The company has been in business for over 150 years. Ezekiel H. Sargent founded the company to sell assaying equipment in Chicago in the gold-rush era. W.M. Welch incorporated the W.M. Welch Manufacturing Company in Chicago in 1906. In 1968, E. H. Sargent Company and the Welch Scientific Company merged to become Sargent-Welch Scientific Company. In August 1989, Sargent-Welch was purchased by VWR Scientific Company. In 2000 Sargent-Welch bought their main rival, CENCO.
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