CCI Competes In Every Market In The World
September 12, 2008 (Originally published in Manufacturing Today magazine)
Edmonton, Alberta-based CCI Thermal Technologies Inc. considers itself a leader in advanced heating solutions. The company began in 1964 as a distributor for Alberta's oil and gas industry and manufacturer of explosion-proof catalytic gas heaters.
Today, the company's products can be found in every industry in the world, it says, including the automotive, agricultural and power sectors. In addition to catalytic heaters, CCI manufactures filtration systems, curing solutions, electric explosion-proof heaters, engineered electric heaters and heaters designed for extremely harsh environments.
The company has manufacturing facilities throughout North America, employing about 400 employees. It operates out of facilities in Ontario, Oakville and Orillia, and one facility in Greensburg, Ind. The Edmonton plant spans 120,000 square feet, the Orillia location is 70,000 square feet, the Oakville plant is 90,000 square feet and the Greensburg location is 20,000 square feet.
Vice President and General Manager Michael Arbour-Neagoe recently spoke with Manufacturing Today about steering the company through its evolving industry, and why he's proud to work at CCI.
Manufacturing Today: What sets CCI apart from the competition?
Michael Arbour-Neagoe: Through acquisitions and sustained growth, CCI is now one of the top-three world-leading manufacturers in heating products and engineered heating applications. Our company has been structured to deliver unique products for world clients, from explosion-proof heating products, to engineered and custom-designed heating systems, to custom-engineered curing and process equipment and finally to electrical elements used in thousands of commercial and consumer products.
MT: Who are your customers?
MA: Our customers are as diverse as our products and range from single owner/operator businesses to multinationals such as Toyota, GE, Genie Industries, NASA, Bombardier, China Nuclear and AECL, CNRL, BP, Syncrude and Suncor. (They also include) small and large engineering houses like SNC Lavalin, Fluor Daniel, Bantrel, AMEC, Jacobs and Worley Parsons. Our customers buy more than our products. They buy technology that delivers on-time, 93 percent of the time.
MT: How is CCI adapting to the current economic climate?
MA: We have a very adaptable and fast-acting company. From the CEO and President and all the senior management team down to the shop employees, we can quickly adapt our business models to compensate for market changes. This dynamic ability to not only react but quickly revise our strategic plans has maintained our profits, margins and growth even in economic downturns.
Our strategic plan is structured to continue to grow our company through organic initiatives as well as acquisitions. One of our strengths in sustaining growth through acquisitions is to carefully and very selectively manage the acquisition until it is fully integrated within our company philosophies and operational structure.
All of the adopted manufacturing practices of other successful companies such as lean theories, just-in-time, kan ban, 5S, KPIs and inventory management are all present and well established in all CCI facilities. In conjunction with internationally recognized certification agencies with which CCI has achieved accreditations - ISO 9000, CSA, UL, FM, GOST, ATEX and CE, IECEX, BKI, DEMKO (and) Intertek ITS - all other components of a successful enterprise such as green initiatives, key vendor/supplier partnerships and offshore raw material outsourcing contribute to what (our customers buy) and the value and quality that is built in every product we deliver.
MT: What are your future plans?
MA: Our current and go-forward strategy on the economy is to continue to stay focused on our core competencies, engineering, marketing, manufacturing and sales (and to) stay lean and adaptable and sustain our labor force. It goes without saying that our commitment to new technologies and R&D as well as continually improving our operational efficiencies are key ingredients to maintaining our competitive advantage in a global marketplace.
MT: What are you most proud of at your company?
MA: Working for CCI has been and continues to be the most rewarding professional experience of my career. The guidance of our owner and CEO, Harold Roozen, our president, Bernard Moore, and all our senior staff has made it a truly memorable experience.
Our company also does a lot for its employees and their families through company-sponsored events and social gatherings. We also play a role in every community (with fundraisers and charity work).
To view the article as it originally appeared in Manufacturing Today, click here.