No matter how good you are, having other markets to turn to can be a life-saver when demand goes down.
Fuller Industrial has spent decades building a reputation overseas as a go-to company for rubber lining and carbon steel pipe fabrications. Today it has sales on every continent and has handled some of the largest and most complex rubber lining projects in the world.
President and CEO Jeff Fuller said he’s steadily built the company by a simple and time-tested mantra: respect for people that includes a strong organizational structure, accountability-based management, people who are properly trained and tested, and processes based on standardization and continuous improvement.
Above all that, he said it’s important they maintain that quality of work so the company can take their business to wherever it is in demand. Their vision is to be the partner of choice for their partners, suppliers and customers.
“It was in our vision early on to have exporting as part of our strategic plan,” he said. “My contribution would be is I kept at it, because to be successful and have it as part of your marketing strategy it takes a lot of commitment. It takes a long time to get the traction it has now.”
That commitment was critical when the mining sector went into a downward cycle. Fuller Industrial had made many contacts overseas that kept demand high for their services. At the time, Fuller said there were few companies like his that were set up to handle the size of the projects in distant locations across the globe where they were happening.
They ship to places as close as Vale’s Complex Ore Recovery in Sudbury, also known as the COre project, to as far as away as Mongolia for the Ivanhoe/Rio Tinto project. Also in Mongolia, at the Oyu Tolgoi project, they started with all the rubber-lined pipe and fittings for the 100-ton-per -day concentrator and are now supplying operational spares and are preparing for a proposed twinning of the mill. Closer to home, they have finished Detour Gold’s new mill in Detour Lake, northeast of Cochrane, and are experiencing great success in Canada and the United States in the niche market of fabrication and rubber lining of pipe for mining and energy projects.
The company is also shipping into two Central American projects — one in South America, and one in Russia.
Fuller founded Fuller Industrial in 2004 after working for many years with his father at his company, Abraflex, Ltd., a pipe fabrication, rubber lining, paining, compression moulding and urethane casting business. Over the years he steadily grew and expanded the business, setting up Fuller Western in Edmonton in 2009, which was sold to CASL group of companies in 2011. Fuller maintains a strategic alliance with CASL. They also patented a leak prevention system in 2012. Their success has earned them many accolades, including the 2010 Greater Sudbury Chamber of Commerce Company of the Year Award, and the 2013 NOBA Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
With a mix of projects in both domestic and international markets, the future of Fuller Industrial is looking very active for the foreseeable future.