The Mica brand has always been synonymous with DIY. Its trendy blue, yellow and orange has brightened up hardware store fronts across the country for the past 36 years. Although Mica has always played in the general DIY and paint market, it has now firmly stuck its foot in the specialist paint market with the addition of a new segment to it’s business model, Mica Paint Centre.
Over the past 10 years, Mica has cemented itself in the paint retailing industry. By working closely with its members and suppliers alike, Mica’s understanding of the paint market and detailed paint strategy is unrivalled, and it is this knowledge and insight that Mica believes will be hugely beneficial to the ‘stand-alone’ paint retailer.
The new Northriding Mica Paint Centre owned by Warwick Webster is the first to open as a specialist paint centre. Situated in Northriding, Johannesburg, Webster is no stranger to the industry. He has been a paint trader for 22 years, originally an owner of a Jacks Paint and Hardware.
Webster says he made the change to Mica simply because at this time it is a better fit for his business. The advantage to Mica Paint Centre members is that they get all the benefits of being a Mica member with full access to the Mica brand equity and the Mica support structures.
The store is a multi-brand stockist of paint, offering tinting solutions from the leading paint brands. The range is complemented by a full range of industrial coatings, accessories (including brush ware, solvents, glues and silicones), ladders and other allied hardware categories.
It is an exciting time for us says Webster. “It is important for us to let our loyal customers know that although our brand has changed, we still offer the same expertise and service as before – plus more. To get our message out, we have a big presence on social media, we distribute pamphlets, and we email, WhatsApp and SMS our extensive database. We have signage up – on the building and just down the road, and are planning a billboard shortly.
Most of the business sales are done through trade, both paint and waterproofing but DIY and homeowner consumers are also very important to Webster. “I mostly put our loyalty from customers down to our service. We look after our staff, some of them have been with us for 10 or more years. Between all of us in the store we are able to give exceptional service and advice to customers.”
“With Mica Paint Centre we are able to stock a wider range of products. Whilst our focus remains on paint and paint products, we are looking to expand and grow our offering. We are also adding around 100m2 extra floor space to the existing 270sqm. This creates an opportunity to increase our general offering.” With Mica’s 36 years of experience in hardware, a bigger footprint in that market will be easy to implement. It’s all about meeting our customer’s needs.”
“I am really impressed with the way Mica facilitated the change-over of the store. It has been a seamless transition and the support from the head office has been phenomenal. From here on, my customers can expect more paint, more waterproofing and more hardware combined with exceptional service”, Webster concludes.