Unico's history starts in 1845 when James Ross started a tar distillation works, originally James Ross and Company, at Tamfourhill, Falkirk, at the Union Canal on the site now occupied by The Falkirk Wheel. The company later became known as The Scottish Tar Distillers Limited.
In 1923, Robert Ross, grandson of James Ross, who founded the family company, and who was managing Director of The Scottish Tar Distillers limited, started The Union Chemical and Antiseptic Company. The company initially manufactured disinfectants developed by Robert Ross, who had trained as an Analytical Chemist at what is now Strathclyde University.
In 1946, Robert Ross's son, Alexander Ross, was demobilised as a pilot from The Royal Air Force and resumed trading as The Union Chemical Company, which had ceased operation in 1943 following the death of Robert Ross. The company then developed its manufactured range and began to stock an ever-increasing collection of cleaning products.
In 1965, Derek Ross, Alexander's son, who had qualified as a Chartered Accountant in Glasgow, joined the Board of Directors.
In 1997, The Union Chemical Company changed its name to Unico. By the year 2000, Unico had become one of the leading independent janitorial suppliers in the UK.
IN 2010 after 12 years as an Investment Banker in The City of London Derek Rossís son Robert joined the business to continue the family succession.
The current Directors of Unico are†Derek Ross, Billy Wilson, Tom Slater and Robert Ross all living and working in Stirlingshire in Central Scotland.