Industry Media - Features

When Vancouver International Airport (YVR) opened in 1931, traffic was impressive for the time with 1,072 passengers travelling through the airport’s gates.

With Canadian transportation being at the pinnacle of development, CIO recently had the opportunity to connect with Phil Verster, CEO of Metrolinx, to discuss how Metrolinx is moving people forward.

For this month’s Women in Business cover story, we spoke with Ratana Stephens, Co-CEO and Co-founder of the very prominent and largest organic breakfast foods company (in North America) Nature’s Path.

Firesteel Resources, a Canadian gold mining company with properties in Finland and northwestern British Columbia

In Woodstock, Ontario, there is a company that has set the standard for longevity and tenacity in Canadian manufacturing, and this year, Canada Stampings turns 120 years old—not a small feat for a Canadian manufacturer.

Founded in 1827, the University of Toronto has evolved into one of the world’s leading educational institutions. Over 500,000 graduates have gone out into the world from U of T to have impacts in every industry imaginable.

In 1961, De Beers began its first exploration program in Canada, through an Anglo American Corporation subsidiary known as Hard Metals Canada Ltd. Today, more than 50 years later, De Beers Canada has been operating sustainable diamond mines and providing local economic growth to many Canadian communities.

Mackenzie Investments began in 1967, with one person managing investments for one client. Times were different in Canada as was the investment landscape, not to mention the economy.

The beginnings of CRT Construction started with Roger Turgeon, a skilled manual worker who had many trades under his belt, and wanted to start his own construction business.

The year 1929 was one of change, where technological advancements in all industries and sectors, and in the way people lived, were rapidly evolving.

Between 1994 and 1996, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) ceased building new urban native housing and devolved social housing to the provinces.

CIO recently had the opportunity to connect with Deborah Poole, general manager,, to talk about how the company has grown in Canada and what the strategy is for future development.

It’s part of a wave of a new fitness boutique revolution (but without the boutique costs and an incredibly unique use of technology): Orangetheory® Fitness is taking Canada by storm, and with it, transforming people’s lives. The Orangetheory model is a scientifically designed, one-of-a-kind, group personal training workout broken into intervals of cardiovascular and strength training.

In collaboration with the private and non-profit sectors, provincial health authorities and ministries, BC Housing is an organization providing a range of housing to communities in need of affordable housing in British Columbia

TransLink manages buses, rapid transit, commuter rail, SeaBus, the major road network (approximately 600 km) and five bridges in Metro Vancouver, and is Metro Vancouver's regional transportation authority. TransLink is responsible for regional transit, cycling and commuting options as well as Intelligent Transportation System programs and services are delivered through our operating companies.

There aren’t many technology companies in the world that can claim 100 years in business, much less achieve global success and household recognition like IBM has.

Imperial Oil has been in business in Canada for more than 135 years, through Canada’s market fluctuations and many societal shifts. But as Canada’s second largest oil and gas producer, Imperial Oil is also the country’s most entrenched and has shown the industry that being innovative and flexible equates to market resilience.

In 1988, a company started that would stand the test of time in the ever-changing real estate market of Southern Ontario: Acorn Homes was created as a part of a fully integrated family-owned real estate group of companies with an operating history exceeding 60 years.

In 1965, 17-year-old Fred DeLuca dreamt of being a doctor. In order to pay for his education, he knew he would need to work. This led the entrepreneurial DeLuca to open a sandwich shop, with a loan of $1,000 from a friend.

One of Canada’s most popular brands, Canada Dry, is a staple for many Canadian households. Whether an added ingredient to a punch or enjoyed on its own, Canada Dry has remained the leader in its category for over a century, offering drinkers unparalleled flavor and quality.

In one of Canada’s most beautiful cities, the Port of Halifax is a regional economic engine. The Port generates more than 12,400 jobs and contributes over $1.7 billion in economic impact.

The Port of Trois-Rivières has been in operation for 135, and in that time, has seen an annual traffic of 3.3 million metric tons. The Port welcomes around 250 ships each year, and handles a variety of products from alumina to grain, as well as containers, wind towers, and forest products.

With about $41 billion in goods moving through the Port of Montreal every year, it is the second-largest container port in Canada.

With about 2,600 Canadian-based employees and a global presence, Sunwing has become the country’s preeminent vacation provider, offering superior service and unparalleled vacation options to customers across Canada.

With a strong vision behind its operations, the Ottawa Hospital (TOH) provides patients “with the world-class care, exceptional service and compassion we would want for our loved ones.” The hospital, which has roots dating back to the mid-1800s, sees more patients than any other academic health sciences centre in Canada.

In 1986, innovative entrepreneur Dan Daniels founded a company that would ultimately be one of the very first to provide reusable sharps containers to healthcare facilities. Fast forward to 1996, and Daniels' team of engineers and scientists began an R&D project to address the growing need for a safer system for disposing of sharps.

Recently, CIO had the opportunity to speak with Kevan Gorrie, President and Chief Executive Officer of Pure Industrial REIT, one of Canada’s most successful REITs. PIRET is an unincorporated, open-ended investment trust that owns and operates a diversified portfolio of income-producing industrial properties markets in Canada and the United States, internally managed by a top management team.

In 1861, the privately-owned Toronto Street Railway Company was granted a 30-year franchise by the City of Toronto to operate public transit. And so, horse-drawn streetcars ran transit in the summer months and horse-drawn sleighs transported riders in the winter.

With a population of 2.79 million people, and a growing reputation as one of the best places to live in the world, Toronto has become a tourist magnet and an incredible place to live and work for local residents.

As Canada’s largest private sector union with over 310,000 members, Unifor represents every major sector of the economy and has an aggressive approach to representing members. Unifor is modern, evolved, and committed to looking at new ways to develop the role of the union to meet needs of workers and employers.

In 1955, Ray Kroc opened the first McDonald’s restaurant in Des Plaines, Illinois, and in doing so launched a legendary brand that is now a global leader in fast food. McDonald’s went public in 1965 with 700 restaurants, and franchises boomed. It was in 1967 that a historic milestone was reached in McDonald’s history: the first Canadian restaurant opened its doors in Richmond, British Columbia.

In an exclusive with CIO, Kathy Gregory talked about how it takes guts to grow a company in a time of economic uncertainty. Gregory, founder and President, launched Paradigm in the mid 2000s and since has built a team of over 300 people, and has become a leader in the Canadian mortgage servicing industry.

Visualize a planet in which humans work side by side with robots. A place where robots do all the strenuous repetitive work freeing humans to use their brains and manual dexterity to focus more on intricate jobs.

In Canada, effective waste management services are critical. With a growing population and a national responsibility to sustainable living, Canadians are becoming more and more aware of the fragile nature of the environment—and corporations are taking up the charge to be more proactive with environmental protection.

The Western Canadian real estate market has changed significantly in the last 20 years. With the market’s current fluctuation, investors are increasingly careful of where to spend capital.


Like many small business success stories, the story of 1-800-GOT-JUNK started out of a flash idea. In 1989, Brian Scudamore saw an old junk truck and was pondering how he would pay for his post-high school education. It was then that he realized he wanted to try a business in junk removal. He bought a truck for $700 and started The Rubbish Boys that very week.

For more than 150 years, Sherwin-Williams has been a leader in paint and coating development, matching uncompromising quality to exceptional customer service.

It’s a remarkable story, one of hard work and great minds coming together to create one of the most innovative and entrepreneurial Canadian companies to ever exist.

It is Canada’s largest airport, and busiest. Connecting domestic and international travellers, businesses and goods, Toronto Pearson International Airport is run by a team of experts: experts in flight, operations experts, experts in travel, and experts in customer service.

With a legacy of quality underpinning its success, RMS Group is helping to build Western Canada’s future: operating as a fully integrated real estate development company based in Edmonton, Alberta that specializes in large multi-family dwellings and build to suit, and sale/lease back strategies.

It is one of the most prolific business stories in the country that you probably don’t know about: Colliers International, a Canadian real estate giant, has a presence in 68 countries but has always kept a relatively low-profile.

Jonathan and Drew Scott, co-hosts of HGTV’s Property Brothers, Brother vs. Brother, and Property Brothers at Home (which are aired in over 150 countries) may have only become household names in recent years, but don’t be fooled into thinking they’ve had “overnight success”—their incredible achievements are two decades in the making.

In 1998, Ken LeBlanc had an idea to put power back into property sellers’ hands. His thought: what if people who wanted to sell privately had a community and support services to do so? And so, was born. Twenty years later, Property Guys serves over 600 communities across Canada via more than 100 franchisees.

This month, CIO had the opportunity to speak with one of the country’s most hard-working homebuilders: Bonneville Homes. You may have seen their gorgeous homes designs in a recent commercial, or come across their creative spaces in a neighbourhood near you. One thing is for sure, this family business is using cutting-edge construction techniques to build beautiful properties for new and experienced homeowners.

It is a landmark and a destination, a travel hub and an urban retail centre: Union Station, in the heart of Toronto’s downtown, is Canada’s busiest transport facility and is currently undergoing one of the biggest overhauls in Canadian history of its kind.

Since 1934, Canadian Curtis Refrigeration has been supplying high quality products for savvy customers—always using the latest technology to improve design processes. The company has been in business for over 80 years for good reason: customer service is number 1 and the company has a reputation for their “superlative design and construction of Walk-In Cooler and Freezer rooms and custom Reach-In products.”

Diana Olsen has a penchant for great coffee. This passion led her to be one of Canada’s most innovative food entrepreneurs—but it wasn’t a simple path to success. Olsen tried her hand at many different crafts and interests before landing on coffee, and a stint in France provided the inspiration to start Balzac’s Coffee Roasters (named after Honoré de Balzac, a celebrated French novelist).

With Ontario’s bursting real estate market offering plenty of opportunities for home builders, one company stands out with a unique perspective and approach to development: Great Gulf Group is redefining what it means to build Canadian communities.

BGIS (formerly Brookfield Global Integrated Solutions) has spent more than 20 years developing a full range of unparalleled consulting, management and delivery services for corporate occupiers of real estate. The company is part of Brookfield Business Partners (a listed partnership that includes industrial and business services companies).

In Saskatoon, the market is evolving. Just a few years ago, it was almost impossible to avoid new developments springing up everywhere in the Saskatoon region. Now, as the Canadian real estate market changes, so too do companies building in the region.

Time, quality and money: these are the three biggest elements companies consider when they are looking at a logistics partner. Luckily for Canadian businesses, one of the best transport companies anywhere operates on home soil, serving clients all over the country—that company is Spady Transport.

Westbank First Nation (WFN) is a First Nations community, located in the Okanagan region of BC that reached Self-Governance status just over a decade ago. There are approximately 814 Members of the WFN Nation with nearly half living on WFN lands alongside approximately 10,000 non‐member residents.

If you are Kelsey Ramsden, President of Belvedere Place Contracting, you do not succeed and then simply rest on your laurels. No, the woman behind BPC is continuing to diversify the business that has helped lead her to become Canada’s #1 Top Woman Entrepreneur by Profit Magazine two years in a row.

On the cusp of a 20th anniversary, one real estate developer in Canada is setting the bar for ethics and values in the marketplace: Aspen Properties is creating a legacy of investment success, one project at a time.

In a defining transaction in June 2016, the British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (bcIMC) launched QuadReal: a “new company with deep roots.” With $123.6 billion of managed net assets, bcIMC is one of the country’s largest institutional investors within the global capital markets.

For this month’s Aboriginal Business Series, CIO is pleased to introduce FHQ Developments. CIO was able to connect with Thomas Benjoe, President/CEO of FHQ who spoke about progress, the future, and partnerships.

Owned by a unified 22 First Nation communities, Wataynikaneyap Power is a licenced transmission company committed to connecting remote First Nation communities currently serviced by diesel generation in Northwest Ontario.

As the largest private sector union in North America, the United Steelworkers union (USW) has a profound responsibility: to represent the interests of more than 225,000 workers of all origins and in all industries in Canada, and more than 800,000 in the continent.

In Southern Ontario, companies in construction and development have risen and fallen over the years: those surviving often are companies offering something a little bit extra to the market.

Pizza Pizza, Canada’s most famous pizza chain, turns 50 this year. And so too does the legacy of quality, service and the “hot and fresh” guarantee that the brand is known for.


With global markets continuing to shift and political turmoil leading headlines in 2016, it may have been a difficult year to focus on the great news in Canadian business. However, one company continues to thrive and grow despite ups and downs in the North American economic landscape.

blue mountain

There is something magical about Blue Mountain. Regardless of season, weather or time of day, the Mountain provides a beautiful backdrop for visitors of all ages who come to ski, snowboard, and play.


In the world of business, finding talent is a very costly and challenging endeavour. Being able to source the right people to staff an enterprise is not something that companies can take lightly, and that’s where Eagle Professional Resources comes in.


Eveline Charles is the founder and CEO of EvelineCharles Salons and Spas, Beauty MD Academy, and is one of Canada’s most recognized names in salon and spa industry. Her enterprise has grown from a privately owned business to a multi-million dollar operation.


Founded in 1908 in Strasbourg, France, SOPREMA is an international manufacturer of innovative products for waterproofing, insulation, and soundproofing, and vegetated solutions for the roofing, building envelope and civil engineering sectors.


With a long list of accolades and awards behind the Dominion Lending Centres (DLC) name, you might not at first believe that the company is just a 10-year old enterprise. Founded in 2006 by Gary Mauris and Chris Kayat, DLC is now Canada’s top mortgage company and the number one originator of mortgages in the country


The New Brunswick Liquor Corporation (ANBL, or NB Liquor), is a provincially owned corporation heading up the purchase, import, distribution and retail activity for New Brunswick. Started in 1976, the organization was created from legislation in the separation of the sales of liquor in the province and licensing/control functions.


Building in Canada’s North: it takes a lot of planning and a lot of tenacity, perhaps a little more than in other parts of the country. This is why NGC Builders, based in the Yukon, has thrived, because the company has built a reputation on delivering the best construction projects in the harshest environments and in the most difficult conditions.


In August, Canadian Industry had the distinct pleasure of speaking with François Laporte, President of Teamsters Canada, to reflect on a very special milestone: the 40th anniversary of the trade union. Teamsters Canada is truly a remarkable organization, representing the lives and livelihoods of over 120,000 members in transportation, production, and services and hospitality industries.

cn tower

It makes the Toronto skyline something to behold: Canada’s CN Tower has been a truly iconic landmark for an official 40 years, and CIO is pleased to present an in-depth look at its history, major milestones, and planned future strategy for programming with the Director of Sales, Marketing and Communications Lisa Tompkins.


Owned by the province of Ontario, Infrastructure Ontario (IO) is a corporation dedicated to serving the needs of Ontarians through building and development, sustaining communities and the future.


In the wake of the company’s 70th anniversary, CIO was able to connect with Ramsden Industries, a foundry based in London, Ontario with a legacy of excellence behind it.


In the heart of the southernmost point in Ontario is Walpole Island, on the border between Ontario and Michigan. The Island is about an hour from Windsor and an hour from Detroit, and houses the Walpole Island First Nation—unceded territory inhabited by the Ojibwe, Potawatomi, and Odawa members of WIFN.


Praztek Construction, based in Timmins, is a company on the rise. Owned and operated by Pete Beaucage Jr., Praztek was created in 2003 to fill the Timmins community’s local needs as a residential and commercial builder. The Beaucage name is a legacy in Northern Ontario—Pete’s father and grandfather worked in construction for almost 50 years.


They make the industry’s hardest working drills, and have delivered services to companies operating in the most difficult environments on the planet: Hy-Tech Drilling, out of Smithers, BC, is leading the charge in diamond drilling.


"Elsipogtog" or "L'sipuktuk" means "River of Fire". The Elsipogtog First Nation (EFN) is a Mi'kmaq First Nations band in Weldford Parish, New Brunswick, which was formerly known as the Big Cove Band. The band’s history dates back to 1761, when Chief Michael Augustine signed the Peace and Friendship Treaty with the British in 1761, on behalf of the Richibucto Tribe of Mi'kmaq.


In the corporate world, a mission statement guides a company and provides the necessary direction and vision an enterprise needs to develop its culture. For an organization like the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (Canada), a mission statement is more than that.


In recent years, increasing awareness of healthy eating has changed the way Canadians see food. From snacking, to dining out, to the consumption of fast food, the way people eat is shifting. In this month’s Famous Canadian Brands series, CIO looks at Topper’s Pizza, a family business that has tapped into Canadians’ cravings for a better pizza experience.


Based in Brantford, Ontario, Koolatron is a manufacturer one step ahead of the competition. The company was founded in 1983 and in the last 30 years has developed into one of the most innovative creators of niche products in Canada.


Created almost 70 years ago, ABCO Industries is a company destined to be part of the eastern Canadian business landscape for many years to come. Occupying the site of Camp Norway, a training facility built during WWII, ABCO has a presence in Nova Scotia that is founded on history and innovation.

When it comes to adapting to a shifting auto sector, AWC Company has done it right over the last four decades: springing into action when a customer’s needs dictate, and being available to turn on a dime when the market changes.


They call themselves pioneers—and the company, Freshco, is certainly leading in the marketplace when it comes to innovation in the maintenance and reconstruction industry. Freshco is led by entrepreneur and visionary Mandy Rennehan, and has three divisions: maintenance, projects and reconstruction. The company offers customized solutions to its clients across Canada and in the U.S. and has a reputation for quality and unparalleled customer service.

baby gourmet

A decade ago, Jennifer Carlson discovered that she had a passion for making her own baby food, balking at the jars of strained vegetable puree she picked up for her then 6-month old daughter. Knowing she could do better for her kids, she came up with a business idea: to make the highest quality organic baby food possible and bring it to the Canadian market.


Fifty years ago, Riverside Brass came up in the Canadian marketplace to serve customers needing a quality-driven foundry with competitive pricing. The company is conveniently located in New Hamburg, Ontario, with the ability to serve markets all over the continent.


Every business has a story. More often than not, that story involves a self-starter, determined to make a life through commerce, and develop an enterprise that can bring economic prosperity to others.


Like many Canadian corporations, TOA Canada has a history that is rooted in innovation. However, what makes the company unique is its foundation: TOA Canada is the domestic subsidiary of legendary commercial audio, professional sound, and security product manufacturer TOA Corporation, a company that was founded in Kobe Japan in 1934.


With testimonials like “you have gone above and beyond and it is so appreciated” gracing the company’s website, it’s no wonder that Alpha Poly has lasted more than 25 years. Starting with two employees in a 3,000 square foot facility, the company has grown into an industry leader in Canada, providing customers with a large array of custom poly-packaging solutions.


BESTECH will be the lead engineering firm on the project, completing the land development, civil, structural, mechanical, instrumentation, and process control requirements.  In conjunction with their partner Praetorian, BESTECH will also manage the construction, procurement, contracts, schedules and cost controls.


With beginnings that span back to 1923, Sharp’s Audio Visual is a remarkable business story: a company that has managed to “keep up with the times” even though technology looks nothing like it did when Sharp’s was created.


In 2016, Canada’s economic landscape has been challenging for many businesses. However, on the cusp of a 40th anniversary, one manufacturer is continuing to set the bar for customer service, and proving that ambition and creativity can weather any economic storm.


Based in Woodstock, Ontario, there is a company that has set the standard for longevity and tenacity in Canadian manufacturing. Canada Stampings is more than 115 years old, and is still going strong. A family-run business, Canada Stampings supplies the marketplace with quality products and service unparalleled by competitors.


In this month’s Aboriginal Business Series, CIO had the opportunity to look at the successes and potential for economic development with the Okanagan Indian Band, located in British Columbia.


In the past couple of years, natural resources sectors have come under the spotlight in media—as Canada’s energy industry is in distress and global mining jurisdictions face hard times. However, one company is progressing in leaps and bounds: Brazilian mining giant Vale has reason to celebrate this year, as 2016 marks 100 years of operations in Canada for the mineral producer.


Founded 25 years ago, Angstrom Engineering (based in Kitchener, Ontario) has evolved into an international enterprise—providing high-quality machines to savvy customers. The company’s PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition), and CVD (Chemical Vapor Deposition) systems are developed by an experienced engineering team and Angstrom has an excellent capacity to manufacture products that allow “researchers and development teams in world-class labs across the globe to innovate new technologies.”


When CIO last spoke with AVL Group of Companies in 2013, the company was on the up-and-up, bringing in lots of new business and developing new and innovative services and products for valued customers across the country.


This month, CIO had the pleasure of speaking with Isabelle Graveline, President and CEO of Kilmarnock Enterprise, a family-owned and operated business that started in 1996. Marking the 20th anniversary of the company, 2016 is also a year of incredible growth and promise for Kilmarnock, which was recently recognized on the Profit500 for strong growth in 2015.


In our latest look at Canadian infrastructure projects that directly benefit and impact Aboriginal communities, CIO had the opportunity to speak exclusively with BC Hydro to discuss developing projects and partnerships to date.


A decade ago, Mittal Steel and Arcelor merged to create the powerhouse ArcelorMittal. A lot has happened in 10 years. Celebrating a milestone decade in business as the union of two very successful companies, ArcelorMittal has seen unprecedented growth since its inception.


Since Colony Buildings started business in 1985, the company has built its reputation on quality and excellence of service, caring for each individual project with the utmost dedication.


The Karbon slogan is “there are no limits.” With a 20 year history of innovation and a solid corporate foundation started by the Schure family in 1982, it is no wonder that this is the legacy that the team at Karbon Performance Sports Apparel has created.


Alpine Aerotech LP, based in British Columbia, is a “Platinum Certified” Bell Helicopter Textron approved Customer Service Facility. The company considers itself a leading edge provider of comprehensive worldwide helicopter support and aircraft maintenance services from its Maintenance and Manufacturing Centre located in Kelowna.


In the mid-80s, Patrick Coulter and Bob Shaw started a company that would set the bar for the commercialfixture business. At the time, Coulter saw that there was a market need for the types of products Shaw could offer, from his experience in housing.


Ro-Matt International Inc. is truly a Canadian company with a history. As a member of a family-owned group of companies that began within Romeo Machine Shop and Manufacturing Ltd, Ro-Matt is part of a legacy of excellence in engineering, fabrication and manufacturing.


The Keeyask hydroelectric generating station on Gull Rapids in the Nelson River is a 695-megawatt project, being developed in northern Manitoba. The development of this project is a joint effort between Manitoba Hydro and four Manitoba First Nations: Tataskweyak, York Factory, Fox Lake and War Lake. Together, they for the Keeyask Hydropower Limited Partnership (KHLP).


Listuguj, a vibrant Mi’gmaw community, is located in the southwestern part of the Gaspé Peninsula in Quebec. Surrounded by the Appalachian Mountains, Listuguj has a population of approximately 3,813, about 2,074 Mi’gmaq people live in the community and 1,739 of members live off reserve.


Located in the heart of the oil sands, Sunset Recycle & Sales is Northern Alberta’s largest recycler. The company is a 100 per cent Aboriginally-owned business and has been around for over 25 years, proudly remaining one of the most well-respected recycling businesses in Alberta.


As one of the ten largest First Nation communities in Canada, Wikwemikong Unceded Indian Reserve has a lengthy heritage and history that was originally founded on the amalgamation of three tribal nations; Odawa, Pottawottomie and Ojibway.


The Ermineskin Cree Nation in central Alberta is one member of the Four Nations of Maskawacis. The Nation has a land base of approximately 25,000 acres and the Ermineskin Reserve was established in 1885. The Nation belongs to the Treaty Six Group of Indian Tribes in Western Canada.


With its proximity to industry in Alberta, Fort McKay First Nation has been at the epicentre of industrial activity for many decades. The community (over 800 members strong) has been able to take advantage of economic opportunities stemming from forestry, oil sands and the pipeline industries in Alberta, and has reaped the benefits of positive industrial partnerships along the way—while still preserving cultural values and practices.


For over 60 years, North American Steel Equipment has been manufacturing steel storage equipment in Canada such as pallet racking and heavy duty shelving for customers across North America. However, the company’s brand has continued growing under the radar—until now.


Founded 100 years ago, HH Angus is one of Canada’s largest private engineering firms, surviving and thriving through market ups and downs because of a legacy of superior engineering design and innovative building services.


Started as an entrepreneurial effort 1995, Promation Engineering is a Canadian manufacturing success story. Privately-owned, Promation was founded by Mark Zimny and has grown into a leading designer and manufacturer of high quality tooling, automation and robotic systems for the nuclear and automotive industries. 


For this month’s tech series, CIO had the privilege of interviewing three innovators from Ottawa’s Northern Micro: Herman Yeh, President and Founder, Gilles Comtois, Senior Director of Product Management, and Richard Perkins, Senior Director of Production and Corporate Quality.


To kick off CIO’s annual manufacturing edition, we had the pleasure of interviewing the world’s most innovative manufacturer of trains and planes: Bombardier. The company’s Canadian operations have changed the way companies think about manufacturing, taking ingenuity to the next level and influencing manufacturing best practices across Canada and around the world.


When speaking with Leigh Coulter and Chrissy Guthoerl of GGS Structures Inc., it’s clear that the Southern Ontario company has its business strategy pointed in the right direction. “For 30 years we have been separating ourselves from the competition in Canada by creating buildings in our niche that are better and stronger,” Coulter says.


One of the most prolific non-profit Aboriginal organizations in Canada is the Northeastern Alberta Aboriginal Business Association (NAABA). Representing over one hundred Aboriginal Businesses in northeastern Alberta, NAABA is “committed to enhancing and creating an environment, which promotes businesses, jobs, and training for the betterment of all Aboriginal people in the region.”


In a time when communications technology was just starting to boom, a company in Ontario got into the market with a grand vision: to take on the major telecommunications players in Canada and develop IT and tech services for rural customers.


With over 300 locations across the country, Discount Car and Truck Rentals truly has Canada’s auto rental market covered. Started by Herb and Rhoda Singer in 1980, the Canadian leader in auto rentals is celebrating 35 years with a nod to their legacy of service and satisfaction—discussing success with CIO this month.


As one of Canada’s largest aboriginally owned providers of private fire, medical and occupational health services, Wapose Emergency Services is reaching new heights—celebrating 10 years in business in 2015.


Saskatchewan has been an epitome of growth in the last decade, with much credit being given  to the businesses that provide economic stability in the province, and it’s Premier Brad Wall. With Saskatchewan’s plentiful natural resources and energy production, it has been the birthplace of advanced manufacturing and energy technology, entrepreneurial endeavours, and unprecedented international attention when it comes to investment.

Saddle Lake

The Saddle Lake Cree Nation in Alberta is one founded on strength. The Saddle Lake Cree people believe that the foundation of progress stems from the retention of lands, culture and language.  The Nation focuses on developing youth to become good leaders, and makes economic development a priority so that members of Saddle Lake will be healthy and independent individuals.


L. Chabot Enterprises has roots that date back to 1965, when Lucien Chabot started out as an owner-operator in Winnipeg with a single truck working on construction projects. With determination, hard work and the support of his family, he built up his business.


They’re calling it a “Fanniversary”: DQ Canada celebrates 75 years in 2015, and franchisees across the country are celebrating. As a matter of fact, on June 22nd, global franchises held a mass anniversary cake-cutting at 8pm, much to the delight of DQ fans everywhere.


Speaking with Ben Neaves, President of Climate Technical Gear in Nova Scotia, is like digging into a little piece of history. Neaves, who took over the family business in 2014, recently talked to CIO about the monumental culture shift and new era of manufacturing and development the company is going through since its rebranding to Climate Technical Gear.


In 1970, Maroun Hage started Hage Enterprises Limited after arriving in Canada from Lebanon just five years before.  Hage was an entrepreneur at heart and first opened the Fancy Pastry Shop on Agricola Street in Halifax, working to support his young family and enjoying the bakery business.


It is the veritable Canadian real estate investment success story: the Skyline Group of Companies, founded in Guelph, ON by a group of tenacious entrepreneurs in 1999, was recently featured on the 2014 PROFIT 500, having reached unprecedented growth. The company’s three Co-Founders started owning and managing rental properties in 1991.


Westbank First Nation (WFN) is a First Nations community, located in the Okanagan region of BC, that reached Self-Governance status just ten years ago. But what the people of WFN have achieved as an economic entity in the last few decades is remarkable.


Since it was founded in 2001, Gateway Trailer Repairs has been an ever-evolving business. The company has truly transformed its industry with a business characteristic not generally associated with the industrial maintenance sector.


CIO recently had the opportunity to connect with NR Motors, a recreational vehicle dealer in Prince George, BC. This is what the NR Motors team had to say about their history, success, and future plans.


It is the world’s leading steel and mining company, and it is the economic foundation of many Canadian communities: in 2015 ArcelorMittal is setting the stage for responsible corporate development in Canada. The company is taking steps to put its people first and contribute to local economic growth.


Hunter Wire Products Ltd. (part of the larger Hunter Group) has been serving Winnipeg and Canadian customers since 1945. This means that the company has not only survived, but thrived and become part of the fabric of the Winnipeg community.


Canadians are a passionate people, especially when it comes to their favourite brands, and some products in Canada can stand the test of time, no matter the new ones that are introduced. Take for instance, Crown Royal whisky. Distilled, packaged, and sold for 75 years in Canada, Crown Royal is Canada’s whisky brand. Few whiskies have come close to the iconic sipper in quality or popularity.


This year, Toyota Canada celebrates an important milestone: its 50th anniversary. In 1964 Toyota granted a distributorship agreement to Canadian Motor Industries, Ltd. (CMI), which later became Toyota Canada Inc.—and the rest, as they say, is history.


Eskasoni First Nation is nestled alongside the picturesque Bras d'Or Lake in Eastern Cape Breton Island, and is the largest Mi'kmaq community in the world. The community has been growing its infrastructure and industry opportunities in order to create a sustainable future for its members, and CIO had the opportunity to speak with Tracy Menge and Steve Parsons (both in corporate development) to discuss that future.


Headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, is a dynamic food company that has changed with the times—and the demands of a growing customer base. TWI Foods started in 1997 in a very small facility, less than 5,000 square feet. The company was started by Ali Kizilbash, a chemical engineer by training.


Recently recognized on the Profit 500, Karwood Contracting has had much to celebrate in 2014: a 15th anniversary, steady growth, and an entrepreneurial company culture. CIO caught up with President Greg Hussey, and industry leader in Newfoundland construction, to talk about Karwood’s success and future plans.


In Canada, Henry Technologies has been manufacturing in Canada as Chil-Con since February 1967. The company has shifted and grown from being a manufacturer of chillers and condensers and is now a world-class fabricator of pressure vessels and heat exchangers—Henry is truly an innovator in the global market.


It is difficult to imagine the Toronto skyline without the rounded white roof of the Rogers Centre hovering amid the lofty buildings, nestled up beside the CN Tower. But more than 25 years ago, 1 Blue Jays Way was nothing but an empty lot.


Snow and snow sports: undoubtedly what people associate with Canada, and rightly so. Canada has become known for some of the best ski hills in the world, and a suitable place for learning to ski or snowboard for many generations. In Ontario, it can be a challenge to get onto the slopes with the provinces increasingly warmer winters. However, one hill this year celebrates its 50th year serving the ski community: Mount St. Louis Moonstone.


At the helm of Fort William First Nation in Thunder Bay, Chief Georjann Morriseau envisions “a community that will thrive for the future generations.” The Chief, Council and staff of FWFN have been working to develop an economic development strategy that will support this vision, through industry partnerships, entrepreneurialism, and sustainable business ventures.

Imperial Oil

A truly Canadian legacy:  almost 135 years of operations, through booms and busts and everything in between. Imperial Oil, the country’s second largest oil and gas producer, is the country’s oldest—and has explored, developed and operated to serve millions of customers and provide the materials necessary for a vast array of consumer products.


Behind every remotely powered product on the market is a battery that runs it: Cadex Electronics is a pioneer in that pursuit of power. Cadex Electronics was founded in 1980 in Vancouver by Isidor Buchmann, who saw that there was a gap in the market where nickel-cadmium batteries were falling short.


Vancouver Gear Works: a small shop started by Bob Smith that began with an idea and inkling to provide repair services for the fishing industry. In 1952, Smith started a legacy that would offer efficient gear machining and repairs in BC that turned into a diverse business serving many industries including mining and forestry.


For a company celebrating 60 years in business in 2014, Shrader Canada Limited certainly has reason to enjoy their success. A family business, the company has been at the forefront of automobile service chemical product development since 1955.


For some people, bathrooms are a place of function not fashion. But for customers of Canaroma Bath & Tile, bathrooms are a place of style and relaxation.


In Canada, craftsmanship is important for manufacturers who want to stand the test of time. For LEDA Furniture based in Toronto, solid craftsmanship has become a way of life and a guarantee.


This month, CIO had the pleasure of reconnecting with Sudbury’s BESTECH team, who have appeared in two previous editions of the magazine. BESTECH has been in a staple in the industrial automation sector for almost 20 years—providing technologically advanced products and services to clients in mining, forestry, oil and gas, and other key industries.


In Canada, there are thousands of businesses that could be categorized as “best kept secrets.” Décor Grates, based in Markham Ontario, is just such a company. Décor Grates was founded in 1990 by Ralph Oosterhuis and his wife, Tiki, after they began producing brass floor registers as an ancillary product in their former brass bed frame business


What makes a sport truly Canadian? Is it the climate of our country? The competitive events played every year? The amount of medals won at the Olympics? 


Innovation in sustainable technology has been a pillar of Canadian industry for many years. It is companies such as BIOREM, based in Guelph, Ontario, that lead the charge when it comes to developing solutions for air pollution control.


In the heart of Alberta, one of Canada’s most ambitious First Nations groups is working to provide better quality of life for its people through business innovation. The Mikisew Group of Companies Corporation was established to generate wealth for the Mikisew First Nation, and additionally create employment and training opportunities for its citizens, while building capacity as a First Nation and for each individual member.


Confederation Log Homes was created to help people realize their dreams—dreams of luxury log home living. The company celebrates 35 years in 2014, marking a milestone achievement of successful custom home creation.


In Western Canada, industry is booming. Therefore, infrastructure development to support increasing populations needs to be a priority.


Just over 30 years ago, DSG Power Systems was just a small start-up, created by Percy Hoff and a sales rep he had worked with at a previous company. Hoff, originally from South Africa, arrived in Saskatoon in February of 1983 and at the time, the economy in Canada was in bad shape.


Founded in 1983 by Lee McDonald, Southmedic provides innovative healthcare products to national and international markets. The company, which is privately-owned, aims to improve the quality of care for patients who are the end-users of Southmedic’s efforts.

For 120 years, Capo Industries has been providing specialty chemicals to the greater North American market. Started in 1893, the company has seen an incredible evolution: beginning with the manufacture of leather conditioners and shoe polish and now, producing chemicals for a variety of sectors.


Mara Technologies, created ten years ago in Markham, Ontario, is an example of how entrepreneurs continue to change the landscape for manufacturing in Canada. The company is an electronics manufacturing services provider dedicated to providing the utmost in reliable and flexible service to its customers.


Started in 1983, Quad Engineering is celebrating over 30 years of successful business, having generated hundreds of millions of dollars into the Canadian economy. A solutions-oriented company, Quad Engineering offers a wide range of products and services to its clients, from mill components to complete mill installations


In the Côte-Nord region of eastern Quebec the Port of Sept-Iles is bringing Canada’s ore to the world. The city of Sept-Iles, which hosts a population of about 26,000, is driven by the economy of the Port, and residents are reliant on the business of the Port, and tourism to the area.

Blood Tribe

The Blood Tribe in Alberta is the largest Indian Reserve in Canada with almost 12,000 members. The community occupies almost 1,300 square kilometres, bordered by the Old Man, St. Mart and Belly Rivers.


In Canada, customer service is everything: especially when it comes to buying vehicles. One Ford Lincoln Dealership in Alberta is heads and shoulders above the rest when it comes to customer satisfaction and service: Woodridge Ford Lincoln in Calgary.


In the mid-90s, Juan Lledo had an inkling towards “being his own boss” and wanted to create a trucking company of a different kind: one that truly cared about customers, and its drivers. Out of that inkling, Pemberton Transport was created.


“I’m an entrepreneur, that’s how I’m wired,” Doug Friesen, President and Founder of TAK Logistics told CIO in a recent interview.
TAK, a company providing diversified logistics services in Canada, has been operating since 2006—but the company has more to show for its years than many of its competitors who have been in the logistics game longer.


In Ontario, Ottawa Community Housing (OCH) is the second largest social housing provider, and the largest in Ottawa. OCH was formed as a result of the merger of two organizations, City Living and Ottawa Housing Corporation, and currently provides 14,783 homes for about 32,000 seniors, parents, children, singles and persons with special needs.


In Edmonton, Capital Region Housing Corporation (CRHC) is the largest provider of social and affordable housing. The organization manages over 4,500 social housing rental units and more than 400 affordable housing rental units, and CRHC offers both townhouses and apartments in the city.


Celebrating 60 years in business is no small feat for any business. But Gullco International, a Canadian company world-renowned for manufacturing a diverse range of products in welding and cutting, has accomplished this feat, celebrating their 60th anniversary in 2014.


When Hasan Albulak started Alcos Machinery in 1984, he came to the business with a wealth of knowledge and experience in engineering and manufacturing, so building a company from the ground up made sense. “When I founded Alcos, I was already an established expert in designing custom engineered solutions for the coil processing industry, so I started by offering the individual equipment used in coil processing lines.

Long Plain

In Manitoba, Long Plain First Nation (LPFN) is located in the Central Plains region, to the southwest of Portage la Prairie along the Assiniboine River. LPFN lies between the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie and the Rural Municipality of South Norfolk, and includes the Main Reserve, the Madison Reserve, and the Portage Reserve.


As competition grows in Canada for service providers who are able to maximize client resources, one engineering service company stands out from the rest: BearPaw Engineering and Project Management.
With headquarters on-reserve in Northwestern Ontario and subsidiary offices in Winnipeg, Thunder Bay, and Calgary, BearPaw has been offering unparalleled project management and engineering services to clients for 15 years.


Headquartered in the fashion capital of Canada, Eleventh Floor Apparel is breaking boundaries when it comes to fashion. The vertically-integrated clothing manufacturer runs operations out of Toronto from a state-of-the-art lean manufacturing facility of over 38,000 square feet. The Eleventh Floor Apparel team develops products from conception to completion, and the first priority for this fashion enterprise is quality. The company has an international presence with a very Canadian-made value system.

Adams lake

In the heart of British Columbia, Adams Lake Indian Band is investing in its people—for the good of the community, and future generations of Band members. “We want Canada to know the good story that is Adams Lake Indian Band,” General Manager of the Band, Albert Quinn comments.


GCP Industrial Products, based in Kitchener, Ontario, is a dynamic global sourcing and supply company for the industrial products sector. The company specializes in container volume delivery of high performance, custom and standard industrial products for North American and European markets.


In 2000, Montreal-based Aheeva was created as a software publishing company, built on the foundation and expertise of its founders—who were leaders in IT and telecommunications. Aheeva began developing innovative solutions for contact centers, and has been doing so ever since.


Southport was formally established as a not-for-profit entity February 1990. Southport is a property management and development non-share Corporation that provides dynamic economic leadership and commitment to Portage la Prairie and the surrounding region.


From its humble start in Ottawa 20 years ago, OnPath has grown to be one of Canada’s leaders in sales and marketing consulting. The company’s mandate: to help clients generate more sales. The goal is simple, but the marketplace has only gotten more competitive and become more challenging for enterprises looking to expand their businesses: that’s where OnPath comes in.


Understanding consumers is a vital part of a turn-key sales and distribution service. For the most part, technological advances in growing Canadian retail markets have made it easier for manufacturers to meet customer demand, and predict changes in an ever-evolving marketplace.


Today’s industrial age is pumping billions of thermal units of energy into the atmosphere, and this is a secret to none.  Given the high costs of finding and exploiting global energy resources today, energy waste is becoming a major concern for world economies.  Recovering previously wasted, and very valuable energy to generate significant savings seems only common sense.  However, marketing energy efficiency and related technologies is a challenge.


CIO was first introduced to First Peoples Economic Growth Fund in July, when Manitoba Premier Selinger spoke about the importance of creating a better environment for small business growth in Manitoba, for First Nations communities and entrepreneurs.


Some of the best businesses in Canada start by accident—such is the story of Stephano Group.
Originally Stephano’s Bakery, a family business that began selling Nanaimo bars in the Ottawa Valley, the Stephano Group is now a high-quality baked goods manufacturer with two production locations. 

Manitobah Mukluks

For thousands of years, Canada’s First Peoples have relied on moccasins and mukluks to thrive in nature. Mukluks are a familiar sight in Canada, and Canadians have adopted the mukluk as footwear that can withstand the elements. For Manitoba-based Manitobah Mukluks, the footwear has expanded beyond a traditional part of First Nations’ culture, and become part of the fashion industry.


In the heart of Hamilton, AVL Group of Companies is working to improve efficiency for their customers: in energy, manufacturing, and emergency management. CIO had the unique opportunity to meet with AVL’s principle, Vince DiCristofaro, and Scott Maxwell, Vice President of Business Development, to tour the AVL facilities and get the latest on the company’s development.


Liaison College, a private career college, was founded in 1996 by Susanne Mikler and Rudy Florio. The goal: to provide training solely in the culinary arts. The College has been cultivating culinary success stories ever since.


In the heart of Alberta’s oil and gas country, Lakeshore Contracting and Lakeshore Helicopters (sister companies) are working to improve energy operations for major customers. Since 1982, the companies have worked to build a solid reputation and customer base. Lakeshore companies are Aboriginal owned and operated and operate in the Region of Wood Buffalo—an area rife with opportunity.


When Danny Chase started Chase Office Interiors in 2003, he never anticipated that the company would become a leader in its industry. Chase had a business background, and worked for an Aboriginal business that sold office supplies. He enjoyed his work and built up his experience.

Red and White

When CIO interviewed Paul Frenette of Red & White Developments, we were introduced to a whole world of building that otherwise has not made headlines in Canada. Frenette, who started Red & White Developments in order to build more energy efficient homes and commercial buildings, has been in business since 2006 in Alberta.


In Winnipeg, Manitoba, there is one company continuing to set the bar for home construction to the satisfaction of savvy customers—and Maric Homes is proud to celebrate 40 years in business this year. Maric Homes, a family custom home builder, is on the cutting edge when it comes to home design and creation, and the company has become a leader in the Winnipeg market which, according to President Dan Rolfe, has become increasingly competitive.


In this month’s installment of CIO’s Aboriginal Business Series, we look at the Whitecap Dakota First Nation (WDFN), a “modern and progressive First Nation with a proud culture and a strong sense of community.”


Building a home is a tradition in Canada that has evolved into an art. Normerica, Canada’s foremost timber frame structure builder has set the standard for these types of buildings, winning business around the world.

MC College

According to MC College’s Vice President of Operations Cheryl Harrison, beauty workers in Canada rank in the top 10 in terms of career satisfaction. And after speaking at length with Harrison about MC College’s premier beauty education programs, it is clear why.

Martin Dev.

Created in 1993 by the Martin brothers, Martin Developments is one of Nova Scotia’s most successful restoration, contracting, and construction management companies. Celebrating 20 years in 2013, there is a lot of history in Martin Developments’ growth, and equally as much history in the projects the company takes on.


With the ever-expanding energy industry demanding more from strategic service partners, Metalcare Group Inc. is in the right place, at the right time. Metalcare began as a small oil and gas service company in Alberta, founded by Muthu Palanisamy in 2005, a driven entrepreneur that has helped the big oil enterprises in Alberta thrive.


With a new brand, and a new headquarters, the original ACFN Business Group (a First Nation owned corporation in  Fort McMurray, Alberta), has come a long way. Recently, Acden, as it’s now known, went through a rebrand of its company identity, in order to be a representation that truly embodies its capabilities as the strategic services partner for the energy sector in Alberta.


For over a century, residents in Peterborough have trusted Peterborough Utilities with their basic water and electricity needs. While utilities are a necessary staple in Canadian life, Peterborough Utilities Group goes well beyond the role of provision—proving to be a leader in conversation efforts for as long as the organization has been operational.


In the early 2000s, Shannon Warren was working as an independent contractor for major construction companies in Canada, and was given the opportunity by a client to undertake a project that required him to bring a few carpenters to work under his umbrella. This is when Matrix Labour Leasing, a full-service human resources company, first got its start.


In Prince George, British Columbia, one company is fostering the growth of local communities—through exceptional home construction.
Winton Homes and Cottages, part of the renown Sinclar Group, has been transforming the way homes are created for more than 30 years. A leader in pre-manufactured homes and cottages, the company has made a name for itself in the Northern British Columbia market.


The company, which was incorporated in 1984, manufactures a complete line of CNC gantry and bridge type machining centres. Originally, Quickmill sold conversational software to machine shops, and the first CNC drilling machine was built to save on in-house labour. Gord Buchholz is Quickmill’s current President, and has been with the company for over 20 years—having started his Quickmill tenure as a millwright


Long before the internet was a first point of communication for companies, signs were the most visible element of a company’s brand. And for a company out of Delta, British Columbia, signs are the core of a customer’s success. Knight Signs, this year celebrating 45 years in business, provides second-to-none quality signage to some of the biggest brands in Canada.


In the first of CIO’s Tech Series, we visit Halifax-borne Metaworks. The company started in 1999 and was the first software developer in Canada to create data collection software for the consumer packaged goods industry for handheld technology.


Chosen from a group of 24 nominees, Kyla Gutsche accepted the Peterborough Examiner Women in Business Award this April. Previously, in October, 2012, her company Cosmetic Transformations won the Innovation Award at the Ontario Business Achievement Awards.


In Canada, the world of human resources can be tough. With skills shortages looming in some provinces, employment at a standstill in others, and an expansive geography, Canada can be one of the most difficult places to get the right people matched with the right jobs.


Numerous awards and community achievements over the past 18 months, a legacy of service to long-standing clients, and a commitment to innovation—these are the ingredients that have contributed to the success of Sudbury-based firm BESTECH.


The last time we spoke with Hybridyne, one of Canada’s leaders in renewable energy technology, the Ontario renewable market was booming and the market was theirs. While things have changed for the company as the solar industry has suffered a slow-down, they continue to prove that bigger is not always better, and only the strong survive.

Canada Goose

In the first installment of Canadian Industry’s Famous Canadian Brands series, we look at Canada Goose: a legacy brand in premium outerwear.
The company was built from the ground up, much like many Canadian companies, with one significant difference. While many Canadian brands have left the country seeking less expensive manufacturing capabilities, or other international financial incentives, Canada Goose has stayed firmly planted in Canada, celebrating and cherishing its heritage.

Bercell IT

Established in 1996, BIT Integrated Technologies provides more than simple IT services to Northern Ontario, U.S., and Caribbean communities.
BIT Integrated Technologies (BIT) is more accurately a complete solutions provider to businesses and organizations who strive to create efficiencies in their operations. The BIT team, spread across many offices in North America, offer clients the opportunity to build and grow their organizations—by providing advanced technologies and proven solutions.


In January of 2013, Northwestel submitted its detailed modernization plan for its cross-northern telecommunications services.The company called the plan “the most ambitious expansion of communications technology ever undertaken in Northern Canada” and said it was the largest investment in infrastructure it has ever made 


The word cipher (or cypher) refers to a mathematical quantity of zero, or, a quantity of no importance. While not particularly impressive in terms of its literal meaning, Cypher Environmental, a Canadian company committed to environmental sustainability, might say that “zero” is of absolute importance. Cypher Environmental’s business is solely focused on the path to zero impact, when it comes to working in and around the earth.


Jeff Dee, President of Eastern Sanitation, is proud to be an integral part of his community. He has to be—running one of the most successful waste companies in Atlantic Canada. Eastern Sanitation is based out of Antigonish, Nova Scotia, serving most of the province. “This is what I have always done, run this business, and I guess you could say it’s in my blood,” Dee says. “Therefore, we are very community-oriented company because I have been doing this since I was a kid.”


Whether you’re having a pint of Blueberry Ale, SOB, or Muddy River Stout, you’re in for a treat with Pump House beers. A New Brunswick speciality, Pump House beers are part of the fabric of Moncton community, and who better to celebrate the brand than Pump House founder Shaun Fraser?

Sunrise Group

Canada’s smallest province, PEI, has long been known as the home of some of Canada’s most storied brands and products: COWS Ice Cream, legendary PEI lobster, and of course, Anne of Green Gables.


There are many types of businesses that contribute to the vibrant mosaic of community and culture in Prince Edward Island. The Abegweit Band in PEI, a Mi’kmaq First Nation, this year celebrates 40 years of building community and business


In the heart of Manitoba farm country are some very experienced people growing an important industry: water management for agriculture.


DIRTT, headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, has redefined the way that businesses build interior spaces. The company has been creating “interior solutions” for over a decade, changing the way their clients view interior design.


Invesco Enterprise Services (IES) was established in January, 2007, and began is a 24-person team in temporary office space. The division of Invesco Ltd., Canada’s “leading independent global investment manager,” now employs over 200 Islanders, who work with clients in a LEED-certified, state-of-the-art facility in Charlottetown.

City Welding

Behind every massive machine in the world are the people who put it together, keep it together, and repair it when it needs fixing up.
At City Welding in Sudbury, Ontario, a team of success-hungry welders and fabricators works tirelessly to keep machines running for the industrial sectors in northern Ontario.


The Price Landscaping Services tagline is “your landscape dream: our passion.” Talk to the company’s owners, and it becomes very clear just how passionate this company is about your surroundings.


With the unpredictable nature of Canada’s construction industry, it’s easy to understand why some up-and-comers just can’t hack it in the business. However, the smart companies recognize early that diversifying is the key to success.

Cog X

Cognitive X is a software solutions provider based in Moncton, New Brunswick, and is led by founder and visionary, Sébastien Aubé. The name Cognitive X is rooted in a play-on-words and relates to understanding your businesses variable. “What we try to understand is how to solve the right problems for your company,” Aubé says about the company’s moniker and mandate.


For over 30 years, Lively, Ontario-based Laari Construction has been a leader in the Northern Ontario construction industry. The company was co-founded by Sulo Laari and Aki Tarvudd in 1979, and has earned a reputation for thinking “outside the box” and delivering excellent results on every project.


The W. McKee Manufacturing story began in 1969, when Farmtool and Machine was created by Barney and Howard Stuppard. Two years later, Wayne McKee started working for the company, and just one year later, purchased the company.


In the industrial world, there are not many truly environmentally neutral processes. However, if your company is looking for an industrial cleaning solution that will work in almost any scenario, you may want to consider dry ice cleaning—a very earth-friendly option.


In the late 1970s, Canadian households were just beginning to take advantage of basement space as usable space—recognizing that finishing a basement could add room for family growth and value to their homes.


Dan Veller is a veteran in the heating and plumbing industry. Veller, the current owner and president of Fraser Plumbing & Heating, started his first company in Dawson Creek in 1980, and has been expanding his expertise in the industry ever since.


MTS Environmental is solely focused on bettering the biodigestive systems in the natural environment. The company has spent its tenure developing 100 per cent natural, innovative solutions for agriculture, municipal, residential, recreational and industrial organic waste and water environmental issues. The company attests that its “products restore a natural balance of microbial life, activating the natural biodigestion system to eliminate the cause and symptoms.”

Cadillac Fairview

The Cadillac Fairview Corporation Limited is one of North America's largest investors, owners and managers of commercial real estate. For more than 50 years Cadillac Fairview has been leading the way in commercial real estate with innovative design, development and management.

All Sea

All-Sea Enterprises Ltd was founded in 1978 to provide underwater ship maintenance and repair services. Over 30 years later, business continues as shipping remains a standard in transportation. Ship owners rely on the quality and level of service that All-Sea is known for, from east to west coast.


Way’s Transport is a business success story dating back 40 years, from the western Newfoundland community of Corner Brook. A family business, Way’s has been the “rock’s” rock in transportation services—a company that has provided employment opportunities for Newfoundlanders and transport services from island experts.


For over 25 years, JEDS construction in Winnipeg, Manitoba has been “building the future.” A family-grown business, the company started with one man, and has expanded to be one of the most trusted names in construction.

Sky Mining

SkyMining is a leading and innovative provider of economic renewable energy solutions for remote industry, regional communities, and commercial buildings.  The company is focused on helping regional and rural Australian mines, farms, businesses and communities to take advantage of their abundant natural solar resource


As the Saskatchewan boom continues, companies like Wilhelm Construction are addressing the need for contracting firms offering something “a little more.” Wilhelm Construction, based in Estevan, Saskatchewan, spoke with CIO about the ins and outs of growing a successful business in the province.


At the heart of every community are companies that look after people. In 1987, Ken Klassen and Glen Smith established Priority Restoration in Winnipeg, a company that takes on the challenges of some of life’s most difficult situations: disaster recovery and restoration.


There are some companies in Canada who get to where they are based on being the best in a very niche industry. As per their namesake, Alberta’s Better Environmental Services & Technology Inc. (Alberta’s B.E.S.T. or ABI) has remained a leader in the containment industry for over a decade, bringing clients like Husky, Shell and Talisman Energy back year after year.


The year 2011 was a remarkable one for renewable energy in Canada. As hardship and crises plagued many of the world’s economies, a town in Nova Scotia celebrated the renewal of a manufacturing legacy that would spark national attention.


The co-founder and CEO of Urban Green Energy (UGE), Nick Blitterswyck, grew up with the great Canadian outdoors in his DNA. On Vancouver Island, where his parents were the caretakers of a nature reserve, he discovered his passion for preserving the awe-inspiring beauty of our earth.


In 2003, Australian Michael Humphreys started the Apricus Solar Company, at the outset of what would become a huge push towards renewable energy development. In 2005, Apricus Australia was launched under the guidance of Chris Taylor, whom GRO had the pleasure of speaking with to learn more about Apricus’ technology and progress—as the competition rises for solar hot water products around the world.


Ecotex has a motto—to “create raving fans” of customers. The company has been providing laundry and linen management services to hospitals, ambulatory care centers and medical facilities for more than 30 years, and in that time Ecotex has proven that the trust of their clients is built, not won.


Under the broad scope of waste management services, one company in Yellowknife, NWT, has learned how to take environmental waste management expertise to the next level. KBL Environmental, a company with firm northern Canadian roots, truly does it best for customers in the mining, oil and gas, government, industrial and commercial sectors.


With the healthcare sector in Canada seeing growing challenges every year, healthcare service providers must face a magnitude of obstacles in order to provide the best possible care to patients.


In Manitoba, a hotbed for trailer production, Arne’s enjoys a reputation for being at the top of its trade. Gerald Bouchard, president of the company, says: “We’re known for building the most robust field trailer on the market today. We use a high level of engineering to build the toughest trailer with the longest life out there.”


Whether for water, land or wind, AXYS Technologies focuses on tailoring its products to suit the requirements of its clients. These needs can cover a range of environmental areas, including marine technologies, hydrological applications and wind monitoring systems.


REDRIVEN POWER INC. was founded in Ontario in September 2007, and the company has seen its fair share of challenges. However, armed with a knowledgeable and growing staff, the company has stuck to its purpose of “supplying people with the knowledge and tools necessary to generate ecologically friendly electricity through the use of wind turbines.” - view here


ACADEMIA RFID IS THE world’s leading RFID centre of excellence, working hand-in-hand with an international network of universities, industry-recognized associations and technology partners offering trilingual RFID training and certification, research and development, and expert RFID services to public and private organizations interested in discovering and implementing RFID technology and practices. - view here


THE NEW BRUNSWICK Forest Products Association approximates that over 85 per cent of New Brunswick is forested land. While the forestry industry in Canada has shrunk over time, New Brunswick is very much reliant on the industry in order for the provincial economy to prosper. - view here


THE HYBRIDYNE STORY began with two friends sitting at a restaurant discussing the future. Thomas Cleland and Les Mac were both veterans of the technology industry, Cleland being involved in several leading edge technology and power quality companies over the years, and Mac having many years in high availability power in the data center and power quality industry behind him. The two enterprising friends met in 1999, when Mac was a client of Cleland’s. - view here

Green Sun Rising

GREEN SUN RISING Inc., based in Windsor Ontario, has done something that most companies can only dream of: run a successful enterprise while educating the public about the reasons to care about renewable energy—and the company is thriving in both capacities. - view here


DYESOL, A WORLD leader in Dye Solar Cell (DSC) technology, was formed in 2004 in order to commercialize DSC technology that was being developed by STI, Greatcell Solar and EPFL. Since its early days, the technology has been integrated into a range of commercial product solutions, and Dyesol looks to expand DSC’s potential. view here

Fortune CP

SINCE 2003, FORTUNE CP has built its reputation on offering sophisticated products for the renewable energy industries in Europe, North America, Africa and Asia. The company is based in the UK and is primarily focused on the provision of solutions in solar, wind and bio-fuels. - view here


VERGNET EOLIEN, THE only French manufacturer of wind turbines, boasts over 20 years’ experience around the world in renewable energy development. Historically, the company’s primary business has been supplying water to rural areas, but like a true pioneer, Vergnet has continued to adapt to changing markets and has evolved to offer “original, pragmatic technologies adapted to their environment,” including growing the wind business. - view here

Great Lakes

IN NORTHERN ONTARIO, access to reliable power is critical, for major cities and the smaller communities that are part of the cultural makeup of the province. Great Lakes Power Transmission (GLPT) is the key component of Ontario’s northern transmission system, connecting the northern and southern regions of Ontario. - view here


BESTECH was created to address the industrial market’s needs for a system integration and industrial automation group of professionals. That group of professionals has helped the company to grow to be a recognized leader in the industrial automation market, and based on BESTECH’s advanced line of products and commitment to service, the company should see the same success for many years to come. - view here

Bishop Water
While it is not necessarily a glamorous industry, waste water treatment is certainly a critical one. Bishop Water Technologies,located in Eganville, Ontario, has been a “sludge innovation company” since 1992. Originally an offshoot of Bishop Aquatic Technologies,this Canadian technology-focused company has one mission: to develop simple, cost-effective environmental solutions. - view here


Gary Anderson, CEO of 1,000 Islands Airboats, says: “Hovercrafts are good but when you bring them to northern conditions, the ice cuts the bag that keeps it afloat. And when you go from a hard surface, the ice, to a rolling surface, the water, where the bag has to work at 100 per cent to float the boat, sometimes it does not when the bag has ice cuts in it and the boat rolls over.” - view here


CanChem obtained its technology from Turbo Resources in 1989. Tobey Petersen, president of Canadian Chemical Technology, says: “The goal was to develop chemicals and processes to solve problems in the oil and gas industry. Since the mid-80s we have experienced enormous success with our products.” - view here


At that time, there was only one manufacturer of tree spades, and thenursery’s tree transplanting needs began to exceed this manufacturer’s capabilities. When the nursery was shut down during the winter months, the company began to design, develop and manufacture its own tree spade. And so, in the early 1980s, Dutchman Industries was born, and with it, the Dutchman Tree Spade. Today, the product represents the industry standard for tree equipment throughout North America. - view here

ABB Ber-Mac

Starting life as Ber-Mac Electrical and Instrumentation, the company has been supplying electrical and instrumentation services, equipment and devices, both domestically and to international markets since 1980. view here


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