The company’s single-source solution is working across borders as evidenced by the new business it is capturing in markets well beyond its production centres
Jotun Powder Coatings, one of the world’s leading producers and distributors of powder coatings, has developed a strong base in the Gulf, which has led to expanding its presence in several African markets that it refers to as ‘special areas of interest.’
“Our operations across these select African markets represent our vision of establishing our presence across emerging markets – setting up operations that reflect the right standard for quality and service,” said Deepark Agarwal, general sales manager, Jotun Powder Coatings – UAE. “In this case, the ‘special interest markets’ where we established our operations two years ago include Algeria, Tanzania, Ethiopia and Kenya.”
The company’s export sales account for over 40 per cent of Jotun Powder Coatings’ total revenue. Sales outside the Gulf region represent 15 per cent of all exports. Last year, the company registered growth of eight per cent in the total sales volume as compared to figures posted in 2012.
Jotun Powder Coatings operates two production facilities-one in the UAE and the other in Saudi Arabia. These facilities conduct their sales operations through three entities, which in turn, serve all geographical markets in both the Middle East and African region (MEA). The scope also covers Mauritius, Morocco and South Africa.
Jotun Powder Coatings has a well-established range of products that serve diverse industry verticals such as construction, appliance, lighting, oil and gas, switchgear and automotive with the construction and oil and gas segments accounting for most demand in the GCC region.
The company has also maintained its objective of being close to its select export markets, particularly ones that represent strong potential, an alternative to building the business there and setting up operations. “This is a strategic approach we have implemented across these key markets, which is accompanied by the availability of products in demand and prompt service from our staff,” said Agarwal.
For customers seeking a fully integrated coatings package, Jotun offers a single source solution by working across borders, segments and divisions to create tailor-made solutions that fit specific customer needs and also meet international specification requirements.
SERVICE ALL THE WAY
Agarwal adds, “When we talk about service, it not only refers to after sales but starts from the initial contact and covers aspects such as delivery, response, technical issues and training. Incidentally our revamped Powder School has just been launched and it covers a wider range of topics.”
Jotun’s Powder School is one of the company’s key initiatives that aim to provide users with comprehensive training through specially designed modules covering topics such as powder, application, pre-treatment, trouble shooting and products among other things.
PRODUCTS OLD AND NEW
Jotun’s overseas markets are made up mostly of companies within the industrial segment, far different from the local markets, which are predominantly construction-based. The company has done particularly well with its range of architectural products including Jotun Super Durable and Jotun Durasol. Jotun Super Durable is a range of polyester powder coatings that offers sustainable alternative to liquid PVDF coatings and enhanced weathering performance. Engineered to withstand the intensity of UV light, soaring temperatures, various levels of humidity, dirt pick up and other environmental challenges, Jotun Durasol meets the highest industry standards and is quite suited for the Middle East and Africa region.
Jotun has also found success in the region for over 30 years with Jotapipe, a range of fusion-bonded epoxy coatings for the pipeline. However, the recently launched Cool Shades Collection has gained popularity in the region as it offers energy savings. The Cool Shades Collection is a heat reflective powder coating for building facades with a proven ability to bring energy savings and interior comfort to building owners and occupants. The collection has been used on a number of landmark projects such as Masdar City, the Siemens Headquarters, LMPH Qatar and King Faisal Hospital in Saudi Arabia.
Aside from The Cool Shades Collection, the company has introduced other innovative products for various applications such as Guard Miles +, which is targeted at the appliance industry and looks for higher mileage by adding benefits such as energy savings and resistance to household chemicals; Guard Endure, which is developed for the furniture industry and offers enhanced scratch resistance and flexible curing; and Reveal Folio, which has been developed for the appliance industry and allows one to coat more products for less powder due to its revolutionary thin film thickness.
QUALITY AND CAPACITY
Jotun Powder Coatings considers health, safety and the environment as the ‘first agenda’ of its business. True to this commitment, it has achieved various certifications including ISO 900 and 14001 and Ohsas 18001. Its architectural products have been certified by Qualicoat and GSB and conform to relevant AAMA specifications. Meanwhile for pipelines, products are tested in accordance with the latest CSA standards.
In closing, Agarwal said the company’s production capacity in the Gulf region is at a level comfortable with current market requirements following an expansion strategy that has just been successfully completed. However, he noted that Jotun Powder Coatings is looking to maintain continuous growth and planning another expansion in the near future. In fact, the completed expansion, coupled with the next expansion, is set to add 30 per cent to capacity for the region.