Plasti Dip International began in Minnesota in 1972 as a manufacturer of specialty rubber coatings and has grown to develop and manufacture the highest quality coatings, sealants and adhesives on the market, including Plasti Dip® — the original peelable, flexible, insulating, non-slip, durable, rubber coating. For more than 40 years, Plasti Dip International has been creating original solutions for industrial applications, home improvement, and crafty consumer projects.
Back in December of 1972, Plasti Dip International began in St. Louis Park, MN, as a small manufacturer of Plastisol products. We made toys (such as Gumby® and Pokey®), handle grips and chain saw scabbards. Founder and President Robert Haasl soon developed the world’s first air-dry do-it-yourself (DIY) rubberized coating: Plasti Dip, intended for dipping tool handles to improve grip.
But Plasti Dip was just one in a series of innovative products we created that decade. Other inventions include:
- 3-Way Racket Spray for leather sport grips
- Super Grip® (endorsed by Arnold Palmer and Tony Oliva of the Minnesota Twins®)
- Vinyl Leather Repair (VLP®)
- Water Guard (competitor of Scotchgard®)
- Water Bed Repair Kits
Getting these unique products sold through ACE Hardware®, Sears® and other hardware retailers and distributors put Plasti Dip International on the map.
In the 1980s Plasti Dip International became known as PDI, and widened its development to include new coatings for DIY, industrial and commercial uses. Some of the unique applications included testing on bridges in Minnesota, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, concrete swimming pools for Holiday Inn® Hotels and meat processing plants across the country. Oh and the Golden Gate Bridge.
In the mid-80s, Head of Industrial Sales and son of founder Robert Haasl, Scott Haasl pursued a new direction—protective coatings for flexible foams. Only a few short years later, PDI was already recognized as the industry leader in the category. These new coatings protect medical positioning pads used for surgery, imaging and wheelchair seating systems, as well as pool floats, wrestling mats and martial arts gear.
Other creations of the 80s include:
- HCF® Protective Coating
- Plasti Dip Brush (world’s first brush-able high-performance, water-based coating)
- Plasti Dip Aerosol Spray Cans
- Plastiseam® (fabric seam sealer)
- Vyna Bond (fabric repair)
Due to this growth, PDI needed to design and build our first special purpose facility in 1987.
In the 1990s we introduced Liquid Tape Brush containers and through our new product development, we remained a leader in emission reduction with our green technology.
There was great growth, but also sadness. In 1998 Founder and CEO Robert Haasl passed away and Scott Haasl took over as President and CEO. Scott, along with Sales and Marketing VP Dan Ruege, developed the new umbrella brand, Performix®, including a new look for our packaging.
In March of 1999, PDI returned to being known as Plasti Dip International.
We designed and built a high-efficiency facility to house all operations in one location, and our retailers continue to thrive with the introduction of new products and partnerships.
Here are some of our most recent, super-neat products:
- Create Your Color Kit
- Liquid Tape Spray
- ReRACK™ (dishwasher rack repair)
Nowadays, our passionate fan base is using Plasti Dip in creative new ways. We affectionately refer to them as Dipheads™, and their handy work is all over social media. From hardware to arts and crafts and even entire vehicles, the possibilities are endless.
Through it all, exceeding environmental and safety standards continues to be our top priority.
2010-2015 brought tremendous growth to Plasti Dip International through its super brand PLASTI DIP and PLASTI DIP SPRAY. The creation of the peelable, removable, decorative protection automotive market was emerging and took the automotive customization industry in a new and exciting direction for do-it-yourselfers and professional users alike. The culmination of hard work, extensive product development, social media and some luck came together to create this worldwide phenomenon. PLASTI DIP became a super brand inviting numerous knock offs around the world but due to the Dipheads™ who support the PLASTI DIP brand most, competitors retreated from the market while others who remain provide inferior products and hope to find some success following in the shadows of the industry originator PLASTI DIP.
To support this growth, Plasti Dip International worked closely with its aerosol packaging partner to open up a new 60,000 sq. ft. distribution center which supplies products to retail customers as well as export sales. Along with other key partners over 100,000 sq. ft. of space was needed to feed the new demand for PLASTI DIP products. This tremendous growth also created thousands of new jobs to support manufacturing and distribution as well as many new businesses started by professional installers of the PLASTI DIP products in the US and abroad. Given the challenging economic times, this already significant growth is even more impressive. Today you will find PLASTI DIP available at nearly every automotive, hardware, home center, discounter and online retailer.
To prepare for the next phase of growth in 2016 and beyond Plasti Dip International has created 2 separate and distinctly different websites to better serve its diverse customer base. Plastidip.com (and social media site dipheadsunite.com) are focused specifically on home use consumers markets while PerfomixCoatings.com is focused specifically on industrial markets and manufacturers. Along with new websites, several new products are being launched including new colors, finishes and low VOC 50 state compliant PLASTI DIP Spray 50 for automotive refinishing professionals and home users located in VOC restrictive areas of the country. New and exciting things are happening at Plasti Dip International. Check it out.
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.
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