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The Dunedin painting company started by John Sims 59 years ago is in the process of being handed down to his sons, Glenn and Nathan.
Last month, Sims and Blue won eight awards — three gold and five highly commended — at the Master Painters New Zealand Awards of Excellence 2021.
The annual awards night was meant to be held alongside Master Painters NZ’s annual conference in Blenheim but had to be held online this year due to Covid-19 restrictions.
The gold awards were for two exterior paint jobs on character homes in Dunedin and another on the interior work of a house in Tunnel Beach Rd.
Four of the highly commended were also for exterior paint jobs on character homes and the other was for an exterior job on Otago Boys’ High School’s tower block.
It was ‘‘very exciting’’ to pick up so many awards at the national event, Glenn Sims said.
‘‘It is a real credit to the team and their hard work,’’ he said.
The company employed 13 people — 10 painters and three office staff — and like many businesses it was short on staff, Mr Sims said.
It had been a struggle to find suitable employees, he said.
‘‘Luckily, we have some staff that have been here for nearly 30 years and we are very lucky to have them.’’
Many builders throughout the country had been struggling with a shortage of materials, but painters had been lucky so far, only facing minor freight delays.
‘‘Particularly with Auckland’s borders being shut, but we are hoping that will improve,’’ Mr Sims said.
During last year’s lockdown he thought it was ‘‘game over’’ for the business after everything stopped for more than a month, Mr Sims said.
‘‘But that wasn’t the case. We’ve just grown and grown ever since,’’ he said.
Sims and Blue was already planning jobs for next spring, Mr Sims said.
Another Otago company to win at the awards was Andreus Painters Ltd, which picked up a gold award in the rework interior — character category.