Very effective catalysts are produced by converting thio salts, such as the S compounds of Cu, Zn, Sb, As, Mo, W, Cr, Re, Ge, with heavy metal compounds, such as halides, sulfates, nitrates, carbonates. The conversion can take place in aqueous or preferably organic solutions or suspensions. The 2 participitating metals should preferably be different. Good solvents that can be used are acid amides, for example, formamide, acid chlorides, for example, acetyl chloride, amino acids, ketonic acids, esters, nitriles, amines, aldehydes, ketones, or nitro compounds. In an example, 0.5 mol. TiCl4 in C6H6 is slowly added to 1 mol. NH4 thiotungstate in cyclohexylamine, while cooled by H2O. The brown precipitate is filtered, and the solvents adhering to it are extracted with low-boiling solvents, for example, acetone or alcohol. It is then treated with H2 with a slight admixture of H2S at 300°-400°. The resulting gray-black compound is pressed and used.