About the company

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Company history

The beginnings of the company date back to the year 1924, when the joint stock company Ljudevit Marx, Tovarna lakov Domžale was founded. In this company they startedto producepaints and lacquers in the contemporary, industrial way, first for the domestic and then forthe foreign market. In the first year of the company’s operations the company produced 150 tons of paints and lacquers as well as other special coatings.

1936: The main products were enamels, oil paints, enamels indifferent colour shades, special paints BIFAX, car enamels VIRCO, parquet polishing pastes, agents for paint removal, etc. Among numerous products the best known was then TESSAROL, which is still today the reputable brand name in the area of decorative coatings.

: The company had 22 employees and produced approx. 220 tons of different products. In the factory they had 17 kettles for enamels, 16 mills formilling of paints, 3 mixing machines, 2 centrifuges and a filling device. The production with a decreased capacity operated also during the Second World Warand had its own laboratory.

1945: After the year 1945 the company went through numerous status and organizational changes. Firstly, it operated as a governmental company, in 1949 it was accessed to the Color Medvode company by a decree adopted by the government of the People’s Republic of Slovenia and later in 1952 it became an independent company called Tovarna lakov (ex Marx) Domžale.

1954: Tovarna lakov (ex Marx) Domžale changed its name to Helios, Tovarna lakov Domžale.

1959: Helios Tovarna barv in lakov merged withKemična tovarna Domžale (the beginnings of which date back to 1926) into a new company ZKI (Associated Chemical Industry of Domžale) with two independent production units in Količevo and Domžale. Ten years later (1969), ZKI changed its name to: HELIOS, Kemična industrija Domžale.

1970 1976: In this period the company gave priority to increasing the capacities for synthetic resins withaccompanying infrastructure. The construction of a modern production unit for synthetic resins simultaneously enabled the construction of a building aimed at the production of pigment coatings. During that time, the new brand of refinishing coatings called MOBIHEL was initiated.

1974: In this year Helios incorporated TKK Srpenica and further in 1978, Oljarna Domžale. (During the period of ownership transformation, these two companies left the Helios system.)

1979 1981: Helios marched successfully on foreign markets, the share of exports accounted for more than 60% of production, of which the largest portion went to the Soviet Union. At the same time, the company became the leading Yugoslav producer of paints and coatings. During that time (1979), the Research Centre was established.


1981: In 1981, Helios, which in line with the applicable legislation was comprised of the following „basic organisation of associated labour”: TBLUS, KTD, TKK Srpenica, Oljarna Domžale and Delovna skupnost skupnih služb (i.e. labour community of joint services) got a new manager. The helm of the company was taken over by Uroš Slavinec. Earlier, Helios was managed by Srečko Satler, Jerislav Cukrov and Jurij Detiček. In the period 1986/90, when Uroš Slavinec took over the presidency of the Republic Committee for Industry and Construction, Helios was managed by Stane Guštinand Aleksander Kokot. In 1990, Uroš Slavinec again took over the managing of Helios.

1990: That year was also marked by the reorganization of Helios, performed in line with the Companies Act. The end of this period was also the end of a ten-company chemical industry joint venture, which merged in 1981 into a company called SOZD Kemija with its headquarters in Ljubljana.

1991 1994: During this period, Helios gave priority to investments aimed at the renewal of production and warehouse capacities and the expansion of markets, representatives and companies founded abroad; however, there were also significant strivings to achieve higher quality and fire safety as well as an ecological consciousness. During that time, Helios developed a new corporate identity. Further, the project of integrated quality control was initiated, the main goal of which was the acquisition of the international quality control certificate ISO 9001 (which was realised in 1994). A new brand called BORI was initiated. In 1991, the Centre of Fire Safetybegan its operation – the Centre presented a significant acquisition in the area of prevention and intervention in cases of fire and other accidents in the wider neighbourhood.


1995 1998: In 1995 the new brand called SPEKTRA and the new MOBIHEL mixing systemmade their appearance on the market. Helios was registered in the Register of Companies and became a joint stock company. The first general meeting of shareholders of Helios was held on 26th June 1996. In this way one of the most extensive and demanding projects of the period 1991/96 was formally concluded. Two years later the Information Distribution Centre (IDC) was open, in accordance with the improvement and internal up-grading the decision was adopted on the introduction of the business – information system BaaN IV.Helios started to implement the project of integrated employee education; TQM (Total Quality management) services were established; the company started the project of the sustainable progress. In 1998, Helios Ecology Fund was established in partnership with the Ministry of Environment, Spatial Planning and Energy, which is intended for the performance of projects for cleaning of Karst caves and revitalisation of local wells.

1999 2003: This period was primarily marked by structural changes, development transformations, joint capital investments and the realization of numerous strategic projects. The superstructure of the mechanical workshop was completed, giving new premises to the department of logistics, in the context of the research centre and quality control, new lacquer and spray chambers were constructed, the synthetic resins production unit was enriched with a new reactor, while the pigment coatings productionunit underwent a complete renovation.

The very peak of investments in the central location in Količevo was hallmarked in 2003, when new production capacity for road marking paintswas put into operation in the pigment coatings production unit, when the new construction coatings production unit was finished along with storage room capacities.


2004 2008: The performance of current projects was continued, at Količevo the modernisationof the pigment coatings production unit , building of a modern warehouse and reconstruction of production lines were completed. Helios, Tovarna barv, lakov in umetnih smol Količevo obtained the certificate OHSAS 18001 (2006), whichconfirms the set up of an efficient and appropriate managing system, safety and health at work, in the same year Helios also obtained the award TOP 10, handed over by the company GV Izobraževanje. In 2008, at the world day of waters, 22nd March, a further five years’ agreement will be signed with the Ministry of Environment and Spatial planning regarding the activities of Helios’s fund for keeping Slovene rivers clean.