After 153 years, Leighs Paints is no more.
The U.S.-based Sherwin-Williams Company, which bought the long-independent UK coatings producer in mid-2011, has announced that it has officially folded Leighs into Sherwin-Williams Protective & Marine Coatings.
Founded in 1860 (six years before Sherwin-Williams), Leighs was owned by the Leigh family for most of its existence.
Its product portfolio, distributed across 47 countries, includes primers, lining systems, intermediate and finish coats, and Passive Fire Protection (PFP) intumescent products for both the hydrocarbon and cellulosic markets.
Leighs Paints’ brands, including the popular Firetex, will continue under Sherwin-Williams, a spokesman said Wednesday.
Leighs coatings were used in some of the world's most prominent projects, including the Forth Rail Bridge, the new Heathrow Terminal 5 building, and the Royal Fleet Auxiliary’s Wave Knight.
Leighs' brands included Firetex, Leighs, DuraGlass, Epigrip, PolySpeed, Metagard, Resistex, Biogard and Metagrip.
Firetex, Leighs' best-known brand, still appears prominently on the Sherwin-Williams' Protective & Marine site and was a key focus of the acquisition announcement in 2011. All of the other brands will also continue, a Sherwin-Williams spokesman said Wednesday (Feb. 20).
Sherwin-Williams announced on both websites that Leighs coatings would soon "be delivered in new packing," but the company offered no details.
"[T]he quality of product in the can—and the level of service outside it—will not change," the sites said.
"Importantly, you will benefit from the availability of the expanded portfolio of Sherwin-Williams Protective & Marine Coatings going forward."
In 2011, George Heath, president of Sherwin-Williams Global Finishes Group, called the acquisition “another important step in our efforts to strengthen our growing global platform."
Heath singled out Firetex, saying the brand provided "a new opportunity for Sherwin-Williams to better serve our customers around the world with outstanding technology, people, and assets.”
With 32,000 associates and $7.78 billion in sales, Cleveland-based Sherwin-Williams is the top paint and coatings company in the U.S. and No. 3 worldwide.