UK merger signals major investment in R&D

Two sister companies within one of the UK’s leading paint and powder coating groups have unveiled plans for a major programme of investment and expansion in 2021 following their merger.

Thomas Howse Ltd and T&R Williamson will pool an unrivalled 364 years of industry expertise after forging a formal link-up.

“For our growing customer and supplier base, this represents a classic example of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts,” said Chairman Mr Abubaker Sheibani,

“Uniting the businesses creates a strong platform for us to grow, innovate and drive forward our environmental ambitions.

“It is a natural progression to build on the existing synergies of both companies and blend together the market-leading position, reputation, skill base and aspiration that they both share.”

He added: “The merger signals the start of a major programme of investment in research and development. This will be spearheaded by the creation of an international centre of excellence that will become the focal point for innovation in our sector, especially in the development of environmentally-friendly and sustainable products.

“We are recruiting extra chemists to our R&D team, and supporting it by improving our equipment, extending our facilities and harnessing new technology.

“Joining forces in this way will also unlock new opportunities to expand our portfolio and offer our clients access to a greater dimension of products.

“Everyone is looking forward to co-creating this new future together.”

As part of the merger, T&R Williamson will operate as a division of Thomas Howse. It will retain its own long-established branding – as well as the Royal Warrant that was awarded in 2011 to mark the quality of its specialist paints, varnishes and lacquers.

The new combined entity is part of UK Coatings Group, which is operated by the family-run Sheibani Group of companies. It employs more than 3000 people globally among its portfolio of 20 businesses in the UK and overseas.

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