Founded in 1919 and named after the lead compound (PbO) that forms the basis of many paints, Pébéo was originally a chemical manufacturing company located on the outskirts of Marseilles, France. In 1922, Claudius Chaveau joined the company and quickly became its general manager.
Before the 1930s, it was customary for artists to buy their own pigments and mix them by hand, which was a messy and arduous process. Tube packaging revolutionized the paint industry and was adopted by many paint makers, including Pébéo.
Around the time of the Second World War, Pébéo began producing colour cakes on cardboard palettes as well as tubes of poster paint.
Robert Chaveau, son of Claudius, followed in his father’s footsteps: the love of paint and chemistry drove him to join the company.
In the decades that followed, the company continued to grow and to develop new types of paint such as gouaches, fabric paints, enamels for glass painting, acrylics, and watercolours.
In 1993, Pébéo launched a new transparent tube packaging for acrylics, which earned the company an innovation prize.
Today, the manufacturer continues to launch new ranges and specializes in mixed media.