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The growth of Vican Automotive Coatings and their comprehensive range of car refinish paints has been quite phenomenal. Their factory site in Booysens, Johannesburg, started from humble beginnings in 2013 and has become a powerhouse of excellent quality refinish products.  Automotive Refinisher were recently invited to take an in-depth look at the company’s ongoing improvements and investment in equipment at their new state-of-the-art factory complex.

The business of car refinish paint manufacturing has often become the playground of major international brands, but because the body shop repair trade has also become extremely price sensitive, there is definitely room for a paint such as Vican Manufacturing. They understand the needs of the diverse South African market and know how to navigate and prosper in this space.

The company say the overall plan is meeting the demand at entry level as well as for professional needs. Vican director, Chad Cardoso, says that by maintaining this focus they are reaping the benefits of their major upgrades which they have made in their manufacturing capacity. Sales have proven excellent with their loyal band of professional refinish paint distributors.

The main thrust of the business has become one of concentrating on constant quality of product output. They have an extensive range of paints from 2K acrylic enamels, basecoats and primers as well as body filler sundries and accessory products. In general terms these will always need to be sold at a value price through the distribution networks that operate in the local market – as well as sub-Saharan Africa.

Vican overcame a horrific fire some three years ago. This saw their most popular brands such as Vollux, Glacker, Novel and Superlite body fillers playing a role of catch up for the brands ongoing sales demands. “Thankfully from that hard knock”, said Chad, “we have emerged with a more streamlined operation which is now focused on maximum product volumes.

“We now have two floors of production line capacity making 30 000 litres a day, increasing the company’s output by some 40%, this year alone. We’re in good shape right now.” The company’s biggest objective is to manufacture for African markets as they have seen their exports grow by 30% in the last year into the continent. Chad went on to say, “Our aim for 2021 is to make over 1 million litres of paint a month with the new capacity. We have installed ISO standards to keep the quality of the factory in order and our products at the highest standard.”

Along with their sister company, Kapatal, which began in 2008, they have specifically focussed on developing a data colour mixing system for the medium to low end collision repair market, while maintaining quality at a value price.

Walking through the spotless production hall, technical staff are hard at work and the production lines are buzzing. Attention to detail in the plant is significant. Absolutely everything against their specification sheets and the company’s in-house quality control laboratory. This provides confidence with any batch to batch variations that may occur,  that have been overcome.

Once the paint is passed, it is packed and shipped out to the company’s expansive warehouse. Vican’s expert staff of paint makers remain committed to a quality refinish product. “In this business,” Chad went on to say, “it is all about consistent quality. Our end users demand a top-class paint job every time.”

“Manufacturing their own tins in-house helps meet deadlines and increase production,” says Kyle Williams and his team who are responsible for this section.  Vican have invested in special equipment for their Supa lightweight body filler and spot putty ranges,  along with stone-chip primers, they all complete the Vican product offering.

Ryan Palmer, Production manager for the Vican brand says he is upbeat about the brands achieving record acceptance in a particularly tough market place right now. “Great quality and a range of professional basics in clearcoats, hardeners, thinners and primers is standing the company in good stead as we approach levels of over 200 000 litres of product made each month with our improved facilities.”

The Vican team concluded that the sky is the limit – thanks to the complete restoration of their new production facility.

You can contact Vican on +27 (0)11 493 0046 or visit www.vican.co.za