459 Industrial Ave Woodstock, Ontario, N4S 7Z2
Year established -
333920 - Material handling equipment manufacturing
Major expansions -
1984, 1995, 1998, 2012, 2013, 2014
US, Asia-Pacific, Australia, New Zealand, Nigeria, Angola, Mexico, South America
Timberland Equipment is a global leader in the integrated design, manufacture and support of engineered winches, hoists, sheaves, derricks and tensioning equipment for the world’s most challenging infrastructure and capital equipment projects.
When Nik Wallenda, the King of the Wire, successfully walked a tightrope directly over Niagara Falls and the Grand Canyon, a bull wheel traction winch built by Timberland Equipment Limited (Timberland) was used to install his wire at the right tension. When the new World Trade Center neared completion, Timberland supplied a derrick and hoist to perform the required pick and lowering of the tower crane used throughout its construction. Timberland has helped build some of the biggest bridges in North America. This Woodstock-based leader attracts the most talented engineers in the region and takes on the world’s most challenging infrastructure and capital equipment projects.
Timberland has been in business since 1947 when the company was focused on the Forestry industry by making forestry tractors. The Timberjack skidder was developed and the product line grew quickly throughout the mid-1960s and the corporation was split into two companies. Timberjack, focused solely on the forestry industry and Timberland designed and manufactured specialized material handling equipment, including winches, hoists, sheaves, derricks and tensioning equipment for construction, electric utility, and energy sectors.
Today, Timberland is organized into five business units: workboat marine, offshore oil and gas, construction, mining and electric and municipal utility. On the workboat marine front, Timberland builds winches used on tugboats, barges and dredges. To support the offshore oil and gas industry, Timberland’s engineers design and build hoists, winches, chain jacks and underwater fairleads used for mooring systems and riser pull-in on offshore production vessels. The construction unit provides custom engineered winch and hoist solutions used in large civil construction projects. Timberland provides large rope tensioners, sheaves and hoists used in the mining industry. In addition, the company manufactures reel handling and tension stringing equipment used in the construction of overhead and underground power lines.
“We set out a compelling vision of aggressive growth, both organic and growth through acquisition and we have consistently achieved our goals” says Jeff Stewart, General Manager at Timberland. When asked what protected Timberland from the 2008/2009 financial crisis, Stewart explained that its business diversification allowed the company to stay competitive and maintain consistent growth.
Timberland manufactures products in its Woodstock facility and services customers worldwide. Products have been shipped to various countries including China, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, France, The Netherlands, Angola, Nigeria, Mexico, Chile and Brazil to name a few. Only one third of sales are domestic and two thirds are exported.
Maintaining the “under one roof” policy is the key to Timberland’s success, says Stewart, “Rather than sub-contract manufacturing of our products we design, engineer, manufacture and deliver our equipment all under one roof in our Woodstock facility, giving our customers confidence that our products will be built to the highest standards and delivered on-time.”
By doing this, Timberland has gained an impressive global reputation in the industry and is able to position itself as a trusted advisor in heavy lift solutions. The company has successfully completed over 9,000 projects and uses this experience to help its customers to mitigate risk by assessing the performance, schedule and cost impacts of different projects.
As a customer–focused and engineering–driven company, Timberland knows the importance of its hard-working team, composed of 125 professionals evenly split between the office and manufacturing facility. “In the office, we have professional engineers and designers who are not only working on the challenging projects, but also engaging in sales & service and project management roles,” says Stewart. “On the manufacturing side, we have great skilled labour, from machinists to CWB certified welders and skilled assemblers.”
Timberland attracts highly skilled individuals from Kitchener, London, Tillsonburg and Stratford. When talking about educational partnerships, Stewart emphasizes “We had great success with Western University’s engineering program in particular.” The company has attended engineering students’ project presentations at Western University, interacted with the class and hired some top students directly. In the future, Timberland is looking to work more closely with regional educational institutions.
Timberland has used government programs, including co-op grants, wage subsidy programs and work-sharing programs, to attract co-ops, protect employee benefits and boost the company’s R&D. The company finds the Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters’ (CME) SMART program and federal government’s Scientific Research and Experimental Development Tax Incentive Program (SR&ED) to be very helpful in promoting Timberland’s innovation and research and development. In addition, the company utilizes Export Development Canada’s (EDC) service to promote its business in global markets.
Stewart highly appreciates the Canadian government’s support for local businesses, but he strongly feels that the Government of Canada should strengthen and improve the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) as the current program hinders some companies hiring international talent.
Looking ahead, Timberland will focus on continued growth in the next five to ten years. Stewart oversees the value-added services opportunities in construction and customer operation fields. He emphasizes that “price is important to the business, but we remain focused on solutions that mitigate our customer’s project risk.” Timberland will continue focusing on its commitment to customer satisfaction and to serving as a trusted advisor.
We believe the future of Timberland is bright; the future of Canadian manufacturing will belong to companies like Timberland that take on the world’s challenging projects and focus on their customers, employees and continuous innovation.
For more information about Timberland Equipment, visit their website.
Published: July 28, 2016
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