Holly Ryan

Retail, Innovation and Manufacturing reporter for the NZ Herald

Drikolor sets out to stir up the paint market

Rachel Lacy, founder and director of Drikolor, with some of the colour powder which mixes into paint. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Rachel Lacy, founder and director of Drikolor, with some of the colour powder which mixes into paint. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Auckland-based drikolor is aiming to stir up the paint industry by developing pigment powders anyone can use to mix their favourite colours.

Company director Rachel Lacy, who founded the firm two years ago, grew up immersed in her mother's chain of paint stores and said she realised the regular "complex, noisy, messy, and unreliable" process of paint colouring needed a shakeup.

The company's patented technology creates a colour pigment powder that can be added to base paint in a process Lacy described as being "as easy as stirring sugar into coffee".

"One of the best things about it is you don't have to wait," Lacy said. "You can pick your colour, pick your base and go. And you can mix it at home, it's just very easy to use."

The technology has seen the company partner with international paint firm Sto, as well as complete an investment round aiming to raise $750,000 which was oversubscribed by 133 per cent.

Managing director Craig Reid believed the company's potential rested on its efficiency and ease of use, something he described as a huge step for a decorative paint industry worth more than US$50 billion globally.

"[Regular paint colouring] is a complicated process," Reid said. "You need liquid tints, base paints, a large retail footprint, tinting machines, shaking machines and trained staff to end up with the finished colour and even then, because of the manual tinting process, there is an element of human error," Reid said.

"With drikolor, you don't get that. It's easy, fast, reliable and much more efficient."

Lacy said the technology had huge market potential overseas, as the product was easily exportable and could be distributed directly online.

Drikolor had a range of other applications including coloured concrete and plaster, which had been developed alongside the main paint market.

The company hoped to have its products out to the New Zealand market in September.

- NZ Herald

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