Company Quick10K Filing
Quick10K
Sherwin-Williams
Closing Price ($) Shares Out (MM) Market Cap ($MM)
$450.47 93 $41,750
10-K 2018-12-31 Annual: 2018-12-31
10-Q 2018-09-30 Quarter: 2018-09-30
10-Q 2018-06-30 Quarter: 2018-06-30
10-Q 2018-03-31 Quarter: 2018-03-31
10-K 2017-12-31 Annual: 2017-12-31
10-Q 2017-09-30 Quarter: 2017-09-30
10-Q 2017-06-30 Quarter: 2017-06-30
10-Q 2017-03-31 Quarter: 2017-03-31
10-K 2016-12-31 Annual: 2016-12-31
10-Q 2016-06-30 Quarter: 2016-06-30
10-Q 2016-03-31 Quarter: 2016-03-31
10-K 2015-12-31 Annual: 2015-12-31
10-Q 2015-09-30 Quarter: 2015-09-30
10-Q 2015-06-30 Quarter: 2015-06-30
10-Q 2015-03-31 Quarter: 2015-03-31
10-K 2014-12-31 Annual: 2014-12-31
10-Q 2014-09-30 Quarter: 2014-09-30
10-Q 2014-06-30 Quarter: 2014-06-30
10-Q 2014-03-31 Quarter: 2014-03-31
10-K 2013-12-31 Annual: 2013-12-31
8-K 2019-02-13 Officers, Exhibits
8-K 2019-01-31 Earnings, Exhibits
8-K 2019-01-15 Earnings, Exhibits
8-K 2018-10-25 Earnings, Exhibits
8-K 2018-10-17 Amend Bylaw, Exhibits
8-K 2018-09-06 Enter Agreement, Off-BS Arrangement, Exhibits
8-K 2018-07-26 Enter Agreement, Off-BS Arrangement, Exhibits
8-K 2018-07-24 Earnings, Exhibits
8-K 2018-07-19 Enter Agreement, Leave Agreement, Off-BS Arrangement, Exhibits
8-K 2018-04-24 Earnings, Exhibits
8-K 2018-04-18 Shareholder Vote
8-K 2018-02-27 Enter Agreement, Off-BS Arrangement, Exhibits
8-K 2018-01-25 Earnings, Exhibits
8-K 2018-01-17 Officers
8-K 2018-01-01 Officers, Exhibits
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IIJI Internet Initiative Japan 912
NTG Natco Group 899
REPL Replimune Group 396
KPTI Karyopharm Therapeutics 311
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SHW 2018-12-31
Part I
Item 1. Business
Item 1A. Risk Factors
Item 1B. Unresolved Staff Comments
Item 2. Properties
Item 3. Legal Proceedings
Item 4. Mine Safety Disclosures
Part II
Item 5. Market for Registrant's Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
Item 6. Selected Financial Data
Item 7. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations
Item 7A. Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk
Item 8. Financial Statements and Supplementary Data
Item 9. Changes in and Disagreements with Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure
Item 9A. Controls and Procedures
Item 9B. Other Information
Part III
Item 10. Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance
Item 11. Executive Compensation
Item 12. Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters
Item 13. Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence
Item 14. Principal Accountant Fees and Services
Part IV
Item 15. Exhibits and Financial Statement Schedules
Item 16. Form 10-K Summary
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Sherwin-Williams Earnings 2018-12-31

SHW 10K Annual Report

Balance SheetIncome StatementCash Flow

10-K 1 shw-12312018x10k.htm 10-K Document
UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
FORM 10-K
ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF
THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2018
Commission file number 1-04851
 
THE SHERWIN-WILLIAMS COMPANY
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)
OHIO
  
34-0526850
(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)
  
(I.R.S. Employer Identification No.)
101 West Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio
  
44115-1075
(Address of principal executive offices)
  
(Zip Code)
(216) 566-2000
Registrant’s telephone number, including area code
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:
Title of each class
  
Name of each exchange on which registered
Common Stock, Par Value $1.00
  
New York Stock Exchange
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
None
Indicate by check mark if the Registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes  x        No  o
Indicate by check mark if the Registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Exchange Act.        Yes  o        No  x
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant: (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the Registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days.        Yes  x        No  o
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the Registrant was required to submit such files).        Yes  x        No  o
Indicate by check mark if disclosure of delinquent filers pursuant to Item 405 of Regulation S-K (§ 229.405 of this chapter) is not contained herein, and will not be contained, to the best of Registrant’s knowledge, in definitive proxy or information statements incorporated by reference in Part III of this Form 10-K or any amendment to this Form 10-K.         o
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company, or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company” and "emerging growth company" in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act. (Check one:)
Large accelerated filer
x
 
Accelerated filer
o
 
 
 
 
 
Non-accelerated filer
o
 
Smaller reporting company
o
 
 
 
 
 
Emerging growth company
o
 
 
 
          
If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act.    o  
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act).         Yes  o        No  x
At January 31, 2019, 92,718,270 shares of common stock were outstanding, net of treasury shares. The aggregate market value of common stock held by non-affiliates of the Registrant at June 30, 2018 was $37,995,087,928 (computed by reference to the price at which the common stock was last sold on such date).
DOCUMENTS INCORPORATED BY REFERENCE
Portions of our Annual Report to Shareholders for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2018 (“2018 Annual Report”) are incorporated by reference into Parts I, II and IV of this report.
Portions of our Proxy Statement for the 2019 Annual Meeting of Shareholders (“Proxy Statement”) to be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission within 120 days of our fiscal year ended December 31, 2018 are incorporated by reference into Part III of this report.



THE SHERWIN-WILLIAMS COMPANY
Table of Contents
 
  
 
Page
 
 
Item 1.
 
Item 1A.
Item 1B.
Item 2.
Item 3.
Item 4.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Item 5.
Item 6.
Item 7.
Item 7A.
Item 8.
Item 9.
Item 9A.
Item 9B.
 
 
 
 
 
Item 10.
Item 11.
Item 12.
Item 13.
Item 14.
 
 
 
 
 
Item 15.
Item 16.
 




PART I
ITEM 1.    BUSINESS
Introduction
The Sherwin-Williams Company, founded in 1866 and incorporated in Ohio in 1884, is engaged in the development, manufacture, distribution and sale of paint, coatings and related products to professional, industrial, commercial and retail customers primarily in North and South America with additional operations in the Caribbean region, Europe, Asia and Australia. Our principal executive offices are located at 101 West Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44115-1075, telephone (216) 566-2000. As used in this report, the terms “Sherwin-Williams,” “Company,” “we” and “our” mean The Sherwin-Williams Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless the context indicates otherwise.
Available Information
We make available free of charge on or through our website our Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K, and amendments to these reports, as soon as reasonably practicable after we electronically file such material with, or furnish such material to, the Securities and Exchange Commission. You may access these documents on the “Investor Relations” page of our website at www.sherwin.com.
We also make available free of charge on our website our Corporate Governance Guidelines, our Director Independence Standards, our Code of Conduct and the charters of our Audit Committee, our Compensation and Management Development Committee and our Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee. You may access these documents in the “Corporate Governance” section on the “Investor Relations” page of our website at www.sherwin.com.
Basis of Reportable Segments
The Company reports its segment information in the same way that management internally organizes its business for assessing performance and making decisions regarding allocation of resources in accordance with the Segment Reporting Topic of the Accounting Standards Codification (ASC). The Company has three reportable operating segments: The Americas Group, Consumer Brands Group and Performance Coatings Group (individually, a "Reportable Segment" and collectively, the “Reportable Segments”). Factors considered in determining the three Reportable Segments of the Company include the nature of business activities, the management structure directly accountable to the Company’s chief operating decision maker (CODM) for operating and administrative activities, availability of discrete financial information and information presented to the Board of Directors. The Company reports all other business activities and immaterial operating segments that are not reportable in the Administrative segment. For more information about the Reportable Segments, see pages 8 through 15 of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
The Company’s CODM has been identified as the Chief Executive Officer because he has final authority over performance assessment and resource allocation decisions. Because of the diverse operations of the Company, the CODM regularly receives discrete financial information about each Reportable Segment as well as a significant amount of additional financial information about certain divisions, business units or subsidiaries of the Company. The CODM uses all such financial information for performance assessment and resource allocation decisions. The CODM evaluates the performance of and allocates resources to the Reportable Segments based on profit or loss before income taxes and cash generated from operations. The accounting policies of the Reportable Segments are the same as those described in Note 1 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on pages 45 through 49 of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
The Americas Group
The Americas Group consisted of 4,696 company-operated specialty paint stores in the United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean region at December 31, 2018. Each store in this segment is engaged in servicing the needs of architectural and industrial paint contractors and do-it-yourself homeowners. The Americas Group company-owned stores market and sell Sherwin-Williams® and other controlled brand architectural paint and coatings, protective and marine products, OEM product finishes and related products. The majority of these products are produced by manufacturing facilities in the Consumer Brands Group. In addition, each store sells select purchased associated products. In addition to our stores in the Latin America region, The Americas Group meets regional customer demands through developing, licensing, manufacturing, distributing and selling a variety of architectural paints, coatings and related products in North and South America. The loss of any single customer would not have a material adverse effect on the business of this segment. At December 31, 2018, The Americas Group consisted of operations from subsidiaries in 10 foreign countries. During 2018, this segment opened 76 net new stores, consisting of 91 new stores opened (74 in the United States, 16 in Canada, and 1 in South America) and 15 stores closed (1 in the United States, 2 in Canada, 11 in South America and 1 in Mexico). In 2017 and 2016, this segment opened 101 and 142 net new stores, respectively. A map on the cover flap of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference, shows the number of paint stores and their geographic location. The CODM uses discrete financial information about

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The Americas Group, supplemented with information by geographic region, product type and customer type, to assess performance of and allocate resources to The Americas Group as a whole. In accordance with ASC 280-10-50-9, The Americas Group as a whole is considered the operating segment, and because it meets the criteria in ASC 280-10-50-10, it is also considered a Reportable Segment.
Consumer Brands Group
The Consumer Brands Group supplies a broad portfolio of branded and private-label architectural paint, stains, varnishes, industrial products, wood finishes products, wood preservatives, applicators, corrosion inhibitors, aerosols, caulks and adhesives to retailers and distributors throughout North America, as well as in Australia, New Zealand, China and Europe. The Consumer Brands Group also supports the Company's other businesses around the world with new product research and development, manufacturing, distribution and logistics. Approximately 55.82% of the total sales of the Consumer Brands Group in 2018 were intersegment transfers of products primarily sold through The Americas Group. At December 31, 2018, the Consumer Brands Group consisted of operations in the United States and subsidiaries in 6 foreign countries, including company-operated outlets in Australia and New Zealand. A map on the cover flap of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference, shows the number of company-operated outlets and their location. Sales and marketing of certain controlled brand and private-label products is performed by a direct sales staff. The products distributed through third-party customers are intended for resale to the ultimate end-user of the product. The Consumer Brands Group had sales to certain customers that, individually, may be a significant portion of the sales of the segment. However, the loss of any single customer would not have a material adverse effect on the overall profitability of the segment. This segment incurred most of the Company’s capital expenditures related to ongoing environmental compliance measures at sites currently in operation. The CODM uses discrete financial information about the Consumer Brands Group, supplemented with information by product type and customer type, to assess performance of and allocate resources to the Consumer Brands Group as a whole. In accordance with ASC 280-10-50-9, the Consumer Brands Group as a whole is considered the operating segment, and because it meets the criteria in ASC 280-10-50-10, it is also considered a Reportable Segment.
Performance Coatings Group
The Performance Coatings Group develops and sells industrial coatings for wood finishing and general industrial (metal and plastic) applications, automotive refinish, protective and marine coatings, coil coatings, packaging coatings and performance-based resins and colorants worldwide. This segment licenses certain technology and trade names worldwide. Sherwin-Williams® and other controlled brand products are distributed through The Americas Group and this segment’s 282 company-operated branches and by a direct sales staff and outside sales representatives to retailers, dealers, jobbers, licensees and other third-party distributors. The Performance Coatings Group had sales to certain customers that, individually, may be a significant portion of the sales of the segment. However, the loss of any single customer would not have a material adverse effect on the overall profitability of the segment. During 2018, this segment opened 3 new branches and closed 11 branches for a net decrease of 8 branches. At December 31, 2018, the Performance Coatings Group consisted of operations in the United States and subsidiaries in 45 foreign countries. The CODM uses discrete financial information about the Performance Coatings Group, supplemented with information about geographic divisions, business units and subsidiaries, to assess performance of and allocate resources to the Performance Coatings Group as a whole. In accordance with ASC 280-10-50-9, the Performance Coatings Group as a whole is considered the operating segment, and because it meets the criteria in ASC 280-10-50-10, it is also considered a Reportable Segment. A map on the cover flap of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference, shows the number of branches and their geographic locations.
Administrative Segment
The Administrative segment includes the administrative expenses of the Company’s corporate headquarters site. Also included in the Administrative segment is interest expense, interest and investment income, certain expenses related to closed facilities and environmental-related matters, and other expenses which are not directly associated with the Reportable Segments. The Administrative segment does not include any significant foreign operations. Also included in the Administrative segment is a real estate management unit that is responsible for the ownership, management, and leasing of non-retail properties held primarily for use by the Company, including the Company’s headquarters site, and disposal of idle facilities. Sales of this segment represent external leasing revenue of excess headquarters space or leasing of facilities no longer used by the Company in its primary businesses. Material gains and losses from the sale of property are infrequent and not a significant operating factor in determining the performance of the Administrative segment.
Business Developments
For additional information regarding our business and business developments, see pages 8 through 15 of our 2018 Annual Report and the “Letter to Shareholders” on pages 2 through 7 of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.

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Raw Materials and Products Purchased for Resale
We believe we generally have adequate sources of raw materials and fuel supplies used in our business. There are sufficient suppliers of each product purchased for resale that none of the Reportable Segments anticipate any significant sourcing problems during 2019. See Item 1A Risk Factors for more information regarding cost and sourcing of raw materials.
Seasonality
The majority of the sales for the Reportable Segments traditionally occur during the second and third quarters. There is no significant seasonality in sales for the Administrative segment.
Working Capital
In order to meet increased demand during the second and third quarters, the Company usually builds its inventories during the first quarter. Working capital items (inventories and accounts receivable) are generally financed through short-term borrowings, which include the use of lines of credit and the issuance of commercial paper. For a description of the Company’s liquidity and capital resources, see pages 25 through 30 of our 2018 Annual Report under the caption “Financial Condition, Liquidity and Cash Flow” of “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” which is incorporated herein by reference.
Trademarks and Trade Names
Customer recognition of our trademarks and trade names collectively contribute significantly to our sales. The major trademarks and trade names used by each of the Reportable Segments are set forth below.
The Americas Group:    Sherwin-Williams®, A-100®, Cashmere®, Colorgin®, Condor®, Duracraft®, Duration Home®, Duration®, Emerald®, Harmony®, HGTV Home® by Sherwin- Williams, Kem Pro®, Kem Tone®, Krylon®, Loxon®, Marson®, Metalatex®, Minwax®, Novacor®, Paint Shield®, PrepRite®, ProClassic®, ProCraft ®, ProConstructor®, ProIndustrial™, ProMar®, ProPark®, Solo®, Sumaré®, SuperDeck®, SuperPaint®, Ultra Proteccion®, Woodscapes®
Consumer Brands Group:    Accurate Dispersions™, Altax™, Bestt Liebco®, Cabot®, Conco®, Duckback®, Dupli-Color®, DuraSeal®, Dutch Boy®, Geocel®, Granosite®, H&C®, HGTV HOME® by Sherwin-Williams, Huarun™, Kool Seal®, Krylon®, Minwax®, Pratt & Lambert®, Purdy®, Ronseal™, Rubberset®, Solver®, Sprayon®, SuperDeck®, Thompson’s® WaterSeal®, Tri-Flow®, Uniflex®, Valspar®, VHT®, Wattyl®, White Lightning®
Performance Coatings Group:    Sherwin-Williams®, Acrolon®, AcromaPro®, Arti™, ATX™, AWX Performance Plus™, Baco®, Conely®, DeBeer®, DFL™, Dimension®, Duraspar™, Envirolastic®, Euronavy®, Excelo®, Fastline®, Finish 1™, Firetex®, Fluropon®, Genesis®, Heat-Flex®, House of Kolor®, Huarun™, Inchem®, Inver®, Kem Aqua®, Lanet™, Lazzuril®, Macropoxy®, Magnalux™, Martin Senour®, Matrix®, ML Campbell®, Oece™, PermaClad®, Planet Color®, Polane®, Powdura®, Prospray®, Sayerlack®, Sher-Wood®, Ultra-Cure®, Ultra™, USC®, ValPure® V70, Valspar®, Wattyl®
Patents
Although patents and licenses are not of material importance to our business as a whole or any segment, The Americas Group and the Performance Coatings Group derive a portion of their income from the licensing of technology, trademarks and trade names to foreign companies.
Backlog and Productive Capacity
Backlog orders are not significant in the business of any Reportable Segment since there is normally a short period of time between the placing of an order and shipment. We believe that sufficient productive capacity currently exists to fulfill our needs for paint, coatings and related products through 2019.
Competition
We experience competition from many local, regional, national and international competitors of various sizes in the manufacture, distribution and sale of our paint, coatings and related products. We are a leading manufacturer and retailer of paint, coatings and related products to professional, industrial, commercial and retail customers, however, our competitive position varies for our different products and markets.
In The Americas Group, competitors include other paint and wallpaper stores, mass merchandisers, home centers, independent hardware stores, hardware chains and manufacturer-operated direct outlets. Product quality, product innovation, breadth of product line, technical expertise, service and price determine the competitive advantage for this segment.

3


In the Consumer Brands Group, domestic and foreign competitors include manufacturers and distributors of branded and private-label paint and coatings products. Technology, product quality, product innovation, breadth of product line, technical expertise, distribution, service and price are the key competitive factors for this segment.
The Performance Coatings Group has numerous competitors in its domestic and foreign markets with broad product offerings and several others with niche products. Key competitive factors for this segment include technology, product quality, product innovation, breadth of product line, technical expertise, distribution, service and price.
The Administrative segment has many competitors consisting of other real estate owners, developers and managers in areas in which this segment owns property. The main competitive factors are the availability of property and price.
Employees
We employed 53,368 persons at December 31, 2018.
Environmental Compliance
For additional information regarding environmental-related matters, see page 28 of our 2018 Annual Report under the caption “Environmental-Related Liabilities” of “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and Notes 1, 9 and 14 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on pages 47, 62 through 63 and 70, respectively, of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
CAUTIONARY STATEMENT REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION

Certain statements contained in “Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” “Letter to Shareholders” and elsewhere in this report constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the federal securities laws. These forward-looking statements are based upon management's current expectations, estimates, assumptions and beliefs concerning future events and conditions and may discuss, among other things, anticipated future performance (including sales and earnings), expected growth, future business plans and the costs and potential liability for environmental-related matters and the lead pigment and lead-based paint litigation. Any statement that is not historical in nature is a forward-looking statement and may be identified by the use of words and phrases such as "believe," "expect," "may," "will," "should," "project," "could," "plan," "goal," "potential," "seek," "intend" or "anticipate" or the negative thereof or comparable terminology.

Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are necessarily subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, many of which are outside our control, that could cause actual results to differ materially from such statements and from our historical results and experience. These risks, uncertainties and other factors include such things as:
general business conditions, strengths of retail and manufacturing economies and growth in the coatings industry;
changes in general domestic economic conditions such as inflation rates, interest rates, tax rates, unemployment rates, higher labor and healthcare costs, recessions, and changing government policies, laws and regulations;
changes in raw material and energy supplies and pricing;
changes in our relationships with customers and suppliers;
our ability to successfully integrate past and future acquisitions into our existing operations, including Valspar, as well as the performance of the businesses acquired;
risks inherent in the achievement of additional anticipated cost synergies resulting from the acquisition of Valspar and the timing thereof;
competitive factors, including pricing pressures and product innovation and quality;
our ability to attain cost savings from productivity initiatives;
risks and uncertainties associated with our expansion into and our operations in Asia, Europe, South America and other foreign markets, including general economic conditions, inflation rates, recessions, foreign currency exchange rates, foreign investment and repatriation restrictions, legal and regulatory constraints, civil unrest and other external economic and political factors;
the achievement of growth in foreign markets, such as Asia, Europe and South America;
increasingly stringent domestic and foreign governmental regulations, including those affecting health, safety and the environment;
inherent uncertainties involved in assessing our potential liability for environmental-related activities;
other changes in governmental policies, laws and regulations, including changes in tariff policies, as well as changes in accounting policies and standards and taxation requirements (such as new tax laws and new or revised tax law interpretations);

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the nature, cost, quantity and outcome of pending and future litigation and other claims, including the lead pigment and lead-based paint litigation, and the effect of any legislation and administrative regulations relating thereto; and
adverse weather conditions and natural disasters.

Readers are cautioned that it is not possible to predict or identify all of the risks, uncertainties and other factors that may affect future results and that the above list should not be considered to be a complete list. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which such statement is made, and we undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise except as otherwise required by law.
ITEM 1A.    RISK FACTORS
The risks described below and in other documents we file from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission could materially and adversely affect our business, results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
Adverse changes in general business and economic conditions in the United States and worldwide may adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
Our business is sensitive to global and regional business and economic conditions. Adverse changes in such conditions in the United States and worldwide may reduce the demand for some of our products and impair the ability of those with whom we do business to satisfy their obligations to us, each of which could adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition. Higher inflation rates, interest rates, tax rates and unemployment rates, higher labor and healthcare costs, recessions, changing governmental policies, laws and regulations, and other economic factors could also adversely affect demand for some of our products and our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition and that of our customers, vendors and suppliers.
A weakening or reversal of the general economic recovery in the United States and other countries and regions in which we do business, or the continuation or worsening of economic downturns in other countries and regions, may adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
Global economic uncertainty continues to exist. A weakening or reversal of the general economic recovery in the United States and other countries and regions in which we do business, or the continuation or worsening of economic downturns in other countries and regions, may adversely impact our net sales, the collection of accounts receivable, funding for working capital needs, expected cash flow generation from current and acquired businesses, and our investments, which may adversely impact our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
We finance a portion of our sales through trade credit. Credit markets remain tight, and some customers who require financing for their businesses have not been able to obtain necessary financing. A continuation or worsening of these conditions could limit our ability to collect our accounts receivable, which could adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
We generally fund a portion of our seasonal working capital needs and obtain funding for other general corporate purposes through short-term borrowings backed by our revolving credit facility and other financing facilities. If any of the banks in these credit and financing facilities are unable to perform on their commitments, such inability could adversely impact our cash flow, liquidity or financial condition, including our ability to obtain funding for working capital needs and other general corporate purposes.
Although we currently have available credit facilities to fund our current operating needs, we cannot be certain we will be able to replace our existing credit facilities or refinance our existing or future debt when necessary. Our cost of borrowing and ability to access the capital markets are affected not only by market conditions, but also by our debt and credit ratings assigned by the major credit rating agencies. Downgrades in these ratings will increase our cost of borrowing and could have an adverse effect on our access to the capital markets, including our access to the commercial paper market. An inability to access the capital markets could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
We have goodwill and intangible assets recorded on our balance sheet. We periodically evaluate the recoverability of the carrying value of our goodwill and intangible assets whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate such value may not be recoverable. An impairment assessment involves judgment as to assumptions regarding future sales and cash flow and the impact of market conditions on those assumptions. Future events and changing market conditions may impact our assumptions and change our estimates of future sales and cash flow, resulting in us incurring substantial impairment charges, which would adversely affect our results of operations or financial condition.
We hold investments in equity and debt securities in some of our defined benefit pension plans. A decrease in the value of plan assets resulting from a general financial downturn may cause a negative pension plan investment performance, which may adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.

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Protracted duration of economic downturns in cyclical segments of the economy may depress the demand for some of our products and adversely affect our sales, earnings, cash flow or financial condition.
Portions of our business involve the sale of paint, coatings and related products to segments of the economy that are cyclical in nature, particularly segments relating to construction, housing, manufacturing and oil production, refining, storage and transportation. Our sales to these segments are affected by the levels of discretionary consumer and business spending in these segments. During economic downturns in these segments, the levels of consumer and business discretionary spending may decrease, and the recovery of these segments may lag behind the recovery of the overall economy. This decrease in spending will likely reduce the demand for some of our products and may adversely affect our sales, earnings, cash flow or financial condition.
Throughout 2018, interest rates, including mortgage rates, rose and may continue to rise in 2019. Although interest rates remain low by historical standards, this increase may adversely affect the demand for new residential homes, existing home turnover and new non-residential construction. Challenging market conditions are expected to continue for the foreseeable future and may worsen. A worsening in these segments will reduce the demand for some of our products and may adversely impact sales, earnings and cash flow.
In the U.S. construction and housing segments, the recent demand for new construction has caused contractors to experience a shortage of skilled workers, resulting in project backlogs and an adverse effect on the growth rate of demand for our products. While we expect to see higher demand for our products as project backlogs are reduced in the future, this labor shortage may adversely impact our sales, earnings, cash flow or financial condition.
Increases in the cost of raw materials and energy may adversely affect our earnings or cash flow.
We purchase raw materials (including titanium dioxide and petrochemical feedstock sources, such as propylene and ethylene) and energy for use in the manufacturing, distribution and sale of our products. Factors such as political instability, higher tariffs and adverse weather conditions, including hurricanes, and other natural disasters can disrupt raw material and fuel supplies and increase our costs. Although raw materials and energy supplies (including oil and natural gas) are generally available from various sources in sufficient quantities, unexpected shortages and increases in the cost of raw materials and energy, or any deterioration in our relationships with or the financial viability of our suppliers, may have an adverse effect on our earnings or cash flow in the event we are unable to offset higher costs in a timely manner by sufficiently decreasing our operating costs or raising the prices of our products. In recent years, some raw material and energy prices have increased, particularly titanium dioxide and petrochemical feedstock sources, such as propylene and ethylene, as well as metal and plastic packaging. The cost of raw materials and energy has in the past experienced, and likely will in the future continue to experience, periods of volatility.
Although we have an extensive customer base, the loss of any of our largest customers could adversely affect our sales, earnings or cash flow.
We have a large and varied customer base due to our extensive distribution network. During 2018, no individual customer accounted for sales totaling more than ten percent of our sales. However, we have some customers that, individually, purchase a large amount of products from us. Although our broad distribution channels help to minimize the impact of the loss of any one customer, the loss of any of these large customers could have an adverse effect on our sales, earnings or cash flow.
Increased competition may reduce our sales, earnings or cash flow performance.
We face substantial competition from many international, national, regional and local competitors of various sizes in the manufacture, distribution and sale of our paint, coatings and related products. Some of our competitors are larger than us and have greater financial resources to compete. Other competitors are smaller and may be able to offer more specialized products. Technology, product quality, product innovation, breadth of product line, technical expertise, distribution, service and price are the key competitive factors for our business. Competition in any of these areas may reduce our sales and adversely affect our earnings or cash flow by resulting in decreased sales volumes, reduced prices and increased costs of manufacturing, distributing and selling our products.
We may not realize the growth opportunities and cost synergies that are anticipated from the acquisition of Valspar.
The benefits that are expected to result from the acquisition of Valspar will depend, in part, on our ability to realize the anticipated growth opportunities and additional cost synergies as a result of the acquisition. Our success in realizing these growth opportunities and additional cost synergies, and the timing of this realization, depends on the successful integration of Valspar. There is a significant degree of difficulty and management distraction inherent in the process of integrating an acquisition as sizable as Valspar. The process of integrating operations could cause an interruption of, or loss of momentum in, our activities. Members of our senior management may be required to devote considerable amounts of time to this integration process, which will decrease the time available to manage our company, service existing customers, attract new customers, and

6


develop new products or strategies. If senior management is not able to effectively manage the integration process, or if any significant business activities are interrupted as a result of the integration process, our business could suffer. There can be no assurance we will successfully or cost-effectively integrate Valspar. The failure to do so could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, and results of operations.
Even if we are able to integrate Valspar successfully, this integration may not result in the realization of the full benefits of the growth opportunities and additional cost synergies we currently expect from this integration. We also cannot guarantee these benefits will be achieved within anticipated time frames or at all. For example, we may not be able to eliminate all duplicative costs, and we may incur substantial, unanticipated expenses in connection with the Valspar integration. While we expect certain expenses will be incurred to achieve cost synergies, such expenses are difficult to estimate accurately, and may exceed current estimates. Accordingly, the benefits from the acquisition may be offset by costs incurred to, or delays in, integrating the businesses.

We require a significant amount of cash to service the substantial amount of debt we have outstanding. Our ability to generate cash depends on many factors beyond our control. We also depend on the business of our subsidiaries to satisfy our cash needs. If we cannot generate the required cash, we may not be able to make the necessary payments required under our indebtedness.
At December 31, 2018, we had total debt of approximately $9.3 billion, which is a decrease of $1.2 billion since December 31, 2017 and includes indebtedness incurred to complete the Valspar acquisition. We have the ability under our existing credit facilities to incur substantial additional indebtedness in the future. Our ability to make payments on our debt, fund our other liquidity needs, and make planned capital expenditures will depend on our ability to generate cash in the future. Our historical financial results have been, and we anticipate our future financial results will be, subject to fluctuations. Our ability to generate cash, to a certain extent, is subject to general economic, financial, competitive, legislative, regulatory and other factors beyond our control. We cannot guarantee our business will generate sufficient cash flow from our operations or future borrowings will be available to us in an amount sufficient to enable us to make payments of our debt, fund other liquidity needs and make planned capital expenditures.
The degree to which we are currently leveraged could have important consequences for shareholders. For example, it could:
require us to dedicate a substantial portion of our cash flow from operations to the payment of debt service, reducing the availability of our cash flow to fund working capital, capital expenditures, acquisitions and other general corporate purposes;
increase our vulnerability to adverse economic or industry conditions;
limit our ability to obtain additional financing in the future to enable us to react to changes in our business; or
place us at a competitive disadvantage compared to businesses in our industry that have less debt.

Additionally, any failure to comply with covenants in the instruments governing our debt could result in an event of default which, if not cured or waived, would have a material adverse effect on us.

A significant portion of our operations are conducted through our subsidiaries. As a result, our ability to generate sufficient cash flow for our needs is dependent to some extent on the earnings of our subsidiaries and the payment of those earnings to us in the form of dividends, loans or advances and through repayment of loans or advances from us. Our subsidiaries are separate and distinct legal entities. Our subsidiaries have no obligation to pay any amounts due on our debt or to provide us with funds to meet our cash flow needs, whether in the form of dividends, distributions, loans or other payments. In addition, any payment of dividends, loans or advances by our subsidiaries could be subject to statutory or contractual restrictions. Payments to us by our subsidiaries will also be contingent upon our subsidiaries’ earnings and business considerations. Our right to receive any assets of any of our subsidiaries upon their liquidation or reorganization will be effectively subordinated to the claims of that subsidiary’s creditors, including trade creditors. In addition, even if we are a creditor of any of our subsidiaries, our rights as a creditor would be subordinate to any security interest in the assets of our subsidiaries and any indebtedness of our subsidiaries senior to that held by us. Finally, changes in the laws of foreign jurisdictions in which we operate may adversely affect the ability of some of our foreign subsidiaries to repatriate funds to us.
Our results of operations, cash flow or financial condition may be negatively impacted if we do not successfully integrate future acquisitions into our existing operations and if the performance of the businesses we acquire do not meet our expectations.
We have historically made strategic acquisitions of businesses in the paint and coatings industry and will likely acquire additional businesses in the future as part of our long-term growth strategy. The success of future acquisitions depends in large part on our ability to integrate the operations and personnel of the acquired companies and manage challenges that may arise as

7


a result of the acquisitions, particularly when the acquired businesses operate in new or foreign markets. In the event we do not successfully integrate such future acquisitions into our existing operations so as to realize the expected return on our investment, our results of operations, cash flow or financial condition could be adversely affected.
Risks and uncertainties associated with our expansion into and our operations in Asia, Europe, South America and other foreign markets could adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
Net external sales of our consolidated foreign subsidiaries totaled approximately 23.0%, 19.8% and 14.5% of our total consolidated net sales in 2018, 2017 and 2016, respectively. Sales outside of the United States make up a significant part of our current business and future strategic plans. Our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition could be adversely affected by a variety of domestic and international factors, including general economic conditions, political instability, inflation rates, recessions, tariffs, foreign currency exchange rates, foreign currency exchange controls, interest rates, foreign investment and repatriation restrictions, legal and regulatory constraints, civil unrest, difficulties in staffing and managing foreign operations and other external economic and political factors. Our inability to successfully manage the risks and uncertainties relating to these factors could adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
In many foreign countries, it is acceptable to engage in certain business practices we are prohibited from engaging in because of regulations applicable to us, such as the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and the UK Bribery Act. Recent years have seen a substantial increase in anti-bribery law enforcement activity, with more frequent and aggressive investigations and enforcement proceedings by both U.S. and non-U.S. regulators, and an increase in criminal and civil proceedings brought against companies and individuals. Although we have internal control policies and procedures designed to ensure compliance with these regulations, there can be no assurance our policies and procedures will prevent a violation of these regulations. Any violation could cause an adverse effect on our results of operations, cash flow or financial condition.
Policy changes affecting international trade could adversely impact the demand for our products and our competitive position.

Due to the international scope of our operations, changes in government policies on foreign trade and investment may affect the demand for our products and services, impact the competitive position of our products or prevent us from being able to sell products in certain countries. Our business benefits from free trade agreements, such as the North American Free Trade Agreement and successor agreements, which may include the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, and efforts to withdraw from, or substantially modify such agreements, in addition to the implementation of more restrictive trade policies, such as more detailed inspections, higher tariffs, import or export licensing requirements, exchange controls or new barriers to entry, could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, financial condition or cash flow and that of our customers, vendors and suppliers.

Additionally, the results of the United Kingdom’s referendum on European Union membership, advising for the exit from the European Union, has caused and may continue to cause significant volatility in global stock markets, currency exchange rate fluctuations and global economic uncertainty. Although it is unknown what the terms of the United Kingdom’s future relationship with the European Union will be, it is possible there will be greater restrictions on imports and exports between the United Kingdom and the European Union and increased regulatory complexities. Any of these factors could adversely impact customer demand, our relationships with customers and suppliers and our results of operations.
Fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates could adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
Because of our international operations, we are exposed to risk associated with interest rates and value changes in foreign currencies, which may adversely affect our business. Historically, our reported net sales, earnings, cash flow and financial condition have been subjected to fluctuations in foreign exchange rates. Our primary exchange rate exposure is with the Euro, the Chinese yuan, the Brazilian real, the Canadian dollar, the British pound, the Mexican peso and the Australian dollar, each against the U.S. dollar. While we actively manage the exposure of our foreign currency risk as part of our overall financial risk management policy, we believe we may experience losses from foreign currency exchange rate fluctuations, and such losses could adversely affect our sales, earnings, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
We are subject to a wide variety of complex domestic and foreign laws, rules and regulations, for which compliance could adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow or financial condition.
We are subject to a wide variety of complex domestic and foreign laws, rules and regulations, and legal compliance risks, including securities laws, tax laws, employment and pension-related laws, competition laws, U.S. and foreign export and trading laws, data privacy and security laws, and laws governing improper business practices. We are affected by new laws and

8


regulations, and changes to existing laws and regulations, including interpretations by courts and regulators. From time to time, our Company, our operations and the industries in which we operate are being reviewed or investigated by regulators, which could lead to enforcement actions or the assertion of private litigation claims and damages.
Although we believe we have adopted appropriate risk management and compliance programs to mitigate these risks, the global and diverse nature of our operations means compliance risks will continue to exist. Investigations, examinations and other proceedings, the nature and outcome of which cannot be predicted, will likely arise from time to time. These investigations, examinations and other proceedings could subject us to significant liability and require us to take significant accruals or pay significant settlements, fines and penalties, which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, cash flow or financial condition.
We are subject to tax laws and regulations in the United States and multiple foreign jurisdictions. We are affected by changes in tax laws and regulations, as well as changes in related interpretations and other tax guidance. In the ordinary course of our business, we are subject to examinations and investigations by various tax authorities and other regulators. In addition to existing examinations and investigations, there could be additional examinations and investigations in the future, and existing examinations and investigations could be expanded.
On December 22, 2017, U.S. tax reform legislation known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “Tax Act”) was signed into law. The Tax Act made substantial changes to then-current U.S. tax law, including a reduction in the corporate tax rate, a limitation on deductibility of interest expense, a limitation on the use of net operating losses to offset future taxable income, the allowance of immediate expensing of capital expenditures, deemed repatriation of foreign earnings and significant changes to the taxation of foreign earnings going forward. The Tax Act contains numerous, complex provisions impacting U.S. multinational companies, and we continue to review and assess the legislative language and guidance promulgated by regulators to determine the Tax Act's full impact on us. The full extent of the impact remains uncertain at this time, and our current interpretations of, and assumptions regarding, the Tax Act are subject to additional regulatory or administrative developments, including any regulations or additional guidance promulgated by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service or other regulators. Further, we can provide no assurance our current interpretations of, and assumptions regarding, the Tax Act and any related regulations or guidance will not be reviewed or investigated by regulators in the future. As a result, the Tax Act, including any regulations or other guidance promulgated by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service or other regulators, and other tax laws could have significant effects on us, some of which could materially and adversely impact our financial condition, results of operations and cash flow.
For non-income tax risks, we estimate material loss contingencies and accrue for such loss contingencies as required by U.S. generally accepted accounting principles based on our assessment of contingencies where liability is deemed probable and reasonably estimable in light of the facts and circumstances known to us at a particular point in time. Subsequent developments may affect our assessment and estimates of the loss contingency. In the event the loss contingency is ultimately determined to be significantly higher than currently accrued, the recording of the additional liability may result in a material adverse effect on our results of operations or financial condition for the annual or interim period during which such additional liability is accrued. In those cases where no accrual is recorded because it is not probable a liability has been incurred and cannot be reasonably estimated, any potential liability ultimately determined to be attributable to us may result in a material adverse effect on our results of operations, cash flow or financial condition for the annual or interim period during which such liability is accrued or paid. For income tax risks, we recognize tax benefits based on our assessment that a tax benefit has a greater than 50% likelihood of being sustained upon ultimate settlement with the applicable taxing authority that has full knowledge of all relevant facts. For those income tax positions where we determine there is not a greater than 50% likelihood such tax benefits will be sustained, we do not recognize a tax benefit in our financial statements. Subsequent events may cause us to change our assessment of the likelihood of sustaining a previously-recognized benefit which could result in a material adverse effect on our results of operations, cash flow or financial position for the annual or interim period during which such liability is accrued or paid.
We discuss risks and uncertainties with regard to taxes in more detail in Note 15 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on pages 71 through 73 of our 2018 Annual Report.

Adverse weather conditions and natural disasters may temporarily reduce the demand for some of our products and could have a negative effect on our sales, earnings or cash flow.
Our business is seasonal in nature, with the second and third quarters typically generating a higher proportion of sales and earnings than other quarters. From time to time, adverse weather conditions and natural disasters have had an adverse effect on our sales of paint, coatings and related products. For example, during 2018 the impact of Hurricanes Michael and Florence, on our operations in Florida, the Carolinas and neighboring areas, as well as the wildfires in California, resulted in a temporary shutdown of some of our company-operated paint stores, manufacturing facilities and/or distribution centers in the affected regions, resulting in reduced revenues. In addition, unusually cold and rainy weather could have an adverse effect on sales of our exterior paint products. An adverse effect on sales may cause a reduction in our earnings or cash flow.

9


Inability to protect or enforce our material trademarks and other intellectual property rights could have an adverse effect on our business.
We have numerous patents, trade secrets, trademarks, trade names and know-how that are valuable to our business. Despite our efforts to protect such intellectual property and other proprietary information from unauthorized use or disclosure, third parties may attempt to disclose, obtain or use our trademarks or such other intellectual property and information without our authorization. Although we rely on the patent, trademark, trade secret and copyright laws of the United States and other countries to protect our intellectual property rights, the laws of some countries may not protect such rights to the same extent as the laws of the United States. Unauthorized use of our intellectual property by third parties, the failure of foreign countries to have laws to protect our intellectual property rights, or an inability to effectively enforce such rights in foreign countries could have an adverse effect on our business.
Security breaches and other disruptions to our information technology infrastructure could interfere with our operations, compromise our information and the information of our customers and suppliers and severely harm our business.
As part of our business, we collect, process, and retain sensitive and confidential personal information about our customers, employees and suppliers. Despite the security measures we have in place, our facilities and systems, and those of the retailers, dealers, licensees and other third-party suppliers and vendors with which we do business, may be vulnerable to security breaches, cyber attacks, acts of vandalism or misconduct, computer viruses, misplaced or lost data, programming and/or human errors or other similar events. Any security breach involving the misappropriation, loss or other unauthorized disclosure of confidential customer, employee, supplier or Company information, whether caused by us, an unknown third party, or the retailers, dealers, licensees or other third-party suppliers and vendors with which we do business, could result in losses, severely damage our reputation, expose us to the risks of litigation and liability, disrupt our operations and have a material adverse effect on our business, results of operations and financial condition. As cyber security threats evolve in sophistication and become more prevalent in numerous industries worldwide, we continue to increase our sensitivity and attention to these threats, seek additional investments and resources to address these threats and enhance the security of our facilities and systems and strengthen our controls and procedures implemented to monitor and mitigate these threats. The domestic and international regulatory environment related to information security, data collection and privacy is increasingly rigorous and complex, with new and constantly changing requirements applicable to our business. Compliance with these requirements, including the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation and other domestic and international regulations, could result in additional costs and changes to our business practices.

Moreover, we rely heavily on computer systems to manage and operate our business, record and process transactions, and manage, support and communicate with our employees, customers, suppliers and other vendors. Computer systems are important to production planning, finance, company operations and customer service, among other business-critical processes. Despite efforts to prevent disruptions to our computer systems, our systems may be affected by damage or interruption from, among other causes, power outages, system failures, computer viruses and other intrusions, including cyber attacks. Computer hardware and storage equipment that is integral to efficient operations, such as email, telephone and other functionality, is concentrated in certain physical locations in the various continents in which we operate. Additionally, we rely on software applications, enterprise cloud storage systems and cloud computing services provided by third-party vendors, and our business may be adversely affected by service disruptions in or security breaches to such third-party systems.
We are required to comply with numerous complex and increasingly stringent domestic and foreign health, safety and environmental laws and regulations, the cost of which is likely to increase and may adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow or financial condition.
Our operations are subject to various domestic and foreign health, safety and environmental laws and regulations. These laws and regulations not only govern our current operations and products, but also impose potential liability on us for our past operations. We expect health, safety and environmental laws and regulations to impose increasingly stringent requirements upon our industry and us in the future. Our costs to comply with these laws and regulations may increase as these requirements become more stringent in the future, and these increased costs may adversely affect our results of operations, cash flow or financial condition.
We are involved with environmental investigation and remediation activities at some of our currently and formerly owned sites, as well as a number of third-party sites, for which our ultimate liability may exceed the current amount we have accrued.
We are involved with environmental investigation and remediation activities at some of our currently and formerly owned sites and a number of third-party sites. We accrue for estimated costs of investigation and remediation activities at these sites for which commitments or clean-up plans have been developed and when such costs can be reasonably estimated based on industry standards and professional judgment. These estimated costs are based on currently available facts regarding each site.

10


We continuously assess our potential liability for investigation and remediation activities and adjust our environmental-related accruals as information becomes available upon which more accurate costs can be reasonably estimated. Due to the uncertainties surrounding environmental investigation and remediation activities, our liability may result in costs that are significantly higher than currently accrued and may have an adverse effect on our earnings. We discuss these risks and uncertainties in more detail on page 23 of our 2018 Annual Report under the caption “Environmental Matters,” page 28 of our 2018 Annual Report under the caption “Environmental-Related Liabilities” and in Note 9 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on pages 62 through 63 of our 2018 Annual Report.
The nature, cost, quantity and outcome of pending and future litigation, such as litigation arising from the historical manufacture and sale of lead pigments and lead-based paint, could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity and financial condition.
In the course of our business, we are subject to a variety of claims and lawsuits, including, but not limited to, litigation relating to product liability and warranty, personal injury, environmental, intellectual property, commercial, contractual and antitrust claims that are inherently subject to many uncertainties regarding the possibility of a loss to us. These uncertainties will ultimately be resolved when one or more future events occur or fail to occur confirming the incurrence of a liability or the reduction of a liability. In accordance with the Contingencies Topic of the ASC, we accrue for these contingencies by a charge to income when it is both probable that one or more future events will occur confirming the fact of a loss and the amount of the loss can be reasonably estimated. In the event a loss contingency is ultimately determined to be significantly higher than currently accrued, the recording of the additional liability may result in a material impact on our results of operations, liquidity or financial condition for the annual or interim period during which such additional liability is accrued. In those cases where no accrual is recorded because it is not probable that a liability has been incurred and the amount of any such loss cannot be reasonably estimated, any potential liability ultimately determined to be attributable to us may result in a material impact on our results of operations, liquidity or financial condition for the annual or interim period during which such liability is accrued.
Our past operations included the manufacture and sale of lead pigments and lead-based paints. Along with other companies, we are and have been a defendant in a number of legal proceedings, including individual personal injury actions, purported class actions and actions brought by various counties, cities, school districts and other government-related entities, arising from the manufacture and sale of lead pigments and lead-based paints. The plaintiffs' claims have been based upon various legal theories, including negligence, strict liability, breach of warranty, negligent misrepresentations and omissions, fraudulent misrepresentations and omissions, concert of action, civil conspiracy, violations of unfair trade practice and consumer protection laws, enterprise liability, market share liability, public nuisance, unjust enrichment and other theories. The plaintiffs seek various damages and relief, including personal injury and property damage, costs relating to the detection and abatement of lead-based paint from buildings, costs associated with a public education campaign, medical monitoring costs and others. We have also been a defendant in legal proceedings arising from the manufacture and sale of non-lead-based paints that seek recovery based upon various legal theories, including the failure to adequately warn of potential exposure to lead during surface preparation when using non-lead-based paint on surfaces previously painted with lead-based paint. We believe the litigation brought to date is without merit or subject to meritorious defenses and are vigorously defending such litigation. We have not settled any material lead pigment or lead-based paint litigation. We expect additional lead pigment and lead-based paint litigation may be filed against us in the future asserting similar or different legal theories and seeking similar or different types of damages and relief.
Notwithstanding our views on the merits, litigation is inherently subject to many uncertainties, and we ultimately may not prevail. Adverse court rulings, such as the court's decision in the Santa Clara County, California proceeding, the jury verdict against us and other defendants in the State of Rhode Island action and the Wisconsin State Supreme Court’s determination that Wisconsin’s risk contribution theory may apply in the lead pigment litigation, or determinations of liability, among other factors, could affect the lead pigment and lead-based paint litigation against us and encourage an increase in the number and nature of future claims and proceedings. In addition, from time to time, various legislation and administrative regulations have been enacted, promulgated or proposed to impose obligations on present and former manufacturers of lead pigments and lead-based paints respecting asserted health concerns associated with such products or to overturn the effect of court decisions in which we and other manufacturers have been successful.
Due to the uncertainties involved, management is unable to predict the outcome of the lead pigment and lead-based paint litigation, the number or nature of possible future claims and proceedings, or the effect any legislation and/or administrative regulations may have on the litigation or against us. In addition, management cannot reasonably determine the scope or amount of the potential costs and liabilities related to such litigation, or resulting from any such legislation and regulations. Except with respect to the litigation in California, we have not accrued any amounts for such litigation because we do not believe it is probable that a loss has occurred, and we believe it is not possible to estimate the range of potential losses as there is no substantive information upon which an estimate could be based. In addition, any potential liability that may result from any changes to legislation and regulations cannot reasonably be estimated. In the event any significant liability is determined to be attributable to us relating to such litigation, or any such liability is higher than any amount currently accrued for such litigation,

11


the recording of the liability, or additional liability, as applicable, may result in a material impact on net income for the annual or interim period during which such liability is accrued. Additionally, due to the uncertainties associated with the amount of any such liability and/or the nature of any other remedy which may be imposed in such litigation, any potential liability determined to be attributable to us arising out of such litigation may have a material adverse effect on our results of operations, cash flow, liquidity or financial condition.
We discuss the risks and uncertainties related to litigation, including the lead pigment and lead-based paint litigation, in more detail in Note 10 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on pages 63 through 67 of our 2018 Annual Report.
ITEM 1B.    UNRESOLVED STAFF COMMENTS
None.

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ITEM 2.    PROPERTIES
We own our world headquarters located in Cleveland, Ohio, which includes the world headquarters for The Americas Group, Consumer Brands Group and Performance Coatings Group. Our principal manufacturing and distribution facilities are located as set forth below. We believe our manufacturing and distribution facilities are well-maintained and are suitable and adequate, and have sufficient productive capacity, to meet our current needs.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Manufacturing
 
Distribution
 
 
Leased
Owned
Total
 
Leased
Owned
Total
Consumer Brands Group
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Asia
 
1
6
7
 
1
3
4
Australia and New Zealand
 
 
4
4
 
1
5
6
Canada
 
 
3
3
 
1
 
1
Europe
 
1
3
4
 
2
3
5
Jamaica
 
 
1
1
 
 
1
1
Latin America
 
3
6
9
 
4
5
9
United States
 
5
27
32
 
8
3
11
Total
 
10
50
60
 
17
20
37
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Performance Coatings Group
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Africa
 
 
1
1
 
 
1
1
Asia
 
2
5
7
 
2
4
6
Canada
 
 
1
1
 
 
 

Europe
 
4
19
23
 
5
13
18
Latin America
 
 
5
5
 
1
7
8
United States
 
1
12
13
 
1
12
13
Total
 
7
43
50
 
9
37
46
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The operations of The Americas Group included one manufacturing and distribution facility in Uruguay and 4,696 company-operated specialty paint stores, of which 217 were owned, in the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Grenada, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Maarten, Jamaica, Curacao, Aruba, St. Lucia, Uruguay, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Mexico, Ecuador and Barbados at December 31, 2018. These paint stores are divided into six separate operating divisions that are responsible for the sale of predominantly architectural, protective and marine and related products through the paint stores located within their geographical region. At the end of 2018:
the Mid Western Division operated 1,105 paint stores primarily located in the midwestern and upper west coast states;
the Eastern Division operated 868 paint stores along the upper east coast and New England states;
the Canada Division operated 241 paint stores throughout Canada;
the Southeastern Division operated 1,117 paint stores principally covering the lower east and gulf coast states, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Grenada, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Maarten, Jamaica, Curacao, Aruba, St. Lucia and Barbados;
the South Western Division operated 1,023 paint stores in the central plains and the lower west coast states; and
the Latin America Division operated 342 paint stores in Uruguay, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Mexico and Ecuador.
During 2018, The Americas Group opened 76 net new stores, consisting of 91 new stores opened (74 in the United States, 16 in Canada, and 1 in South America) and 15 stores closed (1 in the United States, 2 in Canada, 11 in South America and 1 in Mexico).
The Performance Coatings Group operated 223 branches in the United States, of which 8 were owned, at December 31, 2018. The Performance Coatings Group also operated 59 branches internationally, of which 6 were owned, at December 31,

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2018, consisting of branches in Canada (21), Europe (16), Chile (11), Mexico (4), Peru (4) and Vietnam (3). During 2018, this segment opened 3 new branches and closed 11 branches for a net decrease of (8) branches.
All real property within the Administrative segment is owned by us. For additional information regarding real property within the Administrative segment, see the information set forth in Item 1 of this report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
For additional information regarding real property leases, see Note 18 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on page 74 of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
ITEM 3.    LEGAL PROCEEDINGS
On September 14, 2018, the California Air Resources Board (“CARB”) issued a Notice of Violation to the Company for several aerosol coatings products that were allegedly labeled incorrectly or otherwise violated CARB rules. The Company entered into settlement negotiations with CARB in an attempt to resolve the alleged violations. On January 15, 2019, a settlement conference was held, and an agreement to resolve the alleged violations was reached pursuant to which the Company has agreed to pay a penalty of $220,000 to resolve the matter.
As previously disclosed in the Company’s Form 10-Q for the quarterly period ended September 30, 2018, the Company received a letter dated September 26, 2018 from the South Coast Air Quality Management District (“SCAQMD”) in California alleging excess emissions from non-compliant coatings and seeking a proposed penalty of approximately $1.5 million. Settlement discussions regarding this matter have been unsuccessful to date, and SCAQMD filed a civil Complaint against the Company on November 30, 2018 in the Superior Court of California seeking civil penalties, costs and injunctive relief including an initial demand of $30 million. The Company disputes the allegations in the Complaint and intends to vigorously defend this matter.
For information regarding environmental-related matters and other legal proceedings, see pages 28 and 30 of our 2018 Annual Report under the captions “Environmental-Related Liabilities” and “Litigation” of “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and Notes 1, 9, 10 and 14 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on pages 47, 62 through 63, 63 through 67 and 70, respectively, of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
ITEM 4.    MINE SAFETY DISCLOSURES
Not applicable.
EXECUTIVE OFFICERS OF THE REGISTRANT
The following is the name, age and present position of each of our executive officers and all persons chosen to become executive officers, as well as all prior positions held by each during the last five years. Executive officers are generally elected annually by the Board of Directors and hold office until their successors are elected and qualified or until their earlier death, resignation or removal.
 
Name
Age
Present Position
John G. Morikis
55
Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Director
Allen J. Mistysyn
50
Senior Vice President - Finance and Chief Financial Officer
Jane M. Cronin
51
Senior Vice President - Corporate Controller
Mary L. Garceau
46
Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary
Thomas P. Gilligan
58
Senior Vice President - Human Resources
Robert J. Wells
61
Senior Vice President - Corporate Communications and Public Affairs
Joel D. Baxter
58
President & General Manager, Global Supply Chain Division, Consumer Brands Group
Aaron M. Erter
45
President, Consumer Brands Group
Peter J. Ippolito
54
President, The Americas Group
David B. Sewell
50
President, Performance Coatings Group
Robert F. Lynch
58
President & General Manager, Retail - North America,
Consumer Brands Group


14



Mr. Morikis has served as Chairman since January 2017 and President and Chief Executive Officer since January 2016. Mr. Morikis served as President and Chief Operating Officer from October 2006 to January 2016. Mr. Morikis has served as a Director since October 2015 and has been employed with the Company since December 1984. Effective March 1, 2019, Mr. Morikis will serve as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.
Mr. Mistysyn has served as Senior Vice President - Finance and Chief Financial Officer since January 2017. Mr. Mistysyn served as Senior Vice President - Finance from October 2016 to January 2017, Senior Vice President - Corporate Controller from October 2014 to October 2016, and Vice President - Corporate Controller from May 2010 to October 2014. Mr. Mistysyn has been employed with the Company since June 1990.
Ms. Cronin has served as Senior Vice President - Corporate Controller since October 2016. Ms. Cronin served as Vice President - Corporate Audit and Loss Prevention from September 2013 to October 2016. Ms. Cronin has been employed with the Company since September 1989.
Ms. Garceau has served as Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary since August 2017. Ms. Garceau served as Vice President, Deputy General Counsel and Assistant Secretary from June 2017 to August 2017, Associate General Counsel and Assistant Secretary from April 2017 to June 2017, and Associate General Counsel from February 2014 to April 2017. Prior to joining the Company, Ms. Garceau was General Counsel of Thirty-One Gifts LLC from August 2011 to February 2014. Ms. Garceau has been employed with the Company since February 2014.
Mr. Gilligan has served as Senior Vice President - Human Resources since January 2016. Mr. Gilligan served as Senior Vice President, Human Resources, The Americas Group from August 2014 to January 2016 and Senior Vice President, Human Resources, Paint Stores Group from July 2000 to August 2014. Mr. Gilligan has been employed with the Company since October 1983.
Mr. Wells has served as Senior Vice President - Corporate Communications and Public Affairs since February 2009. Mr. Wells has been employed with the Company since May 1998.
Mr. Baxter has served as President & General Manager, Global Supply Chain Division, Consumer Brands Group (f/k/a Consumer Group) since September 2008. Mr. Baxter has been employed with the Company since September 1990.
Mr. Erter has served as President, Consumer Brands Group since August 2017. Mr. Erter served as President & General Manager, Consumer Division, Consumer Brands Group from June 2017 to August 2017. Prior to joining the Company in connection with the acquisition of The Valspar Corporation, Mr. Erter served as Senior Vice President of Valspar from December 2015 to June 2017 and Vice President and General Manager, North America of Valspar from November 2011 to December 2015. Mr. Erter has been employed with the Company since June 2017. Mr. Erter was named President, Performance Coatings Group effective March 1, 2019.
Mr. Ippolito has served as President, The Americas Group since January 2018. Mr. Ippolito served as President & General Manager, Mid Western Division, The Americas Group from November 2010 to January 2018. Mr. Ippolito has been employed with the Company since May 1986.
Mr. Sewell has served as President, Performance Coatings Group (f/k/a Global Finishes Group) since August 2014. Mr. Sewell served as President & General Manager, Product Finishes Division, Global Finishes Group from July 2012 to August 2014. Mr. Sewell has been employed with the Company since February 2007. Mr. Sewell was named President and Chief Operating Officer of the Company effective March 1, 2019.
Mr. Lynch has served as President & General Manager, Retail - North America, Consumer Brands Group since August 2017. Mr. Lynch served as Senior Vice President, Sales, Automotive Finishes Division, Global Finishes Group from August 2012 to July 2017. Mr. Lynch has been employed with the Company since October 2000. Mr. Lynch was named President, Consumer Brands Group effective March 1, 2019 and will become an executive officer at that time.




15


PART II
 
ITEM 5. MARKET FOR REGISTRANT’S COMMON EQUITY, RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS AND ISSUER PURCHASES OF EQUITY SECURITIES
Our common stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange and traded under the symbol SHW. The number of shareholders of record at January 31, 2019 was 6,219.
The performance graph set forth on page 16 of our 2018 Annual Report is incorporated herein by reference. The information with respect to securities authorized for issuance under the Company’s equity compensation plans is set forth under the caption “Equity Compensation Plan Information” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference.
Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities
The following table sets forth a summary of the Company’s purchases of common stock during the fourth quarter of 2018. 
Period
 
Total
Number of
Shares
Purchased
 
Average Price
Paid per
Share
 
Total Number
of Shares
Purchased as
Part of a
Publicly
Announced Plan
 
Maximum Number
of Shares
that May
Yet Be
Purchased Under
the Plan
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
October 1 – October 31
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Share repurchase program (1)
 
600,000

 
$
408.30

 
600,000

 
10,125,000

Employee transactions (2)
 
181

 
$
417.12

 
 
 
N/A

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
November 1 – November 30
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Employee transactions (2)
 
38

 
$
389.54

 
 
 
N/A

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
December 1 – December 31
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Employee transactions (2)
 
130

 
$
389.51

 
 
 
N/A

Total
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Share repurchase program (1)
 
600,000

 
$
408.30

 
600,000

 
10,125,000

Employee transactions (2)
 
349

 
$
403.83

 
 
 
N/A

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
(1) 
All shares are purchased through the Company’s publicly announced share repurchase program. There is no expiration date specified for the program. The Company had remaining authorization at December 31, 2018 to purchase 10,125,000 shares.
(2) 
All shares were delivered to satisfy the exercise price and/or tax withholding obligations by employees who exercised stock options or had shares of restricted stock vest.

16



ITEM 6. SELECTED FINANCIAL DATA
(millions of dollars, except per common share data)
 
 
 
2018
 
2017
 
2016
 
2015
 
2014
 
Operations
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Net sales
 
$
17,534

 
$
14,984

 
$
11,856

 
$
11,339

 
$
11,130

 
Net income from continuing operations
 
1,109

 
1,769

 
1,133

 
1,054

 
866

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Financial Position
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Total assets
 
$
19,134

 
$
19,900

 
$
6,753

 
$
5,779

 
$
5,699

 
Long-term debt
 
8,708

 
9,886

 
1,211

 
1,907

 
1,116

 
Ratio of earnings to fixed charges (1)
 
3.6x

 
4.5x

 
6.5x

 
9.1x

 
7.7x

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Per Common Share Data
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Net income from continuing operations — diluted (2)
 
11.67

 
18.64

 
11.99

 
11.15

 
8.77

 
Cash dividends
 
3.44

 
3.40

 
3.36

 
2.68

 
2.20

 
(1) 
For purposes of calculating the ratio of earnings to fixed charges, earnings represent income before income taxes plus fixed charges. Fixed charges consist of interest expense, net, including amortization of discount and financing costs and the portion of operating rental expense which management believes is representative of the interest component of rent expense. The following schedule includes the figures used to calculate the ratios:
 
 
2018
 
2017
 
2016
 
2015
 
2014
 
Income before income taxes
 
$
1,360

 
$
1,469

 
$
1,595

 
$
1,549

 
$
1,258

 
Fixed charges:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Interest expense, net
 
367

 
263

 
154

 
62

 
64

 
Interest component of rent expense
 
165

 
153

 
138

 
130

 
125

 
Total fixed charges
 
532

 
416

 
292

 
192

 
189

 
Earnings
 
$
1,892

 
$
1,885

 
$
1,887

 
$
1,741

 
$
1,447

 

(2) 
Presented under the treasury stock method.
ITEM 7. MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS
The information required by this item is set forth on pages 19 through 35 of our 2018 Annual Report under the caption “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” which is incorporated herein by reference.
ITEM 7A.    QUANTITATIVE AND QUALITATIVE DISCLOSURES ABOUT MARKET RISK
We are exposed to market risk associated with interest rates, foreign currency and commodity fluctuations. We occasionally utilize derivative instruments as part of our overall financial risk management policy, but do not use derivative instruments for speculative or trading purposes. The Company entered into foreign currency forward currency exchange contracts during 2018 to hedge against value changes in foreign currency. There were no material contracts outstanding at December 31, 2018. Foreign currency forward contracts are described in Note 14 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on page 71 of our 2018 Annual Report. We believe we may experience continuing losses from foreign currency fluctuations. However, we do not expect currency translation, transaction or hedging contract losses to have a material adverse effect on our financial condition, results of operations or cash flows. The interest rate lock agreements entered into in 2016 were settled during 2017. See Note 8 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on pages 61 through 62 of our 2018 Annual Report.

17


ITEM 8.    FINANCIAL STATEMENTS AND SUPPLEMENTARY DATA
Information required by this item is set forth on pages 38 through 77 of our 2018 Annual Report under the captions “Report of Management on the Consolidated Financial Statements,” “Report of the Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm on the Consolidated Financial Statements,” “Statements of Consolidated Income and Comprehensive Income,” “Consolidated Balance Sheets,” “Statements of Consolidated Cash Flows,” “Statements of Consolidated Shareholders’ Equity,” and “Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements,” which is incorporated herein by reference. Unaudited quarterly data is set forth in Note 17 of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements on page 74 of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
 
ITEM 9. CHANGES IN AND DISAGREEMENTS WITH ACCOUNTANTS ON ACCOUNTING AND FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE
None.
ITEM 9A.    CONTROLS AND PROCEDURES
Disclosure Controls and Procedures
As of the end of the period covered by this report, we carried out an evaluation, under the supervision and with the participation of our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer and our Senior Vice President – Finance and Chief Financial Officer, of the effectiveness of our disclosure controls and procedures pursuant to Rule 13a-15 and Rule 15d-15 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (“Exchange Act”). Based upon that evaluation, our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer and our Senior Vice President – Finance and Chief Financial Officer concluded that as of the end of the period covered by this report our disclosure controls and procedures were effective to ensure that information required to be disclosed by us in reports we file or submit under the Exchange Act is recorded, processed, summarized and reported within the time periods specified in Securities and Exchange Commission rules and forms, and accumulated and communicated to our management, including our Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer and our Senior Vice President – Finance and Chief Financial Officer, to allow timely decisions regarding required disclosure.
Internal Control Over Financial Reporting
The “Report of Management on Internal Control over Financial Reporting” is set forth on page 36 of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
The “Report of the Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm on Internal Control over Financial Reporting” is set forth on page 37 of our 2018 Annual Report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
There were no changes in our internal control over financial reporting identified in connection with the evaluation that occurred during the period covered by this report that have materially affected, or are reasonably likely to materially affect, our internal control over financial reporting.
ITEM 9B.    OTHER INFORMATION
None.

18


PART III
ITEM 10.    DIRECTORS, EXECUTIVE OFFICERS AND CORPORATE GOVERNANCE
Directors
The information regarding our directors and director nominees is set forth under the captions “Proposal 1 – Election of Directors” and “Experiences, Qualifications, Attributes and Skills of Director Nominees” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference.
There were no material changes to the procedures by which security holders may recommend nominees to our Board of Directors during 2018. Please refer to the information set forth under the caption “Board Meetings and Committees” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference.
Executive Officers
The information regarding our executive officers is set forth under the caption “Executive Officers of the Registrant” in Part I of this report, which is incorporated herein by reference.
Section 16(a) Beneficial Ownership Reporting Compliance
The information regarding compliance with Section 16 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 is set forth under the caption “Section 16(a) Beneficial Ownership Reporting Compliance” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference.
Audit Committee
The information regarding the Audit Committee of our Board of Directors and the information regarding audit committee financial experts are set forth under the caption “Board Meetings and Committees” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference.
Code of Ethics
We have adopted a Code of Conduct, which applies to all directors, officers and employees of Sherwin-Williams and our subsidiaries wherever located. Our Code of Conduct contains the general guidelines and principles for conducting Sherwin-Williams' business consistent with the highest standards of business ethics. Under our Code of Ethics for Senior Financial Management, our chief executive officer, chief financial officer and senior financial management are responsible for creating and maintaining a culture of high ethical standards and of commitment to compliance throughout our company to ensure the fair and timely reporting of Sherwin-Williams' financial results and condition. Senior financial management includes the controller, the treasurer, the principal financial/accounting personnel in our operating groups and divisions, and all other financial/accounting personnel within our corporate departments and operating groups and divisions with staff supervision responsibilities. Please refer to the information set forth under the caption “Corporate Governance – Code of Conduct” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference. Our Code of Conduct and Code of Ethics for Senior Financial Management are available in the “Corporate Governance” section on the “Investor Relations” page of our website at www.sherwin.com.
We intend to disclose on our website at www.sherwin.com any amendment to, or waiver from, a provision of our Code of Conduct or Code of Ethics for Senior Financial Management that applies to our directors and executive officers, including our principal executive officer, principal financial officer, principal accounting officer or controller, or any persons performing similar functions, and that is required to be publicly disclosed pursuant to the rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
ITEM 11.    EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION
The information required by this item is set forth under the captions “Compensation Committee Report,” “Compensation Risk Assessment,” “2018 Director Compensation Table” and “Director Compensation Program” in our Proxy Statement, and under the "Executive Compensation" section of our Proxy Statement commencing with the information under the caption “Compensation Discussion and Analysis (CD&A)” and continuing through the information under the caption “2018 CEO Pay Ratio,” which is incorporated herein by reference.

19


ITEM 12. SECURITY OWNERSHIP OF CERTAIN BENEFICIAL OWNERS AND MANAGEMENT AND RELATED STOCKHOLDER MATTERS
The information regarding security ownership of certain beneficial owners and management is set forth under the captions “Security Ownership of Management” and “Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference.
The information regarding securities authorized for issuance under the Company’s equity compensation plans is set forth under the caption “Equity Compensation Plan Information” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference. 
ITEM 13. CERTAIN RELATIONSHIPS AND RELATED TRANSACTIONS, AND DIRECTOR INDEPENDENCE
The information required by this item is set forth under the captions “Certain Relationships and Transactions with Related Persons” and “Independence of Directors” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference.
ITEM 14.    PRINCIPAL ACCOUNTANT FEES AND SERVICES
The information required by this item is set forth under the caption “Matters Relating to the Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm” in our Proxy Statement, which is incorporated herein by reference.

20


PART IV
ITEM 15.    EXHIBITS AND FINANCIAL STATEMENT SCHEDULES
(a)(1)
Financial Statements
The following consolidated financial statements of the Company included in our 2018 Annual Report are incorporated by reference in Item 8.
(i)
Report of Management on the Consolidated Financial Statements (page 38 of our 2018 Annual Report);
(ii)
Report of the Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm on the Consolidated Financial Statements (page 39 of our 2018 Annual Report);
(iii)
Statements of Consolidated Income and Comprehensive Income for the years ended December 31, 2018, 2017 and 2016 (page 40 and 41 of our 2018 Annual Report);
(iv)
Consolidated Balance Sheets at December 31, 2018, 2017 and 2016 (page 42 of our 2018 Annual Report);
(v)
Statements of Consolidated Cash Flows for the years ended December 31, 2018, 2017 and 2016 (page 43 of our 2018 Annual Report);
(vi)
Statements of Consolidated Shareholders’ Equity for the years ended December 31, 2018, 2017 and 2016 (page 44 of our 2018 Annual Report); and
(vii)
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements for the years ended December 31, 2018, 2017 and 2016 (pages 45 through 77 of our 2018 Annual Report).
(2) Financial Statement Schedule
Schedule II — Valuation and Qualifying Accounts and Reserves for the years ended December 31, 2018, 2017 and 2016 is set forth below. All other schedules for which provision is made in the applicable accounting regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission are not required under the related instructions or are inapplicable and therefore have been omitted.
Valuation and Qualifying Accounts and Reserves
(Schedule II)
Changes in the allowance for doubtful accounts were as follows: 
(thousands of dollars)
2018
 
2017
 
2016
Beginning balance
$
52,997

 
$
40,450

 
$
49,420

Bad debt expense
38,240

 
42,716

 
29,869

Uncollectible accounts written off, net of recoveries
(45,354
)
 
(30,169
)
 
(38,839
)
Ending balance
$
45,883

 
$
52,997

 
$
40,450


Changes in deferred tax asset valuation allowances were as follows:
(thousands of dollars)
2018
 
2017
 
2016
Beginning balance
$
44,101

 
$
17,292

 
$
12,595

Additions (deductions) (1)
10,660

 
(489
)
 
4,697

Acquired balances
18,782

 
27,298

 

Ending balance
$
73,543

 
$
44,101

 
$
17,292


(1) Additions (deductions) did not have a material impact on the Income Statement in 2018, 2017 or 2016.




21


(3) Exhibits
2.
*(a)

 
 
 
3.
(a)

 
 
 
 
(b)

 
 
 
4.
(a)

 
 
 
 
(b)

 
(c)

 
 
 
 
(d)

 
 
 
 
(e)

 
 
 
 
(f)

 
 
 
 
(g)


 
 
 
 
(h)

 
 
 
 
(i)

 
 
 
 
(j)

 
 
 

22


 
(k)

 
 
 
 
(l)

 
 
 
 
(m)
 
 
 
 
(n)
 
 
 
 
(o)
 
 
 
 
(p)
 
 
 
 
(q)
 
 
 
 
(r)
 
 
 
 
(s)
 
 
 
 
(t)
 
 
 
 
(u)
 
 
 
 
(v)
 
 
 
 
(w)
 
 
 
 
(x)

 
 
 
 
(y)
 
 
 

23


 
(z)
 
 
 
 
(aa)
 
 
 
 
(bb)
 
 
 
 
(cc)

 
 
 
 
(dd)

 
 
 
 
(ee)

 
 
 
 
(ff)
 
 
 
 
(gg)
 
 
 
 
(hh)
 
 
 
 
(ii)
 
 
 
 
(jj)
 
 
 
 
(kk)

 
 
 
 
(ll)
 
 
 
10.
**(a)
 
 
 

24


 
**(b)
 
 
 
 
**(c)

 
 
 
 
**(d)
 
 
 
 
**(e)

 
 
 
 
**(f)

 
 
 
 
**(g)
 
 
 
 
**(h)
 
 
 
 
**(i)

 
 
 
 
**(j)

 
 
 
 
**(k)

 
 
 
 
**(l)
 
 
 
 
**(m)
The Sherwin-Williams Company Executive Disability Income Plan filed as Exhibit 10(g) to the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 1991 (SEC File Number 001-04851), and incorporated herein by reference.
 
 
 
 
**(n)
 
 
 
 
**(o)
 
 
 
 
**(p)
 
 
 
 
**(q)
 
 
 
 
**(r)
 
 
 

25


 
**(s)
 
 
 
 
**(t)
 
 
 
 
**(u)
 
 
 
 
**(v)
 
 
 
 
**(w)
 
 
 
 
**(x)
 
 
 
 
**(y)
 
 
 
 
**(z)
 
 
 
 
**(aa)
 
 
 
 
**(bb)
 
 
 
 
**(cc)
 
 
 
 
**(dd)
 
 
 
 
**(ee)
 
 
 
 
**(ff)
 
 
 
13.
 
 
 
 
18.
 
 
 
 
21.
 
 
 
 
23.
 
 
 
 
24.
(a)
 
 
 
 
(b)
 
 
 
31.
(a)
 
 
 
 
(b)
 
 
 

26


32.
(a)
 
 
 
 
(b)
 
 
 
101.INS
XBRL Instance Document
 
 
 
101.SCH
XBRL Taxonomy Extension Schema Document
 
 
 
101.PRE
XBRL Taxonomy Extension Presentation Linkbase Document
 
 
 
101.CAL
XBRL Taxonomy Extension Calculation Linkbase Document
 
 
 
101.LAB
XBRL Taxonomy Extension Label Linkbase Document
 
 
 
101.DEF
XBRL Taxonomy Extension Definition Linkbase Document

 
*
Certain exhibits and schedules have been omitted and the Company agrees to furnish supplementally to the Securities and Exchange Commission a copy of any omitted exhibits and schedules upon request.
 
**
Management contract or compensatory plan or arrangement.





ITEM 16. FORM 10-K SUMMARY
None.

27


SIGNATURES
Pursuant to the requirements of Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the Company has duly caused this report to be signed on its behalf by the undersigned, thereunto duly authorized, on February 22, 2019.
 
THE SHERWIN-WILLIAMS COMPANY
 
 
By:
/S/
MARY L. GARCEAU
 
 
Mary L. Garceau, Secretary
Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, this report has been signed below by the following persons on behalf of the registrant and in the capacities indicated on February 22, 2019.
* JOHN G. MORIKIS
 
Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Director
(Principal Executive Officer)
    John G. Morikis
 
* ALLEN J. MISTYSYN
 
Senior Vice President – Finance and Chief Financial Officer (Principal Financial Officer)
    Allen J. Mistysyn
 
* JANE M. CRONIN
 
Senior Vice President – Corporate Controller
(Principal Accounting Officer)
    Jane M. Cronin
 
* ARTHUR F. ANTON
 
Director
    Arthur F. Anton
 
 
* DAVID F. HODNIK
 
Director
    David F. Hodnik
 
 
* RICHARD J. KRAMER
 
Director
    Richard J. Kramer
 
* SUSAN J. KROPF
 
Director
    Susan J. Kropf
 
 
* CHRISTINE A. POON
 
Director
    Christine A. Poon
 
* JOHN M. STROPKI
 
Director
    John M. Stropki
 
* MICHAEL H. THAMAN
 
Director
    Michael H. Thaman
 
* MATTHEW THORNTON III
 
Director
    Matthew Thornton III
 
* STEVEN H. WUNNING
 
Director
    Steven H. Wunning
 

*
The undersigned, by signing her name hereto, does sign this report on behalf of the designated officers and directors of the Company pursuant to powers of attorney executed on behalf of each such officer and director and filed as an exhibit to this report.
By:
/S/
MARY L. GARCEAU

  
February 22, 2019
 
 
Mary L. Garceau, Attorney-in-fact
  
 

28