|Crusellas & Company, Inc., based in Miami, Florida, traces its origins back to a company founded in Havana, Cuba in 1863. In that year, Juan and Jose Crusellas, two brothers from Catalonia, Spain, opened a factory which produced soap and candles. By the mid-1880's, Crusellas had already registered two brands which would make it famous in pre- Castro Cuba,"Hiel de Vaca" (soap) and "Rhunquiquina" (hair tonic). In 1897, Crusellas introduced a laundry soap using the brand name "Candado"."Jabon Candado" was to become one of the most recognized and best selling brands in Cuba up to the time of the Revolution.
Crusellas entered into a joint venture with Colgate-Palmolive in 1929. Under the terms of the agreement, Crusellas would manufacture and market the American company's products on the island. While this new arrangement resulted in the proliferation in Cuba of the new U.S. brands, Crusellas had continued success with its own product lines. "Jabon Candado" was the #1 selling laundry soap on the island.
Crusellas was also a pioneer in the use of radio and television advertising in Cuba. Its jingles were extremely catchy and popular. Many older Cubans still remember them. It was the "Jabon Candado" contests, however, which had the greatest impact. Over a period of 20 years, Crusellas held an annual contest in which the winners received new houses. There were years when numerous houses were given away. The houses came with the "Jabon Candado" logo on the facade and were popularly know as " Villas Jabon Candado".
Crusellas & Company was nationalized by Castro's revolutionary government in October 1960. The Crusellas family was forced to go into exile. Crusellas & Company was founded in 1967 in Miami. The new company began producing the well known"Kolonia 1800" cologne and "Hiel de Vaca" soap. Having
considerably extended both its product line and its geographical coverage, the company has successfully operated for over 40 years in its new home.