“Painting the best”
Mowilex delivers on the promise of being better, not bigger.
Established in Jakarta, Indonesia, 50 years ago, PT Mowilex Indonesia (Mowilex) is one of the market leaders in Indonesia in the premium-grade paints category. With about 3,000 outlets across the archipelago and approximately 1,250 in-store locations, the company’s paints are not only used by professional property developers in iconic building projects, but also woodworkers, mural artists, and individual customers who have been using Mowilex products in their families from generation to generation.
The growth of Mowilex has been built on innovation and high quality control standards, from the beginning of the company’s founding. The company was originally planned as an Indonesian joint venture with one of the global top five paint makers, but when the deal fell through, Mowilex’s founder, then in his twenties, decided to forge ahead regardless. Despite having minimal resources, his enthusiasm and commitment to the goal of being “better, not bigger” carried the company from strength to strength, leading it to the market position it is in now.
Mowilex is an environmental leader in its field. It was the first paint company to produce water-based paints in Indonesia, which are not only safer but also proven to be environmentally-friendly. The company held out against plastic packaging until 2018, but despite distributors’ and retailers’ continued preference for using plastic packaging in paint products, Mowilex has set a goal to reduce its use of plastic by 80 percent within eight years. In order to achieve this goal, the company recognises that education and awareness is the key, and is utilising digital channels (website and social media) to spread the message about plastic waste and its impact on the environment.
As further evidence of Mowilex’s commitment to the environment, in 2019, the company became the first manufacturing company in Indonesia to achieve carbon neutrality and be certified CarbonNeutral®. The company has indicated a willingness to share its knowledge of achieving carbon neutrality with other paint manufacturers to help create a greener and more sustainable environment for the future. A wide range of Mowilex’s retail products have been certified with the Singapore Green Label, and its top professional paints have received Gold certifications from Green Label Indonesia. with a score of 98 out of 100.
Not only is Mowilex known for the quality of its products and its environmentally-friendly focus, it is also known for its corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives. The company has won several awards in this area, including the Top CSR Awards of ISO 26000 Implementation, Top CSR Leader Commitment, and Top CSR for Environment Initiative by TOP Business magazine. Its latest CSR programme, the Mowilex Sustainability Initiative, is built on three pillars: awareness towards the environment, community development, and product commitment. Under this initiative, launched in 2019, with our Singapore-based parent company Asia Coatings Enterprises that has supported the non-profit environmental organisation Conservation International’s (CI) whale shark conservation program in Saleh Bay, in the West Nusa Tenggara province and is pre-funding another five-year program run by CI to protect marine habitat in Sumbawa. Mowilex also gives back to local communities by providing paints to schools and places of worship, and painting homes for persons with multiple disabilities.
Mowilex is keeping its finger on the pulse of the retail industry as it plans for future growth. As manufacturers are now able to self-distribute in larger urban areas with the help of logistics firms, the company realises that distributors may not play a significant role in getting products to every market in future. Moreover, the company foresees that retail consumers may no longer visit paint shops to purchase paint, but turn to the Internet instead. As a result, over the next five years, Mowilex will look to expand its direct selling business and establish its e-commerce channel.
“Mowilex, the coatings manufacturer that for decades has focused on product innovation and customer service, can no longer shy away from the growing attention it receives for their long history of corporate sustainability. For more than 50 years the company has successfully challenged global rivals that dwarf it in comparison across all their markets, yet Mowilex has gained a commendable share of the local premium market in a crowded and very competitive field. By staying true to their core values, Mowilex has earned the trust of professionals, and slowly built a recognized consumer brand, while being respectful to the communities it serves, “said Shanggari Balakrishnan, CEO of ACES. “We see Mowilex as an ethical contemporary market leader,” she continued.