AkzoNobel Divesting German Paint Stores

In a move designed to strengthen the performance of its German decorative paints business, Netherlands-based paint giant AkzoNobel (NASDAQOTH: AKZOY  ) announced today that it is divesting to independent distributors that country's paints stores for professionals.

The company currently operates 72 stores in Germany that sell professional paint and third-party products. The new setup is intended to allow the paint maker to select the most efficient distribution channels for its professional paint products, rather than operating its own stores. Instead, it will focus its activities on the distribution and marketing of paint under brands such as Sikkens, Herbol, and Consolan.

Ruud Joosten, AkzoNobel executive committee member, decorative paints, said: "We are changing the marketing strategy of our German decorative paints business to focus on our key organizational strengths of marketing and distributing our strong paint brands. This is part of our ongoing efforts to strengthen both our organizational efficiency and our profitability in Germany."

While saying it remains committed to the German market, the paint company also said it's reviewing its office footprint in the country. 

Werner Fuhrmann, the executive committee member responsible for specialty chemicals and Germany, said: "These improvements are intended to reduce complexity and further improve the operational efficiency of our German activities. They will boost our competitiveness and help us to greater success for our businesses in Germany going forward."

In total, AkzoNobel's decorative paints, performance coatings, and specialty chemicals businesses have 3,900 employees in Germany, along with 17 manufacturing plants and eight offices. They generated revenues last year of close to 1.3 billion euros in the country.

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