Friday, 29 July 2016

Davis Controls Ltd. - What’s New In The Neighborhood In 2016?

What’s New In the Neighborhood In 2016 ?


Exactly one year ago today, I posted a blog about the construction of a new engineering office building across the street and I recall wondering then, who our new neighbours might be.  Today, one year later, the construction is complete, the parking lot is paved and lined, trees and shrubs have been planted and the irrigation system has been running non-stop during our recent heat wave….and we are still wondering who our new neighbours will be.  The lights are on, but there is nobody home?
              

One Year Ago
Today
                                                                                                               
                                               Here is a sample of the price of admission:
                                              -  Est. Monthly Rent: $82,368
                                              -  Floor: 7
                                              -  Size 27,648 SF
                                              -  Gross Rent $35.75/SF
                                              -  Base Rent $24.00/SF
                                              -  Additional Rent $11.75/SF
                                              -  Availability Now


Hopefully this new complex has been designed with an upscale cafeteria that will give DCL / Oakville employees one more dining option for lunch.  Not that there is a shortage of dining options already.  In addition to the dozen or so fast food outlets within a 5 minute drive, we already have several dining (fine and otherwise) choices within a 5 minute walk.  The 24 cinema theatre complex just around the corner is surrounded by no less than 12 eateries ranging from elegant to unsophisticated.  





 

In this same complex, they are currently renovating the building that used to house LA Fitness.  This facility will soon become the new home of Dave & Busters. 
Billed as the ONLY place to Eat, Drink, Play & Watch Sports all under one roof, at Dave & Buster's visitors can play hundreds of the hottest new arcade games in the Million Dollar Midway. AND, there will be even more places to eat, from wings to steaks, as well as a premium bar featuring innovative cocktails, an impressive wine selection and more than 20 selections of beer.  Sounds like my kind of place!  You will soon be able to watch your team on one of the massive HDTVs with epic stadium sound that will surround you from every direction in the sports bar.


Our little corner of Winston Churchill Business Park is quickly becoming a major center of Leading edge Technology, Engineered Solutions, Fine Dining, After Hours Clubs and Entertainment.




Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Davis Controls Ltd. - So much to do…so little time.

So much to do…so little time.

Brent O'Connor and Neil Montgomery at Danfoss Drives Conference - March 2016 - New Orleans
For three days, March 13 – 15, 2016, the city of New Orleans played host to ‘The Danfoss Drives Conference’, billed as the world’s largest Drives conference, with more than 50 speakers, 80 breakout sessions and 600 VFD experts in attendance.  One of the main objectives of the conference was to present the ‘New’ Danfoss Drives organization and extended portfolio created through the acquisition of Vacon.  In addition to new product launch announcements, business news and highlights, AC drive application case studies and success stories, discussions about current megatrends and insights into the AC drives future, attendees were encouraged to embrace the Jazz club / gangster / speak-easy look of New Orleans in the 1930’s.  Thankfully there was no prohibition this week and Brent O’Connor and I did our best to blend in.

The event was so successful that Danfoss decided to take the show on the road and from June 8 – 10, 2016, hosted a similar but smaller Canadian forum at the Four Points by Sheraton, Niagara Falls Fallsview in Niagara Falls, Ontario.  Davis Controls took full advantage of this local Canadian conference by sending 15 of our own sales reps, who in turn each invited VFD customers from their respective sales territories.  The event was a huge success and Danfoss plans to continue this initiative with other sales and customer events in the future.





For the Ontario sales reps, the training didn’t end with Danfoss.  On June 21, Naas DeJager from ABB Measurement Products conducted an Actuator & Positioner portfolio overview as well as sales and technical training on the TZIDC / EDP300 products, including Programming & Diagnostics.  Then on the second day, the four Product Managers of the Pressure, Temperature, Analytical, Recording & Control and Flow portfolios presented an overview with highlights of their products, complete with sales success stories and helpful selling tips.


Within the last 30 days, our Business Development Managers have been out to work with our people in Vancouver and Saskatchewan, manning trade shows in Dartmouth NS and making joint calls with our team in Montreal.  On July 12, we are off to Los Alamitos, California to visit our friends at Flowline and learn all about their next generation of products and soon we will be in Winnipeg and then Vancouver again to make more joint calls with our people there.  There is a lot going on right now and while we can’t be everywhere, we are doing our best to be where we are needed when it counts. 


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Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Davis Controls Ltd. - The Neighbourhood is Changing

The Neighbourhood is Changing

For twenty seven years, our view looking out from Davis Controls across the street toward Winston Churchill Blvd. has been that of a few acres of vacant field covered with weeds and scrub.  This all began to change early this year when the land was cleared for what will soon become 869 parking spaces surrounding a new seven story engineering building, which is now well under way and should be glassed in by the end of July.  This property was one of the few remaining undeveloped properties in the park and while the new building partially blocks our early morning view of the rising sun, we welcome the change of scenery and look forward to meeting our new neighbours.  Having 869 additional cars spilling out onto Bristol Circle every night might complicate the drive home, but on a positive note, we will be able to walk to these sales calls.


(Before)
While we’ve been watching the construction project across the street, we became aware that the front corner garden, planted when our building was built in 1989, has matured, and in the case of the sprawling junipers, has become overgrown.  The oak trees are now well established and provide a nice canopy over the entire front corner, but the original garden underneath was in need of a makeover.  With a little bit of TLC, we have transformed the front corner so that it no longer hides our main entrance and once again exposes our front door, sign and lobby.


(After)
I recall that when we were looking for a place to move to from 4251 Dundas St. W, one of the things we liked best about this property was that it was strategically located at one of the main entrances to the business park.  It would be a shame to allow this prestigious location to become untidy or unkempt.  Cosmetic upgrades like these are necessary from time to time to maintain a clean, fresh and colourful appearance and this was a transformation whose time had come.  I’m sure that they will install some attractive landscaping across the street and we want to be sure to look just as good as they do.              

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Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Davis Controls Ltd. - 2014 in Review

2014 in Review

This year marked our 25th Anniversary at 2200 Bristol Circle in Oakville.  Our Twenty Fifth year in our ‘new’ building (I really must stop calling it that) has been one of those generational milestone years where everything original is wearing out:

• The phenolic foam roof needed to be replaced

• The HVAC system is nearing the end of its life

• The foundation plants that were part of our original landscape plan are either just starting to develop into beautiful mature trees ... or … have just reached the end of their life expectancy and have started to die

• The IT infrastructure that was state–of–the–art twenty five years ago has already been replaced FIVE times

• The fluorescent lights and fixtures throughout our office and warehouse are old and inefficient and replacement energy-hungry tubes will soon be hard to find

• The parking lot needs resurfacing – again

• The office d├ęcor is in need of a makeover


I don’t mean to sound like the Grinch who stole Christmas.  This list might actually become my Christmas gift list.  In fact, these maintenance benchmarks are not problems.  They are the naturally occurring scars and blemishes of a corporate veteran that has survived most of the material things used to conduct business long enough to even have this anniversary.

The really important things however are not wearing out. As we head into 2015, we are even more enthusiastic, more positive and more prepared for growth than ever before.

• Davis Controls Ltd has been in business in Canada for 81 years

• This year we are surpassing our previous sales record year by more than 20%

• We continue to add new Products and Technologies and people to support them

• New lines, new people and new R&D developments from established suppliers continue to breathe new life into our applications scope and solution capabilities


In many ways, 2014 was a year of positioning and investment in an even more promising future that begins with 2015.

From all of us here at Davis Controls Ltd. to our valued client and provider partners, we wish you all a Very Merry Christmas and a safe and prosperous New Year.


                                             


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Monday, 26 May 2014

Davis Controls Ltd. - Where has the Time Gone?

Exactly 25 years ago, this announcement was sent to Davis Controls employees and a select group of family and friends advising them of the official launch of the construction of our ‘new’ head office in Oakville and inviting them to attend the ceremonial ground breaking and a reception to celebrate the event.  Where has the time gone?  It feels like it was just yesterday.  Remarkably, eight of the people who made the move with us from 4251 Dundas Street W. are still with us today.

 

As I think back nostalgically about the 25 years that we have been at 2200 Bristol Circle, I remember the people that have come and gone and the product lines that we have represented since moving to Oakville.  I recall friendships and relationships that have been important to our success and I think about all the work that has been done here by all the people that have worked here.

 



Mostly I remember the fun that we’ve had along the way; the parties and barbeques and meetings and dinners and conferences and the social interactions around the office.  I look at the people that I work with today and then I look back through our photo albums at pictures of those same people, 5, 10, 20, even 40 years ago and I smile.

 

I thought of writing this posting just yesterday, when a visiting supplier asked me if the office was new.  When I explained that in fact we were celebrating our 25th anniversary in this building, it dawned on me.  Twenty Five Years – WOW, where has the time gone!  I thanked him for the compliment and said:  No, we’ve been here for a while and since business is good, we’re not planning on going anywhere else soon.

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Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Davis Controls Ltd. - Grabbing the Bull by the Horns!

It is now the end of April and spring is nowhere to be seen.  Nevertheless, in spite of a brutal winter and continuing bad weather, good things are getting done.

You may recall that we replaced the roof over the office section of our building last year, and this year we completed the warehouse portion of the roof just last week.  It is pouring rain today and so far…no leaks!

You may also recall that we picked up the ABB Measurements Product program for Ontario late last year and I am pleased to report that the preliminary round of introduction and training has been completed for our inside and outside sales teams and sales are ramping up with each passing day. The ABB brand and reputation is a real door opener and customer site visits are producing measureable results on a daily basis. Booked orders will soon overtake our YTD budget for ABB and our overall results are already ahead of budget for Q1.

I just returned from an Exact Software user’s conference at the Gaylord Texan Hotel in Dallas, where I attended some informative business and product sessions with our IT Manager.  We had the pleasure of meeting the key person from Delft, Holland who manages the product development of Globe, Synergy Enterprise and EWMS.  Not surprisingly, the meeting content and networking opportunities were the highlight of the trip, but the venue, food and entertainment were also outstanding.  Alison Forsythe, the new Managing Director of Exact Macola has set a very high bar for Exact in North America and their future looks bright. 
We spent quite a bit of time sharing ideas and renewing friendships with Exact consultants, resellers and other Globe and Synergy users and I even went one round with a mechanical bull at the Circle R Ranch.  Needless to say, I was no match for the bull and was flat on my back in 24.7 seconds.
With one quarter of our F2015 already behind us, we are off to an encouraging start with even better prospects for profitable growth ahead of us.  Stay tuned for our next blog posting when I will be able to share some new and exciting additions to our product and technology capability.
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