Brisk construction and industrial activities during the last three decades made the Kingdom one of the most attractive markets for domestic and international paint and coatings producers operating in the country.
Estimated to be worth around $1.8 billion (at the end of 2018), the paint and coatings industry in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has grown rapidly in the last few decades because of a boost in the national economy due to high prices of oil, which led to flourishing projects in both government and private sectors.
Both the architectural and industrial segments have registered steady demand from the construction and industrial activities in
Though it is the largest in the Arab world, the Saudi paint and coatings industry has suffered due to low oil prices and austerity measures aimed at reducing a huge budget deficit.
In 2017, the Saudi economy shrank for the first time since the global financial crisis almost a decade earlier, but in the year 2018, it grew 2.2 percent, boosted by a strong oil sector.
Mixed economic growth in the last two years has brought similar results for the paint industry in the years 2018 and 2019 in Saudi Arabia.
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia implemented significant cuts in oil production in 2019, as part of an OPEC+ agreement. These have contributed to softening GDP growth, which led to slower growth in paint and coatings consumption.
In the last decade, several multinational paint and coatings producers have entered into the Saudi Arabian market by establishing manufacturing plants, acquiring existing paint producers, entering into JVs with existing producers or setting up representative offices.
In 2016, Japanese paint producer Kansai acquired an existing industrial coatings producer in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Industrial Paint Company (SIPCO) was engaged in developing anti-corrosion paints to oil companies.
Kansai Paint established its window company to the Middle East region in Dubai in 2008. Currently, the company has footprints that extend across 24 countries in the Middle East, North Africa and CIS markets.
U.S.-based Sherwin-Williams started its manufacturing in Saudi Arabia in 2014 through a JV with the Red Sea Housing Services Company produces paints and coatings from Jeddah-based plant.
The JV, Premier Paints Company produces architectural paints in the country. The company also supports the distribution and sales of Sherwin-Williams’ architectural and protective coatings systems, including specialist products for the structural steel and oil and gas industries.
After three years of subdued growth, the Saudi Arabian paints and coating industry is expected to register positive growth in the current year.
A recent International Monetary Fund (IMF) report released in January expects the Saudi economy to expand 1.9 percent this year, up from an estimated 0.4 percent in 2019. IMF has lowered its figures for the kingdom’s 2020 growth from 2.2 percent due to lower oil output.
“Saudi Arabia’s GDP growth is projected to see an upturn this year, due mostly to progress in growth in the non-oil sector,” according to Saudi Central Bank Gov. Ahmed Alkholifey.
Growth this year will be faster than in 2019, “especially in the private sector,” the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority governor said at an economic conference in Riyadh, where finance leaders of the world’s 20 largest economies gathered.
Home to the second-largest oil reserves in the world, the kingdom’s economy and paint and coatings industry have been largely defined by the crude industry since drillers first struck oil in Dammam in March 1938.
Hitherto, the country’s paint industry was too dependent on the performance of the country’s oil sector.
But, with a focus on the diversification of the economy by Saudi authorities in recent years has started to show some results.
Even as the oil-based economy suffers, Saudi investments in non-oil infrastructure projects led by the Public Investment Fund will continue to support the demand of the paint and coatings industry in the coming years.
Saudi non-oil economic output grew 4.33 percent in the third quarter of 2019, even though the overall economy contracted by 0.46 percent, hit by a drop in oil production.
Danish paint major Hempel has been supplying paint and coatings solutions to the Saudi Arabian market since 1973. With a factory in Damman and offices in Riyadh, Jeddah, Jubail and Yanbu, Hempel has emerged one of the country’s leading coatings suppliers.
The company has supplied coatings to the decorative, protective and marine markets in the Kingdom.
Hempel recently commenced commercial production from its new solvent coating plant located in Jeddah.
The factory has an installed capacity of 12 million liters a year.
The output from this facility is meant for marine and protective segments.
Set up with an outlay of $8.5 million, the facility spans across 15,000 square meters in the second industrial city, Jeddah.
“Jeddah’s new solvent-based coatings plant marks a significant milestone for Hempel in Saudi Arabia which is a vital market for us. We strive to continuously improve the quality of products and services for our customers using cutting-edge technology,” Hempel Group VP Karsten Pedersen said during the groundbreaking ceremony of the new plant in late 2018.
Norwegian paint producer Jotun Paints has three production facilities in Saudi Arabia in Jeddah, Dammam and Yanbu. With five sales offices and warehouses around the Kingdom and more than 500 employees, the company is a leading supplier of architectural paints in the country.
The company also operates a powder coating production facility in the country.
Since establishing its presence in Middle East Asia in 1974, Jotun has significantly expanded its regional footprint since and operates manufacturing sites in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Oman and Egypt, in addition to Saudi Arabia.
According to the management of Jotun Saudi Arabia, “Jotun Saudi has been performing extremely well in the last few years despite the changes in market dynamics.
“We have been operating in Saudi for more than 30 years with three manufacture units. Our company strategy in Saudi is long term, on which Vision 2030 will enable high-quality companies such as ours to compete fairly to provide the best products and services for the benefit of end-users. Construction and industrial projects contribute a substantial amount to our revenues, while our retail segments still account for the major part. Since the projects sector has witnessed a slowdown in the past few years, the government has announced new megaprojects in addition to many new infrastructure and oil and gas projects. The market is picking up gradually, with more activity all around, which means more money in the economy.”
Saudi Paint Company
Saudi Paint Co. operates two factories in the industrial areas in Riyadh (Phase I & II) with a total installed capacity of 100,000 tons per annum. The company is recognized for its architectural paint brands namely Paintco & Texas.
The company also produces wood and industrial coatings.