Sadolin opens first colour centre in Kampala

Sadolin opens first colour centre in Kampala
Crown Paints CEO Rakesh Rao, AkzoNobel MD for sub-Saharan Africa Johann Smidt and commercial executive Deon Nieuwoudt at the re-launch of Sadolin Paints in Kampala last year. Courtesy Photo

Kampala, Uganda | URN | Sadolin Paints has opened the very first colour centre in Kampala where clients can go and experience the kind of colour they want in their lives.

The colour centre said to be the very first of its kind in East Africa, is located at Freedom City Mall in Namasuba, eight kilometres on the Kampala-Entebbe road.

The colour centre is a collaboration between Akzo Nobel, the patent owners of Sadolin Paint brand, and Ugandan entrepreneurs, Mr and Mrs Kanaaba.

Speaking at the launch of the colour centre, the Commercial Executive Officer of Akzo Nobel based in South Africa, Deon Nievwoudt said that the colour centre concept is such that Akzo Nobel invests in the centre while the entrepreneur invests in Sadolin products.

Nievwoudt said at the colour centre, a client goes to experience the kind of colour she or he wants and participates in deciding what is best.

The Chief Executive Officer of Crown Group, Rakesh Rao, said paint has shifted from being just a product but a lifestyle, and that is what the colour centre is addressing. Rao said at the colour centre one can walk in with members of the family and experience the kind of colour in their lives.

He said the colour centre is not replacing the other distribution channels like the hardware shops, but rather providing an opportunity for clients to experience more with their choices.

The proprietor of the colour centre, Joseph Kanaaba, said the colour centre is a guaranteed business because the financial analysis proves that it is profitable, adding that he is committed to making it work.

Creation of the colour centre is yet another innovation by Sadolin in its cut-throat competition with Plascon Paints. The latter staged a hostile takeover of Sadolin distribution channels after it bought Sadolin Paints East Africa, a regional franchisee of Sadolin products.

According to the agreement between Akzo Nobel and then Sadolin Paints East Africa, if the franchise wanted out of the franchise it had to continue selling Sadolin products for a year.

But Plascon did not just stop selling Sadolin products but re-branded them as Plascon, changed all the agents and when Sadolin started to fight back slapped a malicious injunction on operations of Sadolin.

By the time Sadolin fought off the injunction one month later, Plascon had saturated the market with its products claiming Sadolin is now Plascon.

Sadolin, which has been in Uganda for over 60 years and was the market leader started fighting back to regain its market dominance, the colour centre being one of the tactics it is using.