A global group with a strong presence in emerging economies

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Stahl is the global leader in specialty formulations for coatings and surface treatments for flexible substrates. Stahl’s performance coatings are found in everyday materials in the automotive, apparel, luxury goods, footwear, packaging, and the home furnishing industry, amongst others.

(1) Share of equity owned by Wendel as of December 31, 2023.
(2) Amount of equity invested by Wendel as of December 31, 2023, for the stake held at that date.In the meantime €426 million has been paid to Wendel in dividends and loan repayments.
Key figures
€913.5 m
2023 sales
application laboratories and 14 production sites
c. 1,900
employees including 25 % of women in management positions in 2023

ESG Ratings

Ecovadis : Platinum

Why did we invest in Stahl?

Stahl is the world leader in coatings and surface treatments for flexible substrates. It enjoys high barriers to entry as a result of its expertise, the long-term relationships it maintains with its customers, which include major luxury and high-end car brands, as well as the very high level of skills of its “golden hands” technicians.

Stahl has prospects for sustained growth generated by global leather consumption markets, in Asia in particular, and the development of fast-growing niche markets for high-performance coatings. The potential consolidation in the sector we identified in 2006, combined with rigorous financial discipline, has allowed Stahl to expand further and strengthen its market leadership. It derives approximately 65% of its sales from high-growth regions. Since its initial investment of €171 million in Stahl in 2006, Wendel has received €341 million in dividends and loan repayments, owing in particular to Stahl’s very strong cash generation. At the end of 2018, Wendel announced the acquisition of 4.8% of Stahl’s capital from Clariant for €50 million, bringing its total investment in the company to €221 million.


Quotes from

Wendel is a invaluable partner in our efforts to expand our market share. For nearly 15 years, Wendel has consistently supported us, and demonstrated decisive faith in Stahl, its management and employees to deliver a strong performance.

Maarten Heijbroek

Stahl benefits from high entry barriers thanks to its know-how, its long-term relationships with its customers and the very high level of qualification of its technicians (Golden Hands). These are all criteria that illustrate the profile of the investments sought by Wendel.

Xavier Lemonnier
Board Member of Stahl

Outlook for development

In the future, Stahl intends to further develop, strengthen and broaden its core specialty coatings franchise. The acquisition of ISG, on March 16, 2023, is a perfect example of that strategic plan. Longer term, Stahl will continue to reinforce its position as the worldwide leader of high-performance coatings for flexible substrates, through organic developments, expanding its current scope of business and gaining further market share, as well as targeted acquisitions.

Stahl also intends to increase the levels of premiumization and specialization to further support its premium margin model.

The group will continue to capitalize on its strengths, which are its global leadership, unmatched innovation capabilities (innovative environmentally friendly solutions and customized technologies), its strong relationships with top clients, its exposure to fast-growing markets and its active cost and cash flow management (strict financial discipline and value-adding investments).

Stahl remains buoyed by strong long-term trends, such as the shift in its markets towards emerging markets, particularly in Asia, and increasing environmental regulations, which are beneficial to Stahl market shares, given its innovation leadership and its unmatched portfolio of solutions complying with these regulations throughout the production chain. The trend towards bio-based chemicals will continue to develop in the future, and Stahl is well positioned to benefit with largely water based formulations and recently launched ranges of products with high levels of renewable content.

Benefitting from a strong financial structure, Stahl is actively reviewing targeted acquisition opportunities, with a focus on specialty coatings.


Stahl ESG’s approach

Through its culture of continuous improvement, Stahl limits the impact of its activities on the surrounding ecosystems. Stahl’s strategy is to promote greater transparency throughout the whole supply chain, leading to a more sustainable industry and a progressively lower environmental footprint.

For more information, see Chapter 4 of our Universal Registration Document.

Employee health & safety

Achieve the goal of zero accidents, all Stahl locations & staff (including contractors)

in 2022 => Lost Time Injury Frequency Rate (LTIFR) in 2022 at ~1.64

Climate change mitigation

GHG reduction targets by 2030 compared to a 2021 baseline year:

  • 42% Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions;
  • 25% Scope 3 GHG emissions.

=> in 2022: a 23% decrease in overall GHG emissions

Equity and diversity

Achieve a 25% rate of women in management positions by end-2023.

=> in 2022: 25%

Products and services with environmental added value

Provide the market with more environmentally responsible and low impact chemicals, most of Stahl’s product portfolio is water-based (more than 50% of sales).

=> in 2022: 57% of Stahl’s sales is eligible and 4% is aligned according to the EU Green Taxonomy, in the “Manufacture of other low carbon technologies” category.

Top 1% of evaluated companies

Wendel’s role in corporate governance

Board of Directors

Claude Ehlinger (Chairman)
Xavier Lemonnier
Elisa Philip
David Varet

Appointments and Compensation Committee
Xavier Lemonnier (Chairman)
Claude Ehlinger

Audit Committee
Claude Ehlinger
Elisa Philip

Useful links