Rio Tinto Alcan Inc.

Identity area

Type of entity

Corporate body

Authorized form of name

Rio Tinto Alcan Inc.

Parallel form(s) of name

Standardized form(s) of name according to other rules

Other form(s) of name

  • Northern Aluminum Company, Ltd.
  • Aluminum Company of Canada, Ltd.
  • Alcan Aluminum Ltd.
  • Alcan Inc.

Identifiers for corporate bodies

Description area

Dates of existence



During the 1940s, the British Columbia government wanted to develop the considerable resources of the northwest and north central areas of the province. At the same time, they wished to establish new population centres, without risking taxpayers' funds. Alcan was invited by the B.C. government to investigate the possibility of establishing an aluminum industry in the northwest. Shortly after, Alcan began the large-scale Kitimat-Kemano project. At the time, it was the largest privately funded construction project ever undertaken in Canada. It cost $500 million in 1950 (more than $3.3 billion in today's currency). The project included construction of several components, including the Kenney Dam in the Nechako River Canyon, which reversed the river's eastward flow and created the Nechako Reservoir.


Legal status

Functions, occupations and activities

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Internal structures/genealogy

General context

Rio Tinto Alcan Canada Ltd. is a Canadian mining company and aluminum manufacturer. It was founded in 1902 as the Northern Aluminum Company, Ltd, renamed Aluminum Company of Canada, Ltd. in 1925, and Alcan Aluminum Ltd. in 1966. It took the name Alcan Inc. in 2001. During that time, it grew to become one of the world’s largest aluminum manufacturers. Alcan was purchased by European multinational Rio Tinto for $38 billion in 2007, becoming Rio Tinto Alcan Inc. in 2008. It is headquartered in Montreal, Canada, in its Maison Alcan complex.

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Control area

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Institution identifier


Rules and/or conventions used



Level of detail


Dates of creation, revision and deletion

Revised on April 20, 2012 by KS.


  • English



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