A favorite of upcyclers, repairers and people desirous to reconnect with their heritage, the Surrey-based firm’s chalk and mineral-based improvements are child-safe licensed and have simply scooped a Queen’s Award for Enterprise. Six tons of Frenchic paint is now being shipped day by day to clients across the globe, says Pam Gruhn who based the enterprise 5 years in the past with the intention of making alluring however competitively-priced coatings “with no toxins or bad pongs”.
Turnover is anticipated to prime £10million this yr and entrance doorways particularly are having a significant second throughout this spring’s restrictions.
“People are looking to lift their spirits, front doors offer a welcoming face to the world and are perfect for social media before-and-after photos,” Gruhn explains. “No primer, varnish or sealant is required with our Al Fresco vary.
“It works on PVC, UVC, wooden or composites, and at £6.95 a pot it’s so much cheaper than shopping for a brand new door.”
As nicely as having a web-based group numbering tons of of hundreds of followers, Gruhn is a longstanding champion of small unbiased retailers and has formed her enterprise mannequin to offer as a lot worth attainable each to clients and her stockists.
She was decided subsequently to assist Frenchic’s 400-strong UK community survive the Covid-19 shutdown, lots of whom fall exterior Government help.
“We are out there delivering supplies to them so they can still do business and they are organising contactless deliveries to customers,” she provides.
For in-demand Manchester upholsterer and furnishings restorer Sharlene Decourcey and her solo operation Decourcey Designs, which trades inside an even bigger retailer now closed, this has been a lifeline.
“Commissions I had, to refurbish a social club for example, have been put on hold. But because of Frenchic, with my dad who helps with the drop-offs, I can still supply customers. This means I can still pay my bills during this crisis,” she explains. “It is as fundamental as that.”
The credibility that comes with being a Queen’s Award winner for its improvements is already boosting additional export curiosity within the model.
Gruhn has pushed it from scratch, however pays tribute to the chemist within the north of England whose formulations assist flip her revolutionary product concepts into actuality.
“Painting is therapeutic,” she says. “It’s a fresh start.”