The Rise of 3M


Chances are, 3M might be one of the most pervasive companies that you may have never even noticed. If you have ever watched grandma wrap presents for your mom, she used Scotch Tape to keep the corners together. Looking for for some tape for a package? 3M is all over it. Odds are, if tape or adhesive is in the name, 3M is behind it. The multinational conglomerate was worth over 115.57 billion dollars in 2021. Despite the immense size of the 3M empire, the company had very humble beginning.

This story starts in 1902 with the Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company. 5 founders,  Dr. J. Danley Budd, Henry. S. Bryan, William A. McGonagle, John Dwan, and Hermon W. Cable tried to mine for corundum, a mineral mostly used for making sandpaper and grindstones. At first, they only found poor materials and nearly killed the company then and there. The founders, realizing that something needed to change, decided to use different materials to make the same products, and their rise to the Fortune 500 was exponential.