PF Blog

Waterstone Faucets Honored as Region IX Small Business Exporter of the Year

10. June 2016
An employee plates faucets.

An employee plates faucets.


The U.S. Small Business Administration selected Murrieta, California-based Waterstone Faucets as the Region IX Exporter of the Year.  Waterstone Faucets is a vertically integrated kitchen faucet manufacturer that was started in 1999 by Christopher Kuran, a Naval Academy graduate and US Marine Officer. The company performs numerous finishing operations, from electroplating to polishing to powder coating.


Kuran, who is currently serving as Committee Chairman of the Inland Empire District Export Council, a program sponsored by the U.S. Department of Commerce to promote international commerce, had experience in entrepreneurial ventures prior to starting Waterstone Faucets.  He started his first business, a plumbing company called Amartec in 1987 after transitioning from military service, and ran that company for three years before selling it, later working for American Builders Hardware as its head of operations.  In 2001, Waterstone took out an SBA loan for $150,000 in order to start its kitchen faucet program, and immediately paid the loan back when the company took off with new sales from its success.  Years later when the opportunity came to buy a building, the company bought its current facility at 41180 Raintree Court in Murietta for $3.2 million in 2014 using an SBA loan to make the purchase.


The company began exporting in earnest four years ago, focusing on Canada.  After researching distributors selling to their target market, Waterstone found a partner in Nortesco, which had been selling to their target market for nearly 40 years, and signed a multi-year agreement, Waterstone’s first international business partnership.  Sales from this partnership have grown to more than $500,000 annually, and based on this success, the company plans to expand even further internationally and enter into commerce in 3-5 countries over the next 5 years.


For information:

PPG to acquire global coatings services provider MetoKote

10. June 2016



PPG has reached an agreement to acquire MetoKote and its affiliates. MetoKote is a Lima, Ohio-based coatings services business with 2015 global sales of approximately $200 million. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter 2016, subject to customary closing conditions. Financial terms were not disclosed.


MetoKote has more than 1,500 employees and operates on-site coatings services within several customer manufacturing locations, as well as at regional service centers, located throughout the U.S., Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, Germany, Hungary and the Czech Republic. Customers ship parts to MetoKote service centers, where they are treated to enhance paint adhesion and painted with electrocoat, powder or liquid coatings technologies. Coated parts are then shipped to the customer’s next stage of assembly. MetoKote coats an average of more than 1.5 million parts per day.


“This acquisition will help us to better understand and meet our customers’ critical coatings requirements,” said Viktor Sekmakas, PPG executive vice president. “We are responding to customers’ requests to streamline the purchasing, delivery and application of coatings by adding MetoKote’s capabilities to PPG. This will simplify our customers’ operations, enabling them to focus on their core competencies of product design and manufacturing. Having a more intimate understanding of our customers’ coatings needs will help us to offer enhanced, end-to-end solutions and services going forward.”


Platinum Equity, a global investment firm with a portfolio of approximately 25 operating companies that serve customers around the world, has owned MetoKote since October 2013.


"MetoKote's success is a result of a great partnership with the management team and a lot of hard work by the company's dedicated employees," said Platinum Equity Partner Bob Wymbs. "Working together we have grown the business, diversified its customer base and positioned MetoKote for long-term success."


Mr. Wymbs said that during Platinum Equity's ownership, MetoKote implemented a range of strategic and operational initiatives that have helped the company grow and adapt to changes in the market. Platinum Equity acquired MetoKote in October 2013.


"Platinum Equity has been a great partner, from helping us set strategy to providing the support we needed to execute," said MetoKote President and CEO Jeff Oravitz. "Working together we realigned the company's global footprint, sharpened our focus on high-growth markets, and made important investments to strengthen key customer relationships. We are on a strong path for continued growth and success."

Techmetals Earns Boeing BAC 5680 Zinc Nickel Approval

8. June 2016


Techmetals in Dayton, Ohio says it is the first job shop worldwide to be approved for Boeing’s BAC 5680 specification for low hydrogen embrittlement (LHE) zinc nickel, an approval that helps support the replacement of using cadmium in the aerospace and defense markets.


BAC 5680 establishes the requirements for the electrodeposition of a zinc-nickel alloy containing 5 to 15 percent nickel. Plating within the scope of this specification is intended for use on low alloy steels heat treated to 220 ksi and above.


Boeing said it is working to minimize or avoid the use of potentially hazardous materials, including cadmium. Boeing research has been working to identify and test replacements for cadmium-based measures to prevent corrosion, and this Zn-Ni alloy plating process is designed to provide an environmentally preferred method to Cadmium-Titanium Alloy Plating BAC 5804.


“There is an intense level of training that takes place at Techmetals, so we are very happy to be selected for the BAC5680 approval process,” said Phil Brockman, the company’s president.


Techmetals is AS9100 certified and a merit status Nadcap Chemical Processing and Coatings facility for many OEM aerospace and defense companies, as well as medical, automotive, nuclear, power generation, and others.


For more information, visit

PPG Expands Aerospace Coatings Development, Capabilities at UK Facility

6. June 2016


PPG has expanded development and technical-service capabilities for aerospace and military coatings at its Shildon, England, facility with a $2 million investment supporting installation of advanced-technology equipment for evaluating paint characteristics. Environmentally controlled spray booths and a suite of complementary rooms now enable the PPG site to streamline new-product launches and produce more-exact color matches.


One paint spray booth, which can house an aircraft section or small military vehicle, provides variable temperature and humidity settings for product development and training. A second paint spray booth, which maintains constant temperature and relative humidity settings, is designed for applying coatings to panels for customer color-match requests. An expanded testing laboratory has a dedicated color-mixing area and constant temperature and humidity settings. New sanding, drying and oven rooms afford the full range of application processing from preparation to drying in controlled environments.


According to Peter Wind, PPG technical manager, the aerospace industry is seeing increased demand for custom color as well as an accelerating pace for commercializing new coatings technologies, and the new capabilities at the Shildon facility strengthen PPG’s responsiveness to these trends.

“With color being used more in airline liveries and on business aircraft, PPG customers will be able to see more precisely how we can make their vision a reality,” Wind said.

“PPG aerospace and military coatings are designed for global application and service,” he added. “These new capabilities enable us to simulate different environmental conditions that could be encountered by our customers anywhere in the world from Dubai, where summers are hot and dry, to humid Singapore and even Russia, where a maintenance and repair operation might apply our products in damp, cold conditions. As we develop coatings that have new characteristics, we will be able to streamline their launch.”

The two paint spray booths and a viewing gallery are located in a two-story, 3,400-square-foot addition, while the testing laboratory and related rooms occupy the former spray booth space.

The Shildon facility, which has been in operation since 1967, also produces aerospace sealants and operates an application support center. It has nearly 200 employees.

PPG’s global aerospace business ( offers coatings, sealants, transparencies, packaging and application systems, and transparent armor, as well as chemical management and other services.

June Go-To Gal: Debi Warren, Coating Technologies Inc.

3. June 2016

Debbi Warren, Coating Technologies Inc.


Warren is responsible for reviewing orders that come into the facility and generating work instructions. CTI says she is a dedicated, loyal employee of 15 years with a terrific attitude and outstanding customer service skills.

Know a guy or gal in the industry who should be recognized? Email Jess Larkin at


Originally published in the June 2016 issue.


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