1970’s and 1980’s

Our current Moss Bank Road production facility was created by Chemcat in the late 1970s. The original product offering included cobalt products together with manganese nitrate and Raney nickel for catalysts.


The Shepherd Chemical Company acquired the site in June 1995 and developed it to supply intermediate products to the Shepherd Group of companies and external customers. The business continued to trade under the Chemcat name until it was rebranded as Shepherd Widnes Ltd in 1998 following ISO 9001 accreditation.

2001 to 2015

Shepherd continued to grow both in the US and here in Widnes during both buoyant and challenging economic cycles. Product sales continued to increase and Shepherd identified opportunity for further development in the US and other global markets. To maximise the benefit to both the Widnes location and Shepherd Chemical in the US the Shepherd Group agreed to an amicable divestiture of the Widnes Facility.

2016 to Date

In August 2016 GIL Investments Ltd acquired Shepherd Widnes with a significant investment plan to grow the business for current products whilst developing new offerings which diversify into other transition metal chemistry. ICoNiChem is looking to both downstream and upstream operations to enhance the value that the long experience of the site has to offer.

The onsite management team, production, R&D and quality teams and production processes all remain unchanged but a new round of investment is providing capacity growth and security for the future. Ethical sourcing of all ICoNiChem feedstocks remains a cornerstone of the company philosophy and drives all new investment decisions.

A new commercial team has been established to deal directly with the business requirements of our global customer base.