Located in St. Louis Park, MN Plasti Dip International started in December 1972 as a small manufacturer of Plastisol [heat cured PVC] products such as toys [Gumby®/Pokey®], handle grips, and chain saw scabbards. Founder and President Robert Haasl quickly realized how valuable an air dry version of Plastisol could be to the home user and other manufactures. Haasl set out to develop the first air dry do-it-yourself rubberized coating and soon introduced Plasti Dip® to the world. Plasti Dip® became the first in a series of innovative do-it-yourself specialty products developed and sold during the 70’s. Other products included VLP® [vinyl liquid patch], Super Grip® [endorsed by Arnold Palmer and Tony Oliva of the Minnesota Twins®], 3 Way Racket Spray for leather sport grips, Water Guard [competitor of Scotchgard®], and water bed repair kits private labeled for most OEM’s. These unique DIY products sold through hardware stores [ACE Hardware® and Sears® among the first] and distributors which put Plasti Dip International on the map.
During the 1980’s Plasti Dip International became known as PDI and widened its development scope, specializing in coatings for DIY, Industrial and Commercial applications. Some of the unique applications included testing on the Golden Gate Bridge and bridges in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota; concrete “J” barriers on the Pennsylvania Turnpike; concrete swimming pools for Holiday Inn® Hotels; sewage treatment facilities such as McKeesport, PA; and meat processing plants across the country.
In the mid-80’s newly named head of Industrial Sales Scott Haasl [Robert’s son] not only continued in the areas of protective coatings for concrete and steel but also pursued a new direction, protective coatings for flexible foams. By the late 80’s PDI was already recognized as the industry leader in low VOC water base coatings for flexible foams. These new specialty coatings [PDC®] were being used to protect and add value to medical positioning products for x-ray and surgery as well as pool floats, wrestling mats and martial arts gear. The development of these water base coatings was particularly valuable since the 1990 Clean Air Act was pending and manufactures had to choose how to deal with new emissions standards.
New DIY products included the first brushable high performance water base coating Plasti Dip® Brush, Plasti Dip® Spray [aerosol], HCF® [coil coat] and Vyna Bond [fabric/ vinyl coated fabric repair]. With new product success and widening markets growth, it was necessary to design and build the first special purpose facility in 1986-1987.
Through the 90’s PDI remained a leader in emission reduction with its eccs ® [emission control coatings systems] water base and low VOC/ HAP’s technology. By reducing VOC’s and HAP’s Plasti Dip International and its MURACULON Brand of flexible foam coatings provided the opportunity for many of its customers to expand and grow their businesses without threat of shut down or costly environmental controls. New DIY products such as Liquid Tape and Plasti Dip® Jr. were introduced and new private label partnerships were formed.
These product introductions and new Industrial Distribution opportunities generated growth for Plasti Dip International through the 90’s. The 1990’s were also a time of change. Sadly in 1998 Founder and CEO Robert Haasl passed away and President Scott Haasl took over as President and CEO of PDI. Soon after, Scott along with newly named Sales and Marketing VP, Dan Ruege identified the need to clarify our market message and position and developed a new umbrella brand with the assistance of Addison Whitney. Read more about this journey and its results.
In the new millennium Plasti Dip International continues to expand its new Performix® Brand product offering and distribution opportunities. With continued growth and the need for greater operating efficiency to remain competitive President Scott Haasl along with the Management Team decided it was necessary to take the next step towards the future and to design and build a new state of the art manufacturing facility to house all its operations in one location and not only meet but exceed environmental and safety requirements. The result was a highly efficient facility which reduced material handling significantly and gained efficiencies throughout the operation.
INDUSTRIAL Distribution continues to grow with the introduction of new Performix® Brand products and through new partnerships.
OEM continues to lead the specialty foam coatings industry by developing and introducing several new water base and low VOC/ HAP’s coatings. New Performix® Brand specialty coatings were also developed and introduced to the in mold coatings [IMC] market for flexible and rigid foams. The combination of new markets and a focus on products that have lower environmental impact continue to put Plasti Dip at the front of the industry.
In 2006 Plasti Dip International begins implementation of a fully integrated manufacturing software system. This new system will provide the necessary information to operate efficiently with real time inventory and flexible manufacturing options to meet build to stock and build to ship requirements. Completion is anticipated early 2009. In January 2008 Plasti Dip International goes live with its new website with tremendous response. The new website capitalizes on the Performix® Brand strength and provides users with a great deal of valuable content.
Plasti Dip, Performix Brand and logo, VLP, HCF, PDC, eccs and Plastiseam are all registered trademarks of Plasti Dip International. Gumby and Pokey are registered trademarks of Prema Toy Company. Scotchgard is a registered trademark of 3M. Minnesota Twins is a registered trademark of the Minnesota Twins. Ace Hardware is a registered trademark of Ace Hardware Corporation. Sears is a registered trademark of Sears Holdings Corporation. Holiday Inn is a registered trademark of IHG.