A Brush Stroke of Genius!

by BTM

Fri, 05 April 2024

A Brush Stroke of Genius!

Throughout Bahrain, few companies have made a vibrant splash quite like Jotun, with its colourful cans responsible for daubing the Kingdom’s buildings. Kristian Harrison sat down with Arun Menon, the Country Manager for Jotun in Bahrain, as he shared insights into a career painted with passion, discussed the company’s palette of achievements and explained why the future is a blank canvas.

Mr. Menon’s journey with Jotun began more than two decades ago, stemming from his roots in engineering and management in India. Graduating from Mumbai University, he embarked on a career path that would lead him to the colourful world of paints. “My first break was with a company called Kansai Nerolac, a prominent player in the Indian paint industry,” Mr. Menon reminisces. “In 2004, I ventured into the Middle East, starting my journey with Jotun in Dubai.” 

Over the years, Mr. Menon has honed his skills across various sales roles within Jotun, culminating in his current position as Country Manager for Bahrain. His tenure has been marked by unwavering dedication to excellence, a trait reflected in Jotun’s formidable presence in the market. 

For Jotun, innovation is not merely a buzzword but a way of life. “What sets Jotun apart is our relentless commitment to technological advancement and sustainability,” Mr. Menon states. Established nearly a century ago by a Norwegian whaling family, Jotun’s roots in marine coatings have evolved into a diverse portfolio encompassing four main categories: decorative, protective, marine and powder coatings. 

This pioneering spirit stretches to the modern day, emanating from the company headquarters in Sandefjord, Norway and extending in broad strokes to its international branches. 

“Jotun always aims to be the trendsetter in the industry. For example, when it comes to sustainability, we don’t believe in mere rhetoric,” Mr. Menon asserts. “Our products are backed by scientific rigour, ensuring that our claims align with tangible results. From zero-VOC emulsions to cutting-edge coatings, Jotun’s commitment to environmental responsibility resonates through every brushstroke.

“Furthermore, our Colour Trends collection is launched every year, keeping the innovation and trendsetting aspect in mind. Our global team launches new shades every year inspired by nature and everything around us. For example, the 2024 collection, Canvas, is reflecting the beauty and nuances of nature’s own palette, and is designed to provide both aesthetic inspiration and practical insight.”

In a region teeming with competition, Jotun’s approach remains steadfast: focus on strengths and forge ahead. Mr. Menon explains: “We believe in charting our own course, guided by our core values of loyalty, care, respect and boldness. In fact, some people wonder why our logo is a penguin and that is because these animals embody everything about these values as resilient creatures in a harsh environment who stick together and bravely make their own path.” 

With a team of approximately 35 dedicated professionals spanning diverse nationalities, colloquially dubbed ‘penguins’ within the company, Jotun’s Bahrain branch epitomises synergy and collaboration. 

Always on the button with local trends, Jotun strives to inject a splash of vibrancy, offering a myriad of hues to adorn homes and structures alike in a region with a penchant for neutral tones. 

Finally, Mr. Menon shares his vision for the future, buoyed by the wave of momentum Jotun has garnered in recent months. “Innovation will continue to be our guiding light,” he affirms. “Through strategic launches, proactive engagement and unwavering dedication, we aim to redefine the landscape of the paint industry. Colours may fade, but the legacy of excellence endures.”