Our History


Former schoolmates from the University of Washington, Brayton Wilbur, Floyd Ellis and Thomas Franck open a small import-export brokerage trading company in San Francisco with a $5,000 investment. The newly created Wilbur-Ellis focuses on trading fishmeal and fish oil.


Wilbur-Ellis initiates a presence in the Far East with the acquisition of a highly respected distributor of food and other products, Connell Brothers.


Wilbur-Ellis opens crop protection and treatment locations for the first time, starting in California and Arizona.


In post-war Japan, Wilbur-Ellis is among the first foreign-based companies to reestablish trade with the country, a legacy that continues today.

Meanwhile, the company’s expansion into agricultural inputs continues with the installation of the first dusting sulfur mill in Fresno, California.



Agribusiness responds to changes in government oversight with the establishment of a dedicated Safety, Regulatory and Environmental department.


Connell Brothers focuses on specialty chemicals and ingredients, and increases its presence in Southeast Asia.

Nutrition becomes a separate business.

Wilbur-Ellis ranks among the 50 largest privately
owned companies in the United States.


Key acquisitions – including John Taylor Fertilizers – establish the company’s position among the top crop protection service providers in the industry.

Expansion of the Canadian feed trading business continues with the opening of operations in Lethbridge, Alberta.


A new speciality markets branch opens in Ontario, California and the company acquires Ripon Farm Service and Schall Chemical.

In 2004, Wilbur-Ellis establishes the Impact Fund to direct charitable contributions to benefit communities where we live and work.


Wilbur-Ellis launches its sophisticated Ag technology platform, AgVerdict®, in 2010 and establishes a venture capital arm, Cavallo Ventures, in 2017.

In 2019, Wilbur-Ellis acquires Nachurs Alpine Solutions® (NAS), a specialty liquid chemical manufacturer. NAS becomes the largest acquisition in Wilbur-Ellis history and operates as its own business line.


Wilbur-Ellis celebrates 100 years in business. Wilbur-Ellis is now a global services leader in precision agriculture technology and products, and in-market expansion services in the animal nutrition and specialty chemicals industries.

In 2023, Wilbur-Ellis and Advent International announce the merger of Connell and Caldic, their respective life sciences and specialty chemicals solutions businesses. Wilbur-Ellis refines its focus as a North American leader in animal nutrition and agribusiness.


At Wilbur-Ellis, we’re dedicated to providing the essentials for the world to thrive today and for the next 100 years.

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©2023 Wilbur-Ellis Holdings, Inc.