Our History

It was 1992 in Greenwood, Indiana... Kirby South launched a small residential painting enterprise to help his son pay for college. With a few small tools and a Chevy Sprint, they set off to knock on doors and find referrals to paint homes and apartments.

By 1995, Janet South incorporated the small painting company into a formal business, which would become DECO Coatings. The business continues to evolve and expand as a leading industrial liquid coating company. Above all, DECO is changing the traditional field application model into controlled environment shop applications.

Through challenges and successes, Janet has treated the company “like a cruise ship, not a rowboat”, and has changed the focus to strictly industrial and heavy commercial coatings. Today DECO Coatings is the premier source for engineers, architects, and owners for collaboration in coatings specifications. We use the latest cutting edge products and technology, and continue to solve engineering problems with our trade secret solutions. Our location is a repurposed space in an urban area within an industrial complex.


Our Values

  • Safety First. Our commitment is to the highest standards of safety for DECO employees and our communities. Each employee receives OSHA 10 in addition to job specific safety training.

  • Integrity Matters. Transparency with customers and stakeholders is important to us. From project roll out to close out documents we maintain an open line of communication with our customers. Hospitality: In a high-tech world, nothing replaces an old-fashioned welcome. We have a barista bar in our office because we love to make our clients feel at home.

  • Team Work: At DECO Coatings, we hire for attitude and aptitude. Each project is unique, and the application process does not allow for error, so technique through teamwork is essential to our success.


  • Diversity & Inclusion. Diversity makes us stronger and has been woven into the fabric of our company. We are intentional in making sure that DECO provides equal opportunity through our hiring process, business to business practices, and even in our community outreach. Janet strategically chose the company’s repurposed urban location, making it more accessible for those using public transportation. She also partnered with local neighborhood training centers to create more jobs and capitalize on talent potential.

  • Excellence & Quality. We are proactive with our customers. At DECO Coatings, we lead the industry with the latest technology utilizing cloud-based tools that document coatings inspection reports (ISO traceable). Our technicians are trained in preparation, application, and use of technology to get the job done right the first time.

  • Giving Back. We give back to the community in tangible, practical ways. Skill sets learned at DECO change lives and enhance the future of generations to come. Our community outreach includes involvement with industry trade organizations to help grow neighborhood initiatives through education, community projects, mentorships, internships, sustainable resource support, and connecting with our neighbors.