ICI Paints AkzoNobel is the UK decorative paints division of AkzoNobel, a Dutch chemical company that acquired ICI in January 2008. Before it was purchased, ICI had 15,000 staff and an annual turnover of £4.8bn.
In 2008, ICI Paints launched Ecosure, a range of decorative paints under the Dulux Trade brand that were specifically designed to balance performance with strong environmental credentials. Several technologies were applied in parallel: the use of low-carbon opacifying pigment, opacifying polymer spheres, high-performance polymer resin and dry hiding technology. As a result, Ecosure paints have virtually zero emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), compared with 110 grams per 5 litre tin for a comparable paint.
In addition, the level of CO2 emissions associated with Ecosure are much lower than comparable paints, and so is water consumption. Waste generated per litre of paint produced is also significantly lower.