Karine Accassin, PPG sales manager, Architectural Coatings (AC), French Overseas, stands behind the first ever COLORFUL COMMUNITIES® project in Guadeloupe. With her visionary spirit, she managed to gather over 160 volunteers for the project. Be it on a personal or professional level, Karine is invested in helping communities prosper.
Guadeloupe: Challenged By The Harsh Climate
In PPG Guadeloupe, Karine has the role of AC sales manager. She works with the region of the French Overseas, which includes Guadeloupe and its dependencies. On a day-to-day basis, she attends customer interviews, site visits, sales meetings, and follow-up business activities.
The Guadeloupe market is relatively small. This is the cause of its high competitiveness and instability. Karine compares it to an everyday fight and a desire to find the best solutions for the customers.
"I cannot afford to be tired or to make mistakes. Me and my whole team have to be constantly on the lookout, challenged and very much awake."
The flagship brand of Guadeloupe, SEIGNEURIE™ paint by PPG, has a long local history. Most of its customers across all islands are resellers, DIY craftsmen, paint- and diffuse companies. A lot of the paint is used for renovations because of an aggressive climate. The local production is constantly adapting to the problem of climate, trying to innovate and meet the needs of customers.
In Guadeloupe, there are 5 PPG points of sale in total. The headquarters is in Les Abymes, which is also the location of the paint factory. The local team consists of 29 employees.
Karine highlights that her biggest motivation comes from her colleagues. "I have the most amazing sales team in Guadeloupe. They fight every day to meet the demands of our customers."
Painting "The Colors of Love"
Late 2022, when the Fiona storm heavily damaged the Notre-Dame-De-Grâce school in Les Abymes, Karine presented the Colorful Communities project to the director and the staff. She was met with distrust at first, but Karine's vision was strong and she did not give up. She even presented the project at a meeting with the parents of the children who were attending the school.
Just thanks to her persistence, Karine managed to gather 162 volunteers from the school to help bring the Colorful Communities project to reality, along with the local PPG Seigneurie team.
The painting itself took place during the very last days of December and some volunteers even came on the 1st of January. Karine compares the school on those days to a construction site and herself to the chief. "I was there all the time. I was keeping an eye on the supplies, the quotes, checking on the volunteers as they worked. It was all the coordination from A to Z that I had to do."
On both days, it was raining quite heavily, but that did not discourage the volunteers. Many people from the local media came to film, talk and write about the so-called "colors of love". The New Year celebrations are rather significant for the people of Guadeloupe, so Karine was moved by how many of them took their time and decided to help the community, putting the celebrations aside.
Of course, Karine was in the driver's seat of the whole operation at all times, like her manager and friend Yannick Lebrech, the regional director of Caribbean, AC, French Overseas, confirms:
According to Karine, the most inspiring and touching part was to see how everyone worked together. Not just the volunteers, but also her team. "We had our factory workers, the finance department, the sales department, production, logistics, all of them contributing. The true One PPG spirit!"
Aside from being rewarded by the happiness of the children and school staff, Karine also states that the Colorful Communities project succeeded in making the locals see the more human side of Seigneurie and PPG.
A Volunteer By Heart
Karine Accassin is like a magnet, making people gravitate towards her and stick together as a result. Even when asked about her hobbies, she names volunteering. And basketball. "I have my basketball class which brings together more than 250 children every year."
Last October, on behalf of the Seigneurie brand, Karine even organized a charity run, where she was able to gather 620 participants, compared to the expected 100. All proceeds from the participation fees went to the associations that fight against sickle cell disease, which mainly affects the Caribbean and African population.
Karine leads by example and has a very goal-oriented mindset. No matter the difficulties, she always searches for solutions. Be it on a professional or personal level, she strives to support and serve communities. At the same time, she reminds us that nor the Colorful Communities, or the above-mentioned charity run would have been possible without the surprising commitment of her team and all the volunteers around her.