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Our History

Our History

AkzoNobel Sign Finishes has supplied high-quality paint products to the sign industry for over 50 years. Sign Finishes got its start in the late 1950s with the invention of a revolutionary product called Grip-Flex from Keystone Refining Company, a subsidiary of Wyandotte Paint Products (later known as Wyandotte Sign Finishes). 

Grip-Flex was the first translucent flexible sign coating that could be directly applied to plastic substrates used in the back-lighted sign industry. Grip-Flex dominated the sign industry during the 1960s and 1970s, and in 1984, Wyandotte Sign Finishes was purchased by a company from the Netherlands known as Akzo Coatings. 

Akzo, a major player in European coatings and manufacturer of world-renowned Sikkens Automotive and Wood Finishes, would soon put its mark on the Sign Industry with the 1985 introduction of a super-durable polyurethane enamel coating for metal called Grip-Gard. Grip-Gard was developed with the superior technology offered from the Sikkens car-refinish line that Akzo used to dominate the European markets for many years. Along with the Grip-Gard paint line came the first color tool of its kind ever introduced into the Sign Industry -- the Colormap.  The Akzo Colormap gave architects, designers and sign shops across North America instant visual access to over 8,000 solid and metallic colors for their signs.

In 1994, Akzo merged with Nobel Industries of Sweden, thus becoming AkzoNobel. 

AkzoNobel is committed to continuous product innovation focused on supplying superior quality products to the sign industry. The industry was markedly enhanced by the introduction of Grip-Gard® BC, which allowed the painting of multi-color signs as a result of super-fast tape times to dramatically improve productivity. 

Recently, AkzoNobel made another quantum leap in setting new standards for performance with the introduction of Grip-Gard® EFx-LV. The single stage system revolutionizes how color is matched, mixed and applied with expanded color palette, virtually no color shift and the industry's fastest dry and handling times. 

At AkzoNobel, we continue searching for new and innovative technologies and providing products that are environmentally friendly.

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