Imperial Continental Gas Association

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Imperial Continental Gas plc
Industry Gas
Fate Broke up into Calor Gas and Contibel
Successor Calor Group
Founded 1824
Defunct 1987
Headquarters London, UK

Imperial Continental Gas Association plc was a leading British gas utility operating in various cities in Continental Europe . It was listed on the London Stock Exchange and was a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index.


The Company was formed by Sir Moses Montefiore[1] and some of his colleagues based in London in 1824 as the Imperial Continental Gas Association to establish gas utilities in other counties.[2] It commenced operations distributing gas in Hannover in 1825 and providing gas lighting in Berlin in 1826 under the supervision of the Prussian Count Eduard of Dyhrn-Waldenburg-Schoenau.[3] During the course of the 19th century it established gas works in Antwerp, Brussels, Berlin and Vienna.[4] Its operations in Vienna began in the mid-1840s; the head office from 1883 to 1902 was at the Palais Epstein.[5]

The noted philanthropist Goodwin Newton of Barrells Hall, and Glencripesdale Estate was Director and Chairman for a long period in the late nineteenth century.

It established the Westergasfabriek gas works in Amsterdam in 1883.[6]

In 1928 it established Distrigas, the main gas distributor in Belgium, which is now owned by Eni.[7] During World War I its operations in Berlin were nationalised by the German Government.[8]

In 1969 the Company acquired all the shares in Calor Group that it did not already own.[9]

In 1986 it rejected a bid from Gulf Resources & Chemical Corporation, a company controlled by the Barclay brothers.[10] Instead in 1987 it broke itself up into Calor Group (now owned by SHV) and Contibel (now owned by Tractebel).[11]