Our 100 Year History

Over its history, Hentzen Coatings has grown from a simple paint manufacturing company into a recognized leader of liquid and powder coatings. Still a family business, Hentzen Coatings’ deep roots in chemical engineering have led to nearly a century of innovative, high-quality, customized coatings for the aerospace, defense and general industrial markets. With operations in Wisconsin, Illinois, South Carolina, Florida and Queretaro, Hentzen continues to demonstrate its commitment to employees, the community and the environment.

1919–1922: Herbert & Erwin Hentzen entered the paint industry.


Brothers Herbert D. Hentzen, Sr. and Erwin A. Hentzen graduated from UWMadison with degrees in chemistry and chemical engineering; then began their lifetime careers in the paint industry. Herbert at DuPont Paint; Erwin for O’Neill Oil & Paint Company.

1923: Erwin left O’Neill Paint


Erwin left O’Neill Paint. With the help of his father, Albert L. Hentzen, Sr. as financial advisor and investor, Erwin began his own paint business as a proprietorship in rented space in a toy factory on N. 40th Street—next door to the family home in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

1924: Herbert joined Erwin to form WISCO-Hentzen


Herbert joined Erwin to form Wisconsin Paint Manufacturing with the trade name of WISCO-Hentzen.

1926: A new, larger facility built


A new, larger facility was built at 3710 N. Richards Street in Milwaukee. The location included offices, R&D and production facilities to meet increasing customer demand.


The first customers for industrial coatings were the Milwaukee Trunk Works and a major diesel engine manufacturer.