Ferdinand Barbedienne (d. 1892) took up metal-working when he went into partnership with Achille Collas to specialize in making reductions of antique and modern sculpture as 'Collas & Barbedienne' in 1838. Eventually they employed 300 craftsmen. By 1850 the firm was also supplying furniture such as the large commission for Renaissance revival furnishings for the Hôtel de Ville in Paris. From 1851 they received numerous medals at international exhibitions and the company was fully renamed 'Barbedienne' upon Collas' death in 1859. After Ferdinand's death, when he had 600 employees, his nephew, Gustave Leblanc, succeeded him and carried on the business until 1954.