Skip to Content

Hydrite Celebrates 90 Years

Main Content

Celebrating 90 Years - Since 1929

February 2019 - Brookfield, WI

Hydrite, an integrated manufacturer and supplier of industrial chemicals and related services, is pleased to announce that it will be celebrating its 90th anniversary in February of 2019.

On February 6, 1929 Hydrite started as a supplier to the tanning industry in Milwaukee, Wisconsin which was a hotspot for tanneries, one of which was supplying the leather harnesses used by the U.S. Armed Services.  When the Great Depression hit, the previous owners of Hydrite were looking to sell the company.  Seeing an opportunity, Wayne Thompson and Richard Honkamp left their jobs in 1935 and purchased a majority share in Hydrite.

Without the risk that Wayne Thompson and Richard Honkamp took, Hydrite would not be the company that it is today.  The evolution from a chemical distributor to a chemical producer was a major turning point for the success of the company and allows Hydrite to continue to expand its business.  Today, Hydrite is one of North America’s largest independent distributors and manufacturers of specialty and industrial chemicals.

In 2019, Hydrite looks forward to events throughout the year to celebrate its 90th anniversary.  We are especially excited about the release of a new company video which is a continuation of Richard Honkamp’s book, “Success Has Been Fun,” and highlights the history of the company.

Paul Honkamp, Chief Executive Officer, commented, “Thanks to everyone who has made the past 90 years so successful.  We would especially like to thank all our employees, customers, and suppliers who play such a crucial role in the success of the company and allowed us to reach this milestone.  We are looking forward to the years to come.”

Hydrite has developed a reputation within the industry for providing the distinct combination of excellence in chemical manufacturing and distribution with the most comprehensive level of technical expertise available.  To learn more, visit or call (262) 792-1450.