This issue of PCI includes our annual ranking of the global top-10 and the top-25 North American coatings manufacturers. This year, we see steady growth in the industry, as well as signs of possible movement among the world’s top manufacturers. AkzoNobel still leads the world in terms of coatings sales. PPG and Sherwin-Williams continue to show increased sales, and PPG continues to move closer to AkzoNobel’s sales numbers, due in part to its acquisition of AkzoNobel’s North American architectural coatings business, which was finalized in 2013.

This year, I decided it would be helpful to explain our ranking system, as there are similar lists created by other publications that occasionally create confusion for readers. PCI’s listing is based on coatings sales alone. We do not include sales for related products, or for adhesives, sealants or inks. Several of the companies included in our ranking sell products other than coatings; Valspar, Sherwin-Williams and RPM are examples. For these companies, we do our best to separate out the coatings sales. Valspar reports a separate number for coatings sales in its annual report; Sherwin-Williams and RPM do not. For these companies, we give an estimate of coatings sales based on a percentage of overall, publicly reported sales. For many companies we receive the coatings sales figures directly from a company representative.

For some companies, obtaining sales figures has become problematic, such as Benjamin Moore, which was purchased by Berkshire Hathaway back in 2000, and Dunn-Edwards, which is not a public company. Berkshire Hathaway does not give a sales number for Benjamin Moore in its annual report, and company representatives stopped giving us sales numbers back in 2009, as did representatives from Dunn-Edwards. We have a rough approximation of how Benjamin Moore is performing based on a group sales number in Berkshire Hathaway’s annual report. As for Dunn-Edwards, we also have an approximation based on numbers from various business reporting companies. Because representatives from both of these companies are firm about not releasing sales numbers, we have decided to list their sales figures as “not available,” but still rank them according to our approximation of coatings sales.

The Internet has created a revolution in the news and information industry, expanding almost exponentially the means whereby people can get information – not all of it accurate. Sometimes this is just lighthearted humor mistaken for news, such as AkzoNobel’s April Fool’s Day press releases. AkzoNobel has fooled even some industry professionals and publications with these far-fetched coatings news stories. This year’s press release announced LiquidSoundz, a “breakthrough paint ‘n’ play technology” that “uses embedded nanobots to convert signals from audio devices.” I have learned to give extra attention to any press release dated April 1!

At other times, misinformation online is less humorous. Such was the case this month when I came across an organization called the World Paint & Coatings Industry Association (WPCIA), which posts its own report on the top-10 global paint companies. This report is highly inaccurate. Some of the information on this organization’s website appears to be from reputable sources, and it lists many important affiliations, which made me question why I had not heard of it before. Upon further research, I discovered that the WPCIA is a fraud and has no affiliation with the organizations with which it claims to partner. Here at PCI, we strive to give you information that is accurate and timely.

 Our Global Top 10 and PCI 25 ranking can be found on page 22 of this issue. Please contact me at if your company has been inadvertently omitted, and you are interest in being included next year