A hotbed of innovation

Home base in Leverkusen

The heart of Covestro beats in Leverkusen: it is where the company's headquarters are located and where it conducts research and handles production. Covestro's success story kicked off in 1937 with the discovery of the plastic polyurethane. Today, the company operates worldwide but maintains its home base in Leverkusen.

Nearly 3,600 employees work for Covestro in Leverkusen in administration, research and production. They ensure safe, environmentally friendly and highly efficient operation with outstanding commitment and broad expertise. New technologies and processes are used in the large production facilities at the site. These help make processes even more efficient.

At the same time, Covestro's innovations set new standards for sustainability – even beyond the company's own boundaries. Since 2015, Covestro has invested around 910 million euros in its plants in order to further ensure that Leverkusen remains a successful production site long-term.




young professionals

1 bn


euros invested since 2015

The German sites account for around 30 percent of global production capacity – a significant proportion of which comes from NRW. Leverkusen, Dormagen and Krefeld-Uerdingen have formed a site network since 2010. They are all located within 70 kilometers of one another and organize maintenance, infrastructure, logistics, warehousing and services. This results in more streamlined processes, more efficient production and better cost-competitiveness.

Certification for high sustainability standards

Since 2022, the Leverkusen site has also held the internationally recognized ISCC Plus mass balance certification. As a result, the company can supply its customers with large product volumes made from renewable attributed raw materials. The selected polycarbonates, components for polyurethane (PU) coatings and adhesive raw materials are characterized by equally good quality and properties as their fossil-based counterparts.

Thanks to the ISCC Plus mass balance certification, Covestro is once again one step closer to its ambitious goals: to become operationally climate-neutral by 2035 and achieve net-zero emissions from its own production (Scope 1) and from purchased energy (Scope 2). Upstream and downstream greenhouse gas emissions in the value chain (Scope 3) are also to be significantly reduced by 2035 – in the long term, Covestro aims to achieve climate neutrality for Scope 3 emissions by 2050.

Birthplace of high-tech plastics

Leverkusen is also home to research laboratories and an upscaling plant. Everything started with one outstanding innovation. In 1937, chemist Otto Bayer discovered the plastic polyurethane in Leverkusen, a material that is now essential in many everyday applications.

We use it everyday as a soft foam, in the form of mattresses, soft furniture and vehicle seats. As a rigid foam, it is used in home insulation to keep heat outdoors in the summer and indoors in the winter. It ensures that the food in our refrigerators stays fresh. Polyurethane also serves as the basis for the coatings, adhesives, and sealants required in many different sectors such as the automotive industry and the construction sector.

Development of alternative raw materials

Leverkusen, a hotbed of innovation, focuses on generating new ideas just like Covestro does as a whole. There, products and processes are continuously improved, developed, and tested under real-life conditions in collaboration with external partners and customers. The examples of our collaborative ventures, such as bio-based anilines, are manifold.

Aniline is a true all-around performer in the chemical industry and an important raw material used in medications, dyes and plastics. Normally, it is produced from crude oil. However, working with an external partner, Covestro has now succeeded in manufacturing aniline entirely from renewable raw materials. If further testing is successful, one day this material could be used as an important component in manufacturing rigid polyurethane foam in a manner that is both climate and environmentally friendly.

Covestro has succeeded in manufacturing aniline entirely from renewable materials.

Pilot plant for chemical recycling

For Covestro, plastic waste is a valuable raw material. That is why the company makes innovative recycling a priority. Covestro is continuously developing new processes under the name "Evocycle® CQ”. The first initiative is called Evocycle® CQ Mattress: Together with partners, Covestro has developed an innovative technology for the chemical recycling of flexible polyurethane (PU) foam from used mattresses.

It is currently tested in a pilot plant at the company’s site in Leverkusen. The aim is to validate laboratory results, optimize the process and develop products and applications on a small industrial scale. The innovation enables Covestro to recover both main components: the polyol and the toluene diamine (TDA) – a precursor of toluene diisocyanate (TDI). In this way, the used mattresses are recirculated and given a second life through chemical recycling.

Covestro is closing the loop for polyurethane mattresses in Leverkusen.

With chemical recycling, plastics are broken down chemically into their original molecular forms so that they can be processed into entirely new plastic materials. It is the only way to recycle certain plastics in relevant quantities. There is an increasing demand for new developments in this area - and this is where Covestro can apply its core chemical expertise.

It is an important step towards a closed recycling loop. This not only opens up new business areas, but also makes a significant contribution to more sustainable waste management and to protecting the climate and the Environment..

Chemical recycling of for polyurethane mattresses

Electrolysis with renewable electricity from hydropower

On the path to operational climate neutrality in 2035, Covestro plans to switch its production entirely to electricity from renewable sources. This will also make the energy-intensive production of basic raw materials more climate-friendly. The company has already taken a first step: Covestro is now cooperating with LANXESS in the production of chlorine, caustic soda and hydrogen at its three NRW sites.

In the future, Covestro will provide the specialty chemicals company with these basic raw materials from Leverkusen, Dormagen and Krefeld-Uerdingen. Around one-third of the total volume will be produced using energy from hydropower on the basis of certificates of origin. Thanks to the cooperation, indirect emissions can be reduced by around 120,000 metric tons of CO₂ equivalents per year.

Chlorine, caustic soda and hydrogen are the basis for many products in the chemical and plastics industries. LANXESS utilizes them, for example, for products used in the food industry or agriculture.

With electricity from hydropower: Covestro and LANXESS are making the production of important basic raw materials more climate-friendly going forward.

Wind Technology Center promotes sustainable energy generation

A breath of fresh air for the energy transition: At its new wind technology center in Leverkusen, Covestro is developing innovative polyurethane resins (PUR) for use in wind turbine rotor blades. The company is thus contributing to the global expansion of alternative energies and providing important impetus for a climate-neutral future.

One goal of the Wind Technology Center is to make the production of rotor blades more efficient in order to drive forward the expansion of renewables. To this end, Covestro wants to launch new robust materials that combine the properties important for rotor blades, such as strength, stiffness and temperature resistance. To this end, existing products are continuously optimized and completely new formulations are developed and tested.

The Wind Technology Center has a decisive advantage: it enables application technology development in close cooperation with customers. Covestro can simulate manufacturing processes in the center, which is equipped with high-quality technology. This enables the company to show its customers how the innovative PUR resins can improve the final product.

At the new Wind Technology Center, Covestro is developing new material solutions for sustainable energy generation.

Digital upgrade for chlorine production

Digitalization is an important driver of innovation in the chemical industry. Industry 4.0 marks the start of a new era for companies in the sector. Covestro is actively seizing the opportunities offered by digitization. In Leverkusen, the company is using digital technologies in many of its production facilities to unlock new efficiency potential.

Covestro has just installed state-of-the-art cell voltage measurement devices using fiber optic technology in its chlorine production – a real upgrade for the 3,000 electrolysis elements. They produce around 360,000 metric tons of chlorine annually. New MODA boxes now further increase the efficiency. The boxes are attached to the electrolyzers and connected to each of the 3,000 elements. Nothing remains hidden, not even the smallest deviations from the specified values.

They transmit signals to the computer via high-performance fiber optic cables. Software specially developed for this process then checks the electrical pulses within milliseconds and evaluates them. This is how the digital future looks like at the Covestro site in Leverkusen. Dormagen and Krefeld-Uerdingen are also to receive the "digital upgrade" soon.

The digital chlorine factory in Leverkusen ensures further efficiency gains in production.

The headquarters completed in the fall of 2020 demonstrates the importance of the Leverkusen site for Covestro. The building offers space for around 700 employees and allows them to work in excellent conditions.

Leverkusen over the years

  • 2022

    Circular solutions with alternative raw materials

    The "CQ" label identifies Covestro products that consist of at least 25 percent alternative raw materials. The first initiative: Evocycle® CQ Mattress - an innovative technology for the chemical recycling of polyurethane mattress foam. A pilot plant at the Leverkusen site is currently operating with the process.

  • ISCC Plus mass balance certification for Leverkusen

    The Leverkusen site has received the internationally recognized ISCC Plus mass balance certification in 2022. The company can now supply its customers with large product volumes made from renewable attributed raw materials.

  • 2020

    Covestro turns five years old

    Covestro celebrates its five-year anniversary. The company can look back on a successful Group development.

  • Georg Menges Award for Covestro CEO

    CEO Markus Steilemann receives the Georg Menges Award from the Institute of Plastics Processing at RWTH Aachen University. In doing so, the institute honors Steilemann's and Covestro AG's commitment to plastics as a sustainable material.

  • 2019

    Covestro increases group revenues once again

    Covestro records increased revenues for the third time in a row. Group revenues increased by 3.4% in 2018, reaching 14.6 billion euros.

  • 2018

    Covestro is listed on the DAX stock exchange

    Covestro AG was listed in Germany's leading stock index, the DAX, on March 19th, 2018.

  • 2015

    Covestro founded

    On September 1st, Bayer MaterialScience becomes a separate legal entity operating under the name Covestro. Covestro AG makes its debut on the stock market on October 6th.

  • 2004

    Independence of Bayer MaterialScience AG

    Bayer MaterialScience AG becomes a legally independent company during the restructuring of Bayer AG.

  • 1912-1937

    Polyurethane synthesis

    Leverkusen becomes Bayer’s headquarters. A group of researchers working with chemist Otto Bayer synthesized polyurethane for the first time in Leverkusen. The uses of the material are initially unclear. Consequently, industrial-scale production begins only years later.

  • 1891

    Bayer moves to Leverkusen

    Bayer purchases the alizarin red factory of Dr. Carl Leverkus & Sons, later adding land along the Rhine river to its holding. By doing so, the company secured space for expansion which was not available at its original Wuppertal headquarters.

  • 1861

    Founding of the city of Leverkusen

    Chemical company owner Carl Leverkus relocates his ultramarine blue dye factory from Wermelskirchen to the town of Wiesdorf. Later, alizarin red is produced as well. He calls the company-owned housing estate Leverkusen – and the name is transferred to the newly founded city in 1930.

Covestro in Germany

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Covestro – A good neighbor

Living together in harmony is very important to Covestro. This is why the company actively seeks out dialog and maintains close contacts with neighbors at its production sites. At Covestro, safety comes first. The company is dedicated to reducing risks for our employees and neighbors and to ensuring safe production processes. Additional information is available on the Chempark Leverkusen website.

Safety Brochure

More information on Covestro in Leverkusen

Covestro AG
CHEMPARK Leverkusen
Zentraler Besucherempfang
Kaiser-Wilhelm-Allee 101–103
51373 Leverkusen

+49 214 6009 2000

Directions to the site


Learn more about Covestro sites in Germany

  • Germany


    Dormagen is the largest and one of the most modern Covestro sites in Germany.

  • Germany


    Covestro's Krefeld-Uerdingen location is a leader in manufacturing high-tech plastics like polycarbonate.

  • Germany


    Covestro produces not only the rigid foam component MDI in Brunsbüttel, but also operates the Covestro Industrial Park Brunsbüttel.

  • Germany


    Covestro's Bomlitz site is a global leader in manufacturing thermoplastic elastomer films.

  • Germany


    Covestro produces innovative synthetic resins for the paints, coatings and plastics industries in Meppen.

  • Germany

    Site network in North Rhine-Westphalia

    The site network in North Rhine-Westphalia was established in July 2010 to make Covestro's three sites in Leverkusen, Dormagen and Krefeld-Uerdingen even more efficient.

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