We at Genkem have a simple philosophy – “Doing-it-yourself” means “Doing-it-professionally.” That’s why we provide the best solutions for home improvement jobs. Extensively tried and tested to ensure top quality, each product in the wide Genkem range is especially developed to help DIY enthusiasts work quickly, effectively and professionally. Genkem’s range of DIY Home Improvement products is one of the most comprehensive available from a single supplier.


To be a successful world class adhesive and coatings manufacturer and marketer of fine quality adhesives and coatings, while behaving in a socially responsible and progressive manner.


To be a world class adhesive and coatings manufacturer by any measure.


We share commitment to and have responsibility for:

– Customer Service – Product Quality – Continuous Improvement – Respect, Dignity and Equal Opportunity – Participation and Improvement – Wealth Creation, Reward and Recognition – Communication – Employee Development – A Safe and Healthy Work Environment – Community and Environmental Commitment


General Chemical Corporation commenced business in December 1939, a few months after the outbreak of the Second World War. Its first core business was repacking caustic soda into small tins for retail sale to housewives wanting to make their own soap. Using soaps as a starting point, the business expanded into many avenues such as tanning and finishing agents, followed by bitumen, sealers and adhesives, and finally moved onto paints and synthetic resins in 1965.

In 1982, Genkem took over the Sandtex business from Blue Circle. Sandtex “The Original Lighthouse Paint” was the first textured coating ever made in South Africa. Genkem then acquired a licenced agreement with a number of European companies as agents for bitumen, sealers, resin, wood adhesives, adhesives, silicones as well as the Bostik range of products. In 1988, Genkem bought Brooklyn Castrol, who was for many years the largest adhesive manufacturer in South Africa.

Qualichem, the forerunner to the Qualichem – Genkem Group, was established by Donald Perry on 1 September 1983. With a grand capital of R70.00, Donald began making water-based coatings. The laboratory was his mother’s kitchen and the laboratory mixer, a cake mixer! The production facility was his late father’s backyard and consisted of a 200 litre drum and high-speed mixer making up the mixing facility.

Over the years, Qualichem has acquired many trade names, such as Hercules Paints, Chemical Specialists Adhesive Division, Tile Doctor, Ashley & Radmore, and Ritachem to name a few. In 1999, the biggest acquisition came when Qualichem acquired Genkem and the brand names: Genkem – a comprehensive range of adhesives and sealants, Nova Coatings – interior and exterior coatings for wood and hard surfaces, Bourne – wooden floor sealers and Sandtex – specialist decorative coatings. These acquisitions have enabled Qualichem – Genkem to form one of the largest adhesive manufacturers in South Africa.

Qualichem – Genkem is proudly 100% South African and offers the highest quality product ranges which have over the years won the Company esteemed status, both locally and internationally. The Company has grown dramatically over the years and caters to the following industries: flooring, woodworking and timber, footwear, packaging, book binding, labels, paper converting, automotive and many more high demanding specialist adhesive and coating applications.

Qualichem-Genkem is dedicated to producing high quality products and thus competes both locally and internationally, and as a result, numerous products have been awarded many prestigious contracts. The Company actively embraces the movement towards operating in a more environmentally friendly manner, and continuously strives to lead with new developments in the industry. The Company’s aim is to incorporate recycled packaging and move away from solvent-based formulations wherever possible; to ensure products keep pace with evolving needs. With large and well-equipped factories, skilled and dedicated professionals and with access to the latest in technological advances worldwide, the Company is ready and able to meet any new challenges to its expertise and energies.


Nova Coatings is a pioneer and innovator in wood finishing systems. Since we first commenced business in 1939, our aim has been to enhance and promote the natural beauty of wood. Technology has improved enormously in areas such as UV resistance, durability, scuff resistance and ease of application. However, one thing remains unchanged; the old-fashioned care and attention we pay to every aspect of our manufacturing process.

Nova Coatings offers a range of superior products to suit your every need, including weather protection, staining and enhancing the look of your wood and tiles, both inside and outside your home. The Nova range has been tried, tested and trusted for years, and has earned the reputation of being first choice in interior and exterior coatings for wood and hard surfaces.

If you’re like most people and think that DIY means “Definitely Irritating Yourself, think again. Think easy, think fun, think Nova. Nova products are easy to choose and easy to use, making them the number one choice for DIY projects around your home. Any DIY enthusiast can use this range without the need of expert training. All that is required is a sound surface and the recommended application tool to apply the product. Ideal weather conditions and ample drying time will ensure a professional finish to the job.