Our Past History – A Synopsis
Our company was founded in 1953 by an industrious Italian national, Vittorino Meneghelli, seeking new challenges in South Africa to invest his personal knowledge in the brush trade gained from a family business and history spanning several decades. Although being a qualified accountant, the roots from being exposed so long to the family brush trade probably influenced his decision to attempt doing the same in his new surroundings and country.

He chose the name Academy Brushware for his newly founded business and used as logo and trademark the well known “LION”- statue presiding as guard over the priests’ palace next to the world famous cathedral in Venice, Italy.

This modest little venture started off in a backyard shack and gradually grew until the need arose to look for bigger and more accommodating premises from which to conduct the initial manufacturing and marketing of his humble paintbrushes. One black man was employed initially which Vittorino trained personally to produce paint brushes and eventually a person was employed to market and distribute those brushes.

As the business became established and grew, more people were employed in handling the administrative and order-packing functions and despatching responsibilities. As the paint brush production became the main force of the business an expansion program entailed the acquisition of a few brush-filling machines to satisfy the needs for moving into domestic brooms and affiliated brushes territory. The challenges were never ending and so a production line was started to produce paint rollers as well, now enabling the company and putting it into a position to offer a complete range of brushware to the domestic market.

This achievement was reached in the mid 1960’s, a mere 10 years after starting in it’s infant shoes. By this time the business had developed into a bustling organisation and dominating a fair share of the domestic market, It was also a founder member of the local Brushmakers Association administered and managed by the South African Bureau of Standards and a substantial range of it’s product are manufactured under SABS laid-down specifications as determined and drawn up by the Association. New designed products were continually introduced on a regular on-going basis and the already substantial range on offer expanded at a good pace, and during the mid 1970’s the Company was considered to rank amongst the top two brushmaking companies in the country.

Always looking for new challenges,the Company qualified to become an accredited user of the SABS – ISO 9001 Quality Standards business concept but after a few years eventually realized that the international AJA-UKAS ISO Standards held more promise for exposure to the markets globally, applied and won accreditation as a user to this quality system in February 2003.The company is currently also being recognized as the top ranking brushmaking establishment in the Republic of South Africa.

In it’s endeavour to become the best, the Company had won the distinction to produce a range of product recognized for it’s high quality standards over many years which brought along with it a long standing dedication to provide excellent service and outstanding customer relations in the supply of superior brushware.This is being achieved by applying the most advanced production methods in conjunction with modern technology machinery and a workforce dedicated in their purpose to deliver the best.

On the human resource side the Company boasts currently five directors on it’s board , a well trained management structure, administrative personnel, technical personnel and warehousing personnel, having a total workforce of approximately 320 people.

The company produce and distribute a complete range of painting utensils and tools, eg. from the traditional flat type paint brush, blockbrushes, sash tools, lining fitches, etc. to a very substantial paint roller range offering a wide choice of fabric application for various purposes.

In addition we also manufacture a wide choice of brooms, from domestic use to industrial purposes, scrubbs, shoe, banister and affiliated domestic brushes, like bottle brushes and sanitary brushes, mops, rakes, etc., the range so very diverse and sure to offer something to satisfy all needs and demands of the end-users in the marketplace.

We also boast an industrial division where very exact and specific brushes are produced to satisfy the needs of the vast majority of organizations in the economy and varied industry as a whole. These vary between road sweepers, rotary brushes, wire-twisted brushes, car washing applicators. These are either machine made, wire drawn or of manual manufacture. No matter the demands of the customer, we strive to satisfy.

We were very proud to celebrate the company’s 50th anniversary during 2003.