sales of 33.4 billion and income from operations before special items of almost 3 billion. The company is currently expanding its international activities with a particular focus on Asia. Between 1990 and 2005, the company will invest 5.6 billion in Asia, for example in sites near Nanjing and Shanghai, China.