Ontario Global Traders Awards celebrate exporters' achievements in Northern Ontario

Archived Release

Ontario Global Traders Awards celebrate exporters' achievements in Northern Ontario

NORTH BAY, ON, April 11 /CNW/ - The Ontario government today recognized leading small- and medium-sized exporters in Northern Ontario for outstanding achievements and contributions to the province's prosperity with the 2001 Ontario Global Traders Awards, presented by Parliamentary Assistant Ted Chudleigh, on behalf of Ontario Minister of Economic Development and Trade Bob Runciman.
The awards program was launched by the Ontario government in 1998 to recognize the success of the province's small- and medium-sized exporters and to encourage more companies to expand into global markets.
"Exporters are the face of Ontario on the international stage," Chudleigh said. "They help raise awareness and appreciation of our country, our culture, and our way of life in all corners of the world. They are, in fact, our best ambassadors. That's why Global Traders Awards are so important and today, we give credit where credit is due."
"Our government has worked hard to build the ideal business climate for growth and job creation, and to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship," Runciman said. "These exporters have succeeded with great results, reinforcing the confidence I have in their abilities and our provincial economy."

Recipients were recognized with Regional Awards, Awards of Merit and Honourable Mentions at the fourth annual Ontario Global Traders Awards Northern regional ceremony in North Bay. Winners of the top Regional Awards included:

Leadership Award:
- Jon Baird, CAMESE (Markham)
Innovation Award:
- Ebert Welding Ltd. (New Liskeard)
Market Expansion Award - Product:
- Quality Hardwoods Ltd. (Powassan)
Market Expansion Award - Service:
- R. L. Tomlinson Drafting and Blueprinting Inc. (Thunder Bay)
Partnership Award:
- Filtrec North America and Main Filter Group
(both from Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.)
Student Achievement Award (Award of Merit):
- Holly-Anne Houle (Sudbury)

"We are very pleased to join these awards and to celebrate the achievements of Ontario's exporting leaders," said Duarte Miranda, Vice- President, Trade, RBC Global Services. "Helping small- and medium-sized exporters reach out and succeed in export markets is part of our history at the bank and we're proud to be part of their success in global markets," he said.
Judges reviewed 230 nominations from across Ontario to select winners for the four regional Ontario Global Traders Awards ceremonies this year. Collectively, the nominated companies reported total sales rising 32 per cent over the past three years, from $840 million in 1998-1999 to $1.1 billion in 2000-2001.
The nominees' export sales climbed even more dramatically, rising 46 per cent, from $473 million to $690 million over the last three years. They also reported that exports helped increase jobs by 30 per cent over that period, with total employment going from 4,754 to 6,164 jobs.
Exports generate the equivalent of more than 50 per cent of Ontario's Gross Domestic Product and sustain 1.6 million jobs in Ontario.

This was the last of four Regional Global Traders Awards ceremonies across Ontario. Previous ceremonies were held:
- March 21 in Guelph (Southwestern Ontario);
- March 28 in Niagara Falls (Central Ontario); and,
- April 4 in Brockville (Eastern Ontario).

Regional award recipients compete for the top provincial award in each category, to be presented at the Ontario Global Traders Awards provincial ceremony May 15, 2002 in Toronto.
The Ontario Global Traders Awards are presented by Ontario Exports Inc., the Government of Ontario's lead trade agency and RBC Global Services. Other sponsors include Export Development Canada; Deloitte & Touche LLP; The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario; Canadian Commercial Corporation; United Parcel Service (UPS) Canada Ltd; PROFIT; Canadian Business and Le Lien Economique.

Note to news and business editors: A complete list of award recipients is
attached.

2001 ONTARIO GLOBAL TRADERS AWARDS
NORTHERN REGION

Leadership Award

Regional Award
--------------

Jon Baird,
Managing Director, CAMESE,
Markham, Ontario

The Canadian Association of Mining Equipment and Services for Export, or
CAMESE, is the national voice for Canada's mining equipment and services
exporters. In 1993, when Jon Baird became the managing director of
CAMESE, there were 28 member firms. Today there are over 250 member
firms, a majority in Northern Ontario. Under his leadership, CAMESE has
become a strong and focused organization dedicated to encouraging and
assisting mining supply firms to export, and an important voice for
business and industry in Northern Ontario. As a member of the Government
of Ontario's recent Export Marketing Task Force, Mr. Baird advocated for
national and sectoral export trade associations such as CAMESE, to play a
stronger role in promoting exports for small and medium-sized
enterprises. He continues to act on his belief that SMEs represent a real
export growth opportunity and that it is particularly important that
they have access to the resources they need to develop into successful
exporters.
Contact: Jon Baird, Managing Director
Address: 101-345 Renfrew Drive, Markham, ON, L3R 9S9
Phone: 905-513-0046
-----------------------

Award of Merit
--------------

Paul Brooks,
President and General Manager, Quality Hardwoods Ltd.
Powassan, Ontario

Paul Brooks, president and general manager of Quality Hardwoods of
Powassan, not only leads by example, he is well known and respected as
someone who gives back to his industry and his community. A speaker at
export summit meetings in North Bay where he shares his own recipe for
export success, Mr. Brooks has been an active member of the National
Hardwood Lumber Association's Board of Directors - the largest hardwood
association in North America. In this forum and others, he has been a
constant advocate for the importance of exporting.
Contact: Jayne Peters, Office Administrator
Address: P.O. Box 40, 196 Latour Crescent, Powassan, ON, P0H 1Z0
Phone: 705-724-2424
-----------------------

Honourable Mention
------------------
Tom Palangio,
President, Topex Inc.
Bonfield, Ontario

As president of Topex Inc., an independent explosives consulting firm
based in Bonfield, Ontario, Tom Palangio has successfully developed
international clientele and a global network of distributors and agents.
Tom Palangio appreciates how difficult it is for Canadian small and
medium-sized enterprises in the mining services sector to conduct a
stable business without developing export markets. As Chairman of the
Blue Sky Mining Summit Group, co-chair of the Mining Week Activities and
as a mentor for Nipissing East Community Opportunities, he uses his
leadership, experience and worldwide contacts to help other companies
expand into the export market.
Contact: Tom C. Palangio
Address: 145 Palangio Road, P.O. Box 101, Bonfield, ON, P0H 1E0
Phone: 705-776-2478
-----------------------

Innovation Award

Regional Award
--------------

Ebert Welding Ltd.
New Liskeard, Ontario

Volunteer snowmobile clubs don't exactly have a lot of money to spend on
grooming trails. Ebert Welding solved that problem with the development
of "Sur-Trac" trail groomers. By adapting existing New Holland farm
tractors, Ebert Welding's Sur-Trac groomers offered affordable, durable,
reliable and easy-to-operate trail-grooming equipment that could easily
be converted back to farm use in the off-season or for resale. Based in
New Liskeard, Ebert Welding now exports more than 50 per cent of their
Sur-Trac groomers to the U.S. market.
President: Martin Auger
Contact: Ian Auger, Operations Manager
Address: Highway 65 East, P.O. Box 1386, New Liskeard, ON, P0J 1P0
Phone: 705-647-6896
-----------------------

Award of Merit
--------------

Ontrak Control Systems Inc.
Sudbury, Ontario

Ontrak Control Systems has made its mark in the competitive world of data
acquisition systems. Ontrak has the ability to meet its customers'
special needs for data acquisition without going through a time-consuming
and expensive ground-up design approach. Instead, by making slight
modifications to their innovative stock data interfaces, Ontrak is able
to beat the competition in price and turn-around time. Based in Sudbury,
Ontrak has exploited the Internet so effectively that its web site
virtually drives its advertising efforts.
Contact: Mr. Tom Fortin, Director
Address: 764 Notre Dame Avenue, Sudbury, ON, P3A 2T2
Phone: 705-671-2652
-----------------------

Honourable Mention
------------------
WipWare Inc.
Bonfield, Ontario

In the mining and metallurgy industry, the science of breaking rock
efficiently took a major leap forward when WipWare developed its WipFrag
Photoanalysis System. In the past, calculating the size of fragments that
result from blasting, crushing and grinding was a necessary but slow and
costly exercise. When the Bonfield-based WipWare Corporation created a
versatile system that uses cameras to capture images and measures objects
ranging in size from dust to that of a Volkswagen, it created a new,
convenient and cost-effective ruler for the industry. Response to
additional customer-driven innovations has improved accuracy, flexibility
and cost-effectiveness in ways that keep WipFrag in demand throughout the
world.
President: Norbert Maerz
Contact: Tom C. Palangio, Vice-President, Marketing and Sales
Address: 145 Palangio Road, Bonfield, ON, P0H 1E0
Phone: 705-776-1882
-----------------------

Market Expansion Award - Product

Regional Award
--------------

Quality Hardwoods Ltd.
Powassan, Ontario

Quality Hardwoods made the move from broker-wholesaler to high quality
kiln-dried lumber and distribution, opening up newer, more lucrative
markets overseas. Quality Hardwoods has found a formula for success.
Based in Powassan, Quality Hardwoods has made substantial investments not
only in additional kilns, warehousing space and machinery, but also in
employee training. Knowledgeable employees have been an important factor
in foreseeing industry trends, sourcing lumber and making the most of
sales opportunities at trade conferences and fairs in the United States
and Europe.
President: Paul Brooks
Contact: Jayne Peters, Office Administrator
Address: P.O. Box 40, 196 Latour Crescent, Powassan, ON, P0H 1Z0
Phone: 705-724-2424
-----------------------

Award of Merit
--------------

Ebert Welding Ltd.
New Liskeard, Ontario

As recreational snowmobiling increased in popularity, Ebert Welding's
exports of Sur-Trac trail groomers have increased. Affordable, rugged,
reliable, and easy to operate and maintain, Ebert Welding has the
snowmobile trail groomer of choice for the growing ranks of volunteer
snowmobile clubs. Based in New Liskeard, Ebert Welding developed this
market through innovation and by listening to its customers. Compared to
the early 1990's when the market for Sur-Trac was almost exclusively in
Ontario and Quebec, the United States now accounts for more than 50 per
cent of its orders.
President: Martin Auger
Contact: Ian Auger, Operations Manager
Address: Highway 65 East, P.O. Box 1386, New Liskeard, ON, P0J 1P0
Phone: 705-647-6896
-----------------------

Honourable Mention
------------------
Norfab Building Components Ltd.
Fort Frances, Ontario

A previous Ontario Global Traders Award winner, Norfab Building
Components Ltd. reports another successful year of exporting value-added
building products. Based in Fort Frances, Norfab regularly retools its
production line to meet its commitment to the introduction of at least
two new product lines every year. With approximately 80 per cent of sales
to the United States, Norfab's products can be found in close to 4,200
retailers, lumberyards and major "box" outlets throughout the United
States and Canada.
President: Mel Degagne
Contact: Brian Hagarty, General Manager
Address: 732 Renfrew Drive, (Site: Highway 11-71), Fort Frances, ON,
P9A 3G6
Phone: 807-274-7401 ext 224
-------------------------------

Market Expansion Award - Service

Regional Award
--------------

R. L. Tomlinson Drafting and Blueprinting Inc.
Thunder Bay, Ontario

Based in Thunder Bay, R. L. Tomlinson Drafting & Blueprinting provides
reproduction services and drafting in the fields of electrical,
architectural, structural and pre-cast concrete detailing. The company
broke into the U.S. market through a lot of hard work researching
prospective clients, face-to-face meetings, applying people skills and
providing a quality product. Before long, it became necessary to hire
more staff and better equipment to keep up with the demand for its
services, which now include interior design. R. L. Tomlinson Drafting &
Blueprinting takes full advantage of Internet technology to communicate
with clients while maintaining excellent customer service.
President: Robert Tomlinson
Contact: Steve Meyer, CAD Systems Manager
Address: 107 N. Cumberland Street, Thunder Bay, ON, P7A 4M3
Phone: 807-345-6375
-----------------------

Award of Merit
--------------

McIntosh Engineering Ltd.
North Bay, Ontario

North Bay's McIntosh Engineering provides technical consulting services
to the international mining industry, specializing in underground mine
design and construction management assistance. McIntosh is a fully
independent employee-owned and operated mining engineering services
company with a well-deserved reputation for quality, response time,
commitment and integrity. This reputation, combined with effective
networking, will continue to make McIntosh a leader in global market for
its technical consulting services. The company plans to invest a greater
effort in developing strategic relationships to achieve export sales that
make up 50 per cent of its total revenue.
President: Robert Rappolt
Contact: Douglas Stirling, Vice-President, Finance
Address: 710 McKeown Avenue, Box 21043, North Bay, ON, PIB 9N8
Phone: 705-494-8255
-----------------------

Honourable Mention
------------------

HLS HARD-LINE Solutions Inc.
Dowling, Ontario

From its home base in Dowling, HLS HARD-LINE Solutions offers its state-
of-the-art technological resources to the growing South American mining
industry. HLS conceives, designs, integrates and services industrial
robotic control systems and communications infrastructures that help its
clients to meet increasing production goals. HLS expects to increase its
export potential by dedicating 75 per cent of its trade show activity
outside Canada and placing additional sales representatives in strategic
markets.
General Manager: Walter Siggelkow
Contact: Jamie Lachapelle, Sales Manager
Address: 53 Main Street, Box 908, Dowling, ON, P0M 1R0
Phone: 705-855-1310
-----------------------

Partnership Award

Regional Award
--------------

Filtrec North America
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario

Main Filter Group
Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario

Filtrec North America and Main Filter Group continue to represent a
northern partnership worthy of recognition. Filtrec NA and Main Filter
have grown their partnership to meet the hydraulic filtration needs of
the North American market. Filtrec NA has evolved beyond being just a
distributor of hydraulic filter cartridges to become a manufacturer as
well, while Main Filter sells and distributes complementary filtration
products. The partnership has meant an exponential growth in export sales
for both companies.
Filtrec North America
President: Steve Turmaine
Contact: Tanya Mageran, Office Administrator
Address: P.O. Box 696, 188 Industrial Park Crescent,
Sault Ste. Marie, ON, P6A 5N2
Phone: 705-256-6622
-----------------------

Main Filter Group
President: Steve Turmaine
Contact: Robert MacRae, Vice-President of Operations
Address: 188 Industrial Park Crescent, Sault Ste. Marie, ON, P6B 5P2
Phone: 705-945-6429
-----------------------

Award of Merit
--------------

Prestige Glass International Inc.
Elliot Lake, Ontario

Using formal and informal preferred vendor agreements with U.S.
distributors such as Adventures in Advertising and Proforma, Prestige
Glass International is growing its export market potential for the
company's etched glass and crystal corporate recognition products. In
addition, the company also sells unetched product to its U.S. competitors
through a strategic alliance with Rayzist Corporation. Building on
initial success of these special arrangements, Elliot Lake's Prestige
Glass plans to expand exports of its uniquely Canadian products to the
billion-dollar U.S. market for awards and recognition pieces. Prestige
Glass International Inc.
President: Robert Jackson
Contact: Paullette Jeffrey, Marketing Coordinator/Market Research
Address: 5 Roddis Road, Elliot Lake, ON, P5A 2T1
Phone: 705-848-1723
-----------------------

Student Achievement Award

Award of Merit
--------------

Holly-Anne Houle
Sudbury, Ontario

A student in the Tourism and Travel program at Cambrian College,
Holly-Anne Houle undertook a 12-week placement in Tamil Nadu, India,
where she explored the possibility of establishing a French-language
learning centre. Her experience led to the creation of a unique French
language link between Canada and India. The experience also led
Holly-Anne Houle to believe that there was a market for French-language
teachers and teaching resources. As a result of her interest, a permanent
French-language centre was created in Tamil Nadu which, in itself, has
created a market for Canadian businesses and educational institutions. A
graduating student of the Tourism and Travel program at Cambrian College
in Sudbury, her career goals include the marketing and promotion of
Canadian products abroad.
Contact: Holly-Anne Houle
Address: 4391 Marquis Court, Sudbury, ON, P3P 1X8
Phone: 705-524-6061 (days) or 705-969-9673 (evenings)
---------------------------------------------------------

Backgrounder

2001 ONTARIO GLOBAL TRADERS AWARDS

The Ontario Global Traders Awards celebrate and champion export success in Ontario. Co-ordinated by Ontario Exports Inc. - the Government of Ontario's lead trade agency - they are Ontario's first awards recognizing export achievement for small- and medium-sized enterprises. This is the fourth year of the awards, in which winners of top regional awards become eligible to win a Provincial award. Awards are given in six categories: Leadership; Innovation; Market Expansion (Product and Service); Partnership; and Student Achievement, which includes a cash bursary for the first time this year.

Who is Eligible?

- Ontario-based, small- to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in
business a minimum of three fiscal years, based in Ontario, with
annual sales of up to $50 million and a maximum of 200 employees.
Eligible enterprises must export to one or more countries and have
export sales that are at least 15 per cent of total sales.
- Leaders who champion the cause of exporting by Ontario SMEs.
- SMEs and their partners whose alliance has contributed in a
significant way to the export success of an Ontario-based SME.
- Students whose achievements have contributed to the export success of
Ontario's business community. Open to Ontario residents under the age
of 30, who were enrolled in part- or full-time studies in
international business or related fields for at least one semester in
2001, in an Ontario college/university.

About Nominations
Companies or individuals may nominate themselves or be nominated by a trade association, customer or anyone else who knows their situation well. Nominations are evaluated by regional judging panels for the regional awards, representing leaders from business, education and economic development groups. A provincial panel selects provincial award recipients from the short-list of regional award winners. The deadline for nominations for the 2001 awards was November 2, 2001, and nominations are closed. An early edition of the 2002 Nomination Guide and Forms is available online from the OGTA website at www.ontario-canada.com/export.

2001 Awards Schedule-Regional and Provincial Ceremonies

March 21, 2002 - Guelph (Southwest Region Ceremony)
March 28, 2002 - Niagara Falls (Central Region Ceremony)
April 4, 2002 - Brockville (Eastern Region Ceremony)
April 11, 2002 - North Bay (Northern Region Ceremony)
May 15, 2002 - Toronto (Provincial Awards Ceremony)

Sponsors
The Ontario Global Traders Awards are presented by Ontario Exports Inc. and RBC Global Services. Award sponsors also include Export Development Canada; Deloitte & Touche LLP; The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario; Canadian Commercial Corporation; and United Parcel Service (UPS) Canada Ltd. Media sponsors include PROFIT; Canadian Business and Le Lien Economique. The awards also have the support of the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, the Young Entrepreneurs Association, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, and the Forum for International Trade Training (FITT).

For More Information Call Ontario Exports Inc. toll-free at 1-877-46TRADE (8-7233). Within the GTA, call (416) 314-8200 or visit www.ontario-canada.com/export to learn more about the program and the award ceremonies.

Disponible en français

For more information, visit: www.ontario-canada.com/export

/NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: 3 photos accompanying this release are available
on the Canadian Press Photo Network/
For further information: Contacts - Lara Coombs, Parliamentary Assistant's Office, (416) 325-8679, (416) 578-2290 (cell); André Quenneville, Ontario Exports Inc., (416) 325-4676, (416) 726-0403 (cell); Eric Shapiro, Communications & Public Affairs Branch, (416) 325-6698