Over a century of dedication and progress.

Our Heritage

Our history began in 1899, when Gus Sonneborn and the Rieck family established Sonneborn & Rieck Limited as a producer of French Polishes for pianos. Since then, we have evolved into a leading manufacturer of specialist paint coatings for automotive, wood and cosmetics packaging. In 2010, we became a part of the Fujikura Kasei Group, and our company name changed to Fujichem Sonneborn Limited (FCS) the following year.

Over the years, we have built a reputation for adapting to market demands and developing next-generation coating technologies without compromising our core values of product quality and customer satisfaction.

Today, we continue to improve the appearance and longevity of wood and plastic components with a steady flow of sustainable coating solutions, and nurture success through developing long-term partnerships with our customers and OEMs.

Gus Sonneborn and the Rieck Family
Sonneborn & Rieck interior coatings were used in Her Majesty’s Yacht Britannia - built in 1953

Enriching the Texture of Wood from Pianos to TV Cabinets


Established as Sonneborn & Rieck, a producer of clear French Polish for pianos and furniture.

1900 - 1930s

Introduced high gloss coatings for furniture and radio cabinets.

1930 - 1960s

Introduced stable polyester systems for TV cabinets.
Continued to grow in the wood coatings market.

Circa 1970, Chesterfield Manufacturing and Hainault Laboratories

New Beginnings – High Technology Coatings for Plastics

1970 - 1980s

Introduced coatings for automotive plastics and teletronics.
Launched “in-mould coatings” for automotive applications.


Introduced “scratch resistant coatings” for forward lighting.

Hainault Laboratories and R&D Centre - 2013

The Era of Widening Our Global Reach


A Global Alliance agreement was made with Fujikura Kasei Co., Ltd. & Red Spot Paint & Varnish Co. Inc.


Customer Service Unit opened in France.


Acquired by Fujikura Kasei Co., Ltd.


The name of the company was changed from Sonneborn & Rieck Limited to Fujichem Sonneborn Limited.
Exited from the powder coatings business.


New Production Hall, for automotive and UV coatings, opened in Chesterfield, Derbyshire.
Customer Service Unit opened in Germany.


Research & Development Centre opened in Hainault, Essex.


Winner of the British Coatings Federation “Sustainable Innovation Award” - FCS 3 Coat Chrome Effect Technology.


Hainault Headquarters renovated.
Application Centre opened in Hainault, Essex.
Lecture Room opened in Hainault, Essex.
Winner of the British Coatings Federation “Excellence in Training Award”.


Construction of the New Quality Control Laboratories started in Chesterfield, Derbyshire.