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2020: A turbulent year for DÖRKEN Coatings






2020: A turbulent year for DÖRKEN Coatings


2020 was an extraordinary year in every respect. In all aspects of life, we were required to make compromises, step back and reorientate ourselves. In addition to the global pandemic, the year was also filled with interesting events for DÖRKEN Coatings as part of the DÖRKEN umbrella brand.

In March, for the majority of the company the coronavirus situation meant working from home - where possible, obviously. Employees whose work did not allow this continued their tasks on site, under strict safety precautions. Thanks to good technical and organisational prerequisites, the workforce was able to continue to work to the customary high standard from home - although personal contact was obviously sorely missed.

Reorganisation at Dörken

As of 01 August, part of Dörken assumed a new structure. Dörken MKS, CD-Color and Protec Systempasten merged to form Dörken Coatings GmbH & Co. KG. This and further internal changes served to rethink the entire brand architecture of Dörken. Following the refocusing, the clear focus now lies upon the umbrella brand “Dörken”. This offers potential for synergy effects and innovations. In addition, the new brand also places a new message in the foreground: “Discover Expertise” – a joint claim that refers to Dörken as a company, but also encompasses every single employee. An updated, uniform design rounds off the new brand architecture.

New building – New opportunities

After an 18-month construction time the new office building in Wetterstraße was completed, with the pandemic curtailing the planned celebrations considerably. On 19 June Dörken CEO Thorsten Koch and the mayor of Herdecke, Katja Strauss-Köster, cut the ribbon for the official opening. Over 100 new office workplaces were created there in the scope of a new work philosophy, with modern fixtures and open communication areas.

A further highlight was the start-up of the new company restaurant, “Herd-Ecke”. Here the team led by Winfried Scheiermann conjures up wonderful new meals and snacks each day. Due to the current restrictions, so far Dörken staff have unfortunately been unable to enjoy the pleasant ambience in the “Herd-Ecke” to the full, however. At the end of the year the restaurant was switched to a takeaway operation. This works very well, although it cannot replace its intended purpose.

Unfamiliar challenges in the time of the pandemic

The extraordinary situation in 2020 also called for creative thinking on the part of the company. For example, in September Dörken conducted a digital hackathon for its corrosion protection activities, joining with young and motivated researchers to seek out innovative solutions. In the field of construction coatings Dörken also took part in online fairs for the first time, with these set to play an increasing role in the future. In addition, DÖRKEN Coatings itself organised and conducted digital events. This is giving rise to new formats that offer added value for industry and the trades.

Supporting the healthcare sector together

Last year also saw a focus on the social sector. The pandemic means that establishments such as hospitals and doctors’ surgeries or schools and kindergartens need greater protection than ever. The paints unit at Dörken consequently provided targeted support for these areas with the specialised paint LUCITE® MultiResist PRO, the properties of which make it ideally suited to use in areas with high hygiene requirements. The company made the bacteria and germ-resistant wall paint available free of charge for a range of projects.

Outdoor weathering: Dörken out and about

2020 saw much activity in the area of outdoor weathering tests - some of it spectacular! In June the corrosion protection unit at Dörken completed a study on Heligoland that had seen a range of different coating systems exposed to the local maritime and aggressive climate over the course of several years. Later in the year a test series with metal sheets was begun on the FINO2 research platform in the Baltic Sea, 40km from the mainland. Bolts and screws have been exposed there since 2013. The findings from these outdoor weathering trials can enable coating solutions to be adapted even more effectively to the day-to-day requirements of our customers. Impressions from our test series in video form can be found here:

Looking to the future

Although daily life in 2021 continues to be determined by the coronavirus pandemic, exciting new projects and challenges await. In the time of restricted contact, the search for digital solutions continues to be a priority. Beyond this, in the future DÖRKEN Coatings aims to co-operate more closely with market players and trade. Only in this way is it possible to satisfy the increasing requirements of customers for fast and convenient advice and supply.

The subject of e-mobility is also advancing at a fast pace. As a leading supplier of micro-layer corrosion protection systems, Dörken also plays a key role here. We look forward to what is before us!