Pébéo was founded in 1919 by French chemist and artist Claudius Chaveau. In the early days, Pébéo was a chemistry lab and a chief supplier of the raw material lead oxide to paint manufacturers throughout Europe. The chemical symbol for lead oxide is pbO. They simply added the two e's and Pébéo was born.

Three generations later, the Pébéo name still stands today for artist colours and mediums that have a strong foundation in chemistry. A commitment to continuing research combines the talents of engineers and artists, allowing Pébéo to be recognized today as the most creative company in the paint business, mixing its passion for art and its know-how as an industrialist.