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It's Up to You New York!

Two days in advance of spring’s official blossoming, late-winter sun gave Stamford a dose of Vitamin D reminiscent of the warmest season.

The summer vibe settling in fast!

On my podcast this week I am joined by another former independent paint dealer, James Pace of Rainbow Paint in Birmingham, Alabama. James becoming a former dealer after closing on the sale on the single-store Rainbow, in the waning days of 2021.

The arc of James’ career as a retailer was worth more than a mention in my blog. James’ history with Rainbow Paint is a case study for how a single-store and small-chain paint dealer can operate to maximize their investment both as operators, and as they exit the business.

By intention Rainbow Paint was heavily weighted towards décor; despite its name paint accounted for less-than 50% of Rainbow’s total revenue at the time of the sale. Most of that volume in niche paint brands otherwise difficult to find in rural Alabama.

A strategy James felt would bring him more value when the time came to sell Rainbow Paint.

Which James had been planning to do since he bought Rainbow Paint in 2002.

Part of James’ plan was to sell Rainbow Paint when he was done with it for a multiple of EBITDA; a phenomenon unfamiliar to most paint dealers selling their stores.

James’ lessons are important for single-store and small-chain dealers to hear as the speak to paths of success for a micro-niche of our channel which likely numbers in the hundreds. If you’re a small-format paint dealer you won’t want to miss the episode.

It’s a Niche

On May 1, 2022 PaintCare, the not-for-profit owned by the American Coatings Association begins operations in New York state. The Empire State becoming the 10th (plus the District of Columbia) to pass the PaintCare legislation which allows the the group to manage the collection and recycling of unused architectural coatings.

With the commencement of operations, PaintCare found themselves looking for a content creator who could explain the program to paint dealers, who are mandated by state law to participate.

With a New York accent, which it turns out is a small niche.

You won’t see any of that content here; PaintCare’s content will be posted on their own content channels. But I do hope that my involvement with PaitCare brings attention to the issues of post-consumer paint waste and proper stewardship of the products which provide a living for us all.

The architectural coatings market neared $80 billion in 2021 with meteoric increases anticipated over the coming decade.

With that success comes increases profits for paint dealers. And also more waste.

A Boston think tank, the Product Stewardship Institute, estimates that our national mistint pile grows by a staggering 80,000,000 gallons per year.

THE waste of our communal endeavors burdening our landfills, waterways and municipal waste facilities.

For 112-years my family contributed to the problem. In the coming months, I’m looking forward to contributing to THE solution.


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