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"The historical roots of Umicore go back more than 200 years and the Group in its current form is the result of the coming together of a number of mining and smelting companies which gradually evolved into the materials-technology company Umicore is today. Some 200 years ago, on 17 December 1805, Jean Dony obtained the concession of the Vieille-Montagne mine in Moresnet, on what is today the border between Belgium and Germany. This date can thus be said to mark the beginning of what became in 1837 the “Société Anonyme des Mines et Fonderies de Zinc de la Vieille-Montagne”, the oldest of Umicore’s predecessor companies.

"The history of another main strand of Umicore, Union Minière, commenced in 1906. At that time it was known as Union Minière du Haut Katanga (UMHK), and its activity consisted of exploiting the rich mineral resources of Belgium's colony of the Congo: copper, cobalt, tin and precious metals.

"After the company's assets were nationalized by the Zairian government in 1968, Union Minière set out to develop new mining and refining activities. It eventually became a sub-holding of Société Générale de Belgique." [1]


Accessed May 2010: [2]




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  1. History, Umicore, accessed May 8, 2010.
  2. Directors, Umicore, accessed May 8, 2010.