Case Studies

McCormick Paints

Serving the professional paint market across the mid-Atlantic with a range of coatings and finishes

Based in Rockville, Maryland, McCormick Paints is a leading paint manufacturer producing a full range of products targeting a wide variety of clients including contractors, builders, property managers and homeowners.

Founded in 1960, McCormick Paints is the largest and oldest family-owned independent paint manufacturer on the East Coast. This long history in the region has enabled McCormick to set itself apart from the competition by offering a unique combination of personalized service and regional expertise, ensuring that clients get the right product for their specific needs and climate, earning the motto, “The Paint the Pros Use.”

“We cater to each market segment specifically — commercial, residential, new construction, hospitality, higher education, property management – and we have leaders running those segments who know how to create a regional support and product solution,” says Casey McCormick, President and CEO of McCormick Paints.

“We cater to each market segment specifically and we have leaders running those segments who know how to create a regional support and product solution,” – Casey McCormick, President and CEO of McCormick Paints

The company prides itself on its agility to manufacture a custom paint solution for clients in the mid-Atlantic region, which national competitors may not be able to accomplish.

From its zero-waste manufacturing plants in Rockville and Frederick, Maryland, McCormick Paints manufactures 200- to 5,000-gallon batches for delivery to customers visiting its 29 retail stores and six dealer locations, stretching from Delaware to North Carolina. The company’s 30,000-square-foot distribution center in Frederick allows McCormick to quickly and efficiently distribute its product throughout the mid-Atlantic, providing complete control of the manufacturing and delivery process.

Leading the Revo-lution

McCormick Paints manufactures a full range of painting products, from interior and exterior finishes to primers, specialty coatings and wood coatings. Keeping pace with the demands of the market, a diverse line of zero- and low-VOC products were developed to fill the environmental needs of the customer.

One of the first environmentally significant products McCormick Paints developed was Revo, a full line of latex interior paint featuring the advantage of paint and primer in one. Today, Revo has become a workhorse product in multiple markets for the company, filling the need for a low-odor and zero-VOC coating. Carrying the reduction of volatile organic compounds to the next step, McCormick Paints quickly moved to using only zero-VOC colorants in all of its paints.

McCormick Paints

Expansion of the zero-VOC coating lines has continued, as the Total Advantage product line was added later. While many paints and finishes may release a low level of emissions into the air for a period of time after their initial application, McCormick Paints’ low-odor Total Advantage and Revo products produce a healthier environment for the end user.

Also categorized as a low-VOC coating, McCormick Paints’ Match Point interior latex flat finish is the company’s best-in-class option for the builders market, providing exceptional coverage and touchup.

Available to tackle the toughest areas where exceptional durability is needed, McCormick Paints’ Interlok interior/exterior latex paint is a premium acrylic urethane direct-to-metal (DTM) coating that can be applied to a multitude of surfaces. Interlok delivers a self-priming, water-, corrosion- and alkali-resistant paint and is particularly well-suited for high traffic areas like doors, door trim and handrails and is one of several GREEN WISE-certified products offered.

In addition to manufacturing its own paints, primers and specialty coatings, McCormick Paints offers a full line of spray equipment and painting supplies at each of its retail locations, including brushes, rollers, caulk, aerosol sprays, stain, cleaners and ladders.

With the reputation as “The Paint the Pros Use” McCormick Paints’ products have been used on a number of high-profile commercial projects throughout the East Coast, including popular shopping centers, mixed-use developments and higher education facilities.

Building the mid-Atlantic market

McCormick Paints began over 55 years ago when Thomas McCormick founded the McCormick Paint Works Company in Bethesda, Maryland. Hand-mixing small 100- to 200-gallon batches each day, McCormick started out offering just a single brand of interior paint. As the business grew, a larger manufacturing plant and storefront was built in Rockville in 1967. A second retail location in Virginia was added a few years later.

By 1989, McCormick Paints added 10 new company-owned stores and a state-of-the-art, 20,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Frederick. It was at this same time that Casey joined his two brothers, Pat and Mike, and their father, Thomas, at McCormick Paints, immersing himself in every aspect of the family business from loading and driving trucks to working in store operations and managing a sales territory before becoming vice president of sales in 2001, and later taking on the role of president and CEO.

A strong tradition of leadership has kept McCormick Paints at the forefront of the East Coast paint manufacturing market for over half a century, but as the company’s traditional target markets trended toward consolidation, the business sought a more diversified segment platform. “While builders remain a strong segment, it became more of a challenge for regional companies to sell to national builders because they thought there was more
value in buying a national brand, which isn’t always the case,” says Casey.

In response to the realities of the national economy, McCormick Paints began to explore new markets in commercial construction, multifamily development, property management and residential repainting. “This diversification helped because we were able to strengthen our customer portfolio by growing other segments,” Casey says.

Today McCormick Paints is advancing into new markets throughout the mid-Atlantic by recently adding two new locations in Richmond, Virginia, and another in Raleigh, North Carolina, as part of an ambitious growth plan. The company will see two additional stores open in 2016 and three more locations to come online in 2017. “The market is demanding more choices than the national brands from specifiers to applicators,” says Casey. “McCormick Paints, as a strong independent brand, is filling that role in actively growing in the mid-Atlantic region.”

Remaining competitive as an independent manufacturer, McCormick recognizes the value of national and international trade associations. McCormick Paints is a member of Coatings Research Group International (CRGI), a group of 34 independent paint manufacturers throughout the world, which enables them to be on the cutting edge of research and development. As a member of Guild CPO, an international paint and coatings purchasing co-op, McCormick Paints is able to leverage its buying power for raw materials. Color Guild, an international network of color knowledge, provides McCormick Paints access to state-of-the-art color products, color forecasting and color marketing tools.

As the business expands, McCormick Paints is mindful to offer the same level of local expertise and service that has served its customers so well throughout the years. “It’s all about getting to know the right people and combining that with local talent and knowledge,” Casey says.

An emphasis on recruiting and retaining top talent is one of the key performance indicators at McCormick, where the average tenure of the company’s 200 employees is over 10 years. While environmental regulations and safety issues are always at the forefront of Casey’s mind, it’s the well-being of McCormick’s employees that tops his list of concerns. “Just taking care of our people — that’s the most important thing,” he says.

As the company continues to expand its footprint across the mid-Atlantic region, family-owned and -operated McCormick Paints will remain a leader in the manufacturing and delivery of paints and coatings for clients looking to add value, protection and beauty to their property.

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