3 colorant trends affecting paint and coatings companies in 2016

March 24, 2016

The landscape for colorants is constantly changing as technology and global economics exert pressure on the industry to innovate and evolve. To remain competitive, colorant companies and our customers must keep current on existing and emerging trends that will affect the industry in the coming months and years.
There’s no better time to take stock of the latest colorant trends for paints and coatings than in advance of the 2016 American Coatings Show (ACS).
As we get ready for ACS, here are three trends shaping today’s colorants industry.

Globalization continues
Few industries have responded to the rapid globalization of their customer base the way the colorants industry has. For nearly 20 years, paint and coatings companies have been positioning themselves to capitalize on a marketplace that’s gone global at a breakneck pace. Seemingly overnight, coatings manufacturers that were only selling in the North American market were pursuing new business opportunities in Asia, Europe and South America.
This global shift required companies to rapidly build out manufacturing and distribution infrastructure, as well comply with new laws and regulations across countries and regions. Paint and coatings companies have found themselves under ever-increasing pressure to produce lower-VOC products, for example, which has necessitated greater collaboration with their suppliers, including colorant manufacturers.
Colorant companies have answered the call to develop products and services that support their increasingly global customers. To support this, colorant manufacturers that call themselves “global” need to build and maintain production and laboratory facilities around the world to collaborate with and supply its customers where they do business.
Although globalization is an industrywide investment, it facilitates greater partnership between colorant producers and paint and coatings companies. The result is innovative products and services that satisfy regional environmental standards without sacrificing product quality or lead times.

Sustainable solutions
Environmental compliance and VOC-reduction doesn’t just affect overseas growth – it also affects companies here in the U.S. Coatings companies are driven by the public’s desire to see companies develop sustainable practices that reduce energy use, resource consumption and waste, and adhere to these increasing social and regulatory pressures. The result is governing materials that can be used in the production of paints and coatings, including how and where they can be used, how long they can remain in inventory and how to dispose of product that is no longer usable.
The situation is complex and evolving, making it imperative for coatings manufacturers to work with raw material suppliers who have an extensive knowledge of environmental and industry regulations. Today, colorant suppliers are among the vendors tasked with staying current on production and waste disposal laws. In the coming years, these companies will play a larger role in helping paint and coatings manufacturers keep their operations compliant, as local, regional and even national environmental legislation develops.

IRR and color space advances
Emerging global technologies, such as infrared reflective (IRR) technology have led to significant advancements in reduction of substrate temperature and premature coatings degradation. The latest developments in IRR pigment technologies allow for coatings and colorant manufacturers to meet or exceed critical performance factors such as reducing the effect of solar heat on our environment and reducing heat island effect through “cool” roofs and exterior building walls, which reduces stress placed on exterior structures, and lowers energy costs and consumption.
Paint and coatings companies can utilize these colorant technologies to develop more colorful products and expanded color palettes in a wide range of end-use applications.
The evolution and expansion of color space with IR reflective technologies continues to gain momentum. As the end-users and consumers learn more about the benefits of this technology, everyday life can become better and certainly more colorful.

This is just a sampling of what the colorants industry – and, by extension, the coatings industry – faces as we move into the middle portion of 2016. Are you ready to face the future? Contact Chromaflo at (440) 997-5137 and let us help you prepare.

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