Soap magnate and philanthropist, founder of Port Sunlight, near Liverpool. Born 6 Wood Street, Bolton, Lancashire. Known for his patronage of the arts and paternalistic social policies, he was also an advocate for expansion of the British Empire, particularly in Africa and Asia, which supplied palm oil, a key ingredient in Lever's product line. By 1911 his firm had become associated with forced labour and atrocities in the Belgian Congo.
Died at his London home, Hill House, now Inverforth House. His company grew and merged to become today's Unilever.