The LEO Foundation’s mission is to secure the ongoing development of LEO Pharma as an independent, competitive and research-based healthcare company. Today, LEO Pharma is a world leader in dermatology.
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The LEO Foundation was established in 1984 by Dr.h.c. Knud E. Abildgaard, the that time owner of LEO Pharma. He did so with the specific intent of ensuring LEO Pharma its future as an independent, research-based pharmaceutical company.
Abildgaard took over the company in 1939 after the company’s founder, Abildgaard’s father-in-law, pharmacist August Kongsted, passed away.
Kongsted had established LEO Pharma in his Copenhagen apothecary – the Lion Pharmacy – in 1908. He was one of the new entrepreneurial men-about-town in the Danish pharmaceutical industry. Apart from heading his own venture, Kongsted helped set up Nordisk Insulinlaboratorium (later to evolve into Novo Nordisk).