Our customer markets experienced a varied impact from COVID-19 in the first half of 2020, with Asia being affected first and Europe and the Americas somewhat later. We then saw steady market recovery in the second half of the year. Despite the COVID-19 impact, full-year revenue for Packaging Coatings and Coil and Extrusion Coatings increased, while Wood Finishes and Wood Adhesives were only slightly lower. Underlying demand for packaging coatings continued its strong momentum in all regions. Construction and infrastructure initiatives designed to reignite economic growth also strengthened demand for Coil Coatings. Meanwhile, breakthroughs in technology, channel management and market positions set the scene for 2021.
We launched a first-of-its-kind 100% UV cured exterior range of coatings for windows. The system consists of a putty, primer and topcoat for wood window frames and a topcoat for PVC window applications. By cutting out up to 16 hours of drying time, the RUBBOL range can significantly save on production time and energy costs, while providing leading performance. It also produces zero emissions and requires no mixing, making the production process more sustainable.
In an unprecedented year, we focused on delivering exceptional value and quality to our global customer base, while completing a business transformation and delivering strong performance.Simon ParkerDirector of Industrial Coatings
Other key developments
- As the market leader in wood finishes in North America, we continued to make excellent progress on transforming the manufacturing capability at our facility in High Point, North Carolina. The €50 million investment will help drive quality and performance improvement for our customers
- Strong year for Packaging Coatings, with the societal shift away from single-use plastic to cans – a more sustainable solution compared with plastic bottles
- Launched TRINAR A-CLAD, a new coil coating system for aluminum composite panels (see picture opposite). It’s a high-performance, 70% polyvinylidene fluoride system for commercial projects which enables coaters and specifiers to source consistent, high-performing coatings for entire building exteriors
- Architects and designers can now instantly access our TRINAR color libraries and use them in design software to create new projects and specify AkzoNobel products as they become available on leading building information modeling (BIM) platforms
- Introduced augmented reality in collaboration with our Integrated Supply Chain team for remote testing and line management in response to restricted travel
- Successfully launched new LinkedIn and Facebook platforms for our North American Chemcraft brand and Coil and Extrusion Coatings business to help increase our online presence
Color of the Year brings surfaces to life
We introduced four on-trend palettes across all wood markets as part of the company’s 2021 Color of the Year launch. The Expressive, Trust, Time and Earth palettes each feature the Color of the Year – Brave Ground.
“Homeowners and designers want to try new things and combine the old with the new, both in color and style,” explains Rob Haley, Color Trends Manager for our Wood Coatings business.
“We want to inspire and empower our customers and help them to achieve a contemporary and personal aesthetic as they transform living spaces and working environments.”
Our wood coatings color experts worked closely with AkzoNobel’s global color and design team to develop on-trend palettes for a variety of paints and coatings customers.