The Harburg Linseed Oil and Varnish Factory Brinckman started its business in Hamburg-Harburg already in 1896. The founders were the Harburgian entrepreneurs Max Brinckman and Arnold Mergell. In 1906 the company was rebranded to Harburger Oelwerke Brinckman and Mergell, shortly HOBUM.
The Harburger Fettchemie Brinckman und Mergell was founded in 1959. As the smaller sister of the vegetable oil refinery, this company was initially focused on the processing of refining fatty acids into oleochemical lubricants. In the 1980s the company strategically shifted the focus towards the processing of highly unsaturated vegetable oils and fatty acids, associated with a specialisation towards the chemistry of double bonds.
The Brinckman family opted out in the mid-1980s and the refinery was sold to the Belgian Vandemoortele Group in 1990. Since then the company is the core of the HOBUM Group, today managed in the fourth generation by the Mergell family. In 2003 the company was finally renamed HOBUM Oleochemicals in order to enable a stronger international orientation of the company.