Canadian Electrical Wholesaler
Published by Kerrwil Publications Limited with the support of Electro-Federation Canada (EFC)

Message From The Editor

Attracting, welcoming and retaining the new generation

At EFC's recent annual conference, Jason Prevost was awarded the pioneering industry award. His involvement in establishing the association's Young Professionals Network was emphasized by his peers, and the success of this essential network for our industry speaks for itself. Discover or rediscover the network in this issue. Often young people entering our industry lack relevant experience. Here, contributor Michelle Branigan tells us about the essential partnership between government, business and organizations, and presents us with a program set up by the organization that she manages. Good reading!

Line Goyette, Managing Editor


Changing Scene

Tools For The Trade


50 Years of Transition in Our Distribution World

By Rick McCarten
Electrofed The heyday for the electrical industry, like for so many other industries, was in the 1950s. The world was just coming back from a devastating war; over 50 million people, mostly civilians, lost their lives. North America was having a baby boom. The world required everything and everybody to rebuild itself. This time period allowed many companies to grow, including the electrical distributor. Homes and businesses were on a rush to build and be occupied. This demand meant that there was a new market that could take a standard range of products and allow them multiple turns. One of those markets was electrical products. Multiple turns mean that margins can be decreased. Read More

Brand Management

Brands Are Not Irrelevant. They Matter

By John Kerr
Kerrwil Today as we approach the 20th anniversary of the Internet age, it's evident the demise of the brand has been often overstated. We have all watched, sometimes in horror, as consolidation swallows up brands under new banners. While accountants drive margins and cut costs, they find years later they have opened the door to competitors who are more and more active in brand building, awareness and getting and converting the engineering fraternity and winning the new spec. Brands matter and marketing those brands matters. What is somewhat disturbing is the thinking that the meaning, role, value and stature of a brand seem to be quickly dismissed. But what is even more apparent is the lack of understanding of what it takes to build a brand. Read More


Revenue Generation, Content Takeaways from B2B Online Conference

By David Gordon
Channel Marketing Group eCommerce continues to be a heavily discussed issue within the electrical industry, with distributors investing in aggregate millions of dollars, and manufacturers redesigning sites, investing to build, manage and enhance product content and considering the alternative channels that eCommerce is creating, be it Amazon Business, Grainger and Zoro, HomeDepot, Ferguson, AutomationDirect, and a myriad of alternatives. A challenge for many is what information is "right"? It's a loaded question as "right" is in the eyes of the beholder (or should we say, the person trying to sell you something?). One such source is B2B Online, which was held earlier this month. Remi Ducrocq, CEO of Kyklo, an eCommerce provider to automation distributors and electrical distributors seeking commerce-enabled sites for their automation business, attended B2B Online and shared his insights. Read More

Standard Products

Jason Prevost — EFC's Inaugural Pioneer Award Winner

By Line Goyette
Standard Products Jason Prevost, Executive Vice President at Standard, received the first-ever Pioneer Award at Electro-Federation Canada's 2018 annual conference in Vancouver. This award highlights an outstanding leader, an EFC member, who has contributed to the advancement of the Canadian electrical industry over the past five years. Jason has played a key role in encouraging the industry to adopt new practices that welcome and recognize the expertise of young people in our industry. After just over three years, the network now has 453 members across Canada and you can read about them in our pages every month. Here's a profile of Jason Prevost. Read More

Human Ressources

Supporting Next Generation Talent

By Michelle Branigan
EHRC With the electricity sector experiencing changes on so many fronts — technological, demographic, political — it is no surprise that the careers traditionally associated within the sector will also be affected. That's not to say that jobs will disappear overnight — we're still going to need powerline technicians to keep the wires working — but the increasing digitalization of the sector will see some of the tasks associated within job classifications evolve. Some jobs will indeed become redundant, but others will emerge to take their place, and still others will merely be redefined. Rather than see this is a negative, it proves a wonderful opportunity to engage the next generation of talent, many of whom may not have thought of the sector as the most innovative and creative sector in which to kick-start their career. Read More

Survey Says

Distributor Sales by Product Category

Pathfinder General electrical supplies and lighting products lead sales among full-line electrical distributors across Canada. Read More


Value of Building Permits Declines 4.6% in April

Statistique Canada Municipalities issued $7.8 billion worth of building permits in April, down 4.6% from March. Declines were reported in every component except commercial buildings. In the residential sector, the value of permits issued by municipalities fell 4.3% to $5.1 billion in April. Five provinces posted declines. In the multi-family dwelling component, municipalities issued $2.7 billion worth of building permits, down 5.2% from March. Four provinces contributed to the drop, with British Columbia and Alberta recording the largest decreases. The value of single-family permits fell 3.3% to $2.3 billion, a fourth consecutive monthly decline. Eight provinces registered declines, led by Ontario and British Columbia. Conversely, Alberta recorded the largest gain, up $46 million from March. Read More


Q1 Investment in Residential Construction Up 8.0% YOY

Statistique Canada Investment in residential construction increased by 8.0% to $30.5 billion in the first quarter of 2018 compared with the same quarter in 2017. All components, with the exception of mobile homes, contributed to the increase. The growth was led by spending on apartment buildings, which accounted for 39.5% of the total increase (+$890.8 million or +21.5%), followed by investment in renovations (+$677.9 million or +5.5%). British Columbia posted the biggest gains in spending on residential construction (+$859.8 million or +16.2%), followed by Quebec (+$691.4 million or +14.9%). Apartment building construction spending contributed significantly to the growth in both Quebec (+$492.6 million) and British Columbia (+$199.0 million). Additionally, investment in acquisition costs drove the growth in British Columbia (+$253.2 million). Saskatchewan was the only province to post a quarterly year-over-year decline. Read More


GDP Rose 0.3% in March; Wholesale, Retail Trade Up 0.8%

Statistique Canada Real gross domestic product rose 0.3% in March as 15 of 20 industrial sectors grew, led by the mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction sector. The output of goods-producing industries expanded 0.6%, mostly attributable to mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction. Services-producing industries were up 0.2%, as increases in most sectors more than offset a decline in the finance and insurance sector. Wholesale trade rose 0.8% in March, offsetting the 0.8% decline in February, as six of nine subsectors grew. Building material and supplies wholesaling (+3.4%) led the growth. The manufacturing sector edged up 0.1% in March. The 0.3% growth in non-durable manufacturing was mostly offset by a 0.1% decrease in durable manufacturing. Read More


GDP Grew 0.3% in Q1 2018

Statistique Canada Real gross domestic product (GDP) grew 0.3% in the first quarter, following an increase of 0.4% in each of the previous two quarters. Final domestic demand rose by 0.5%. Growth was moderated by a deceleration in household spending, lower exports of non-energy products, and a decline in housing investment (-1.9%). Business investment in machinery and equipment (+4.2%) and intellectual property products (+3.3%) increased at a faster pace than in the fourth quarter of 2017. Expressed at an annualized rate, real GDP was up 1.3% in the first quarter. In comparison, real GDP in the United States grew 2.2%. Read More

From Our Last Issue

From Our Last Issue
  • 2018 EFC Conference Highlights
    Close to 500 industry members and guests convened in Vancouver May 29-31 for Electro-Federation Canada (EFC)'s annual conference. The event attracted industry colleagues from EFC's electrical community of manufacturers, distributors, reps and affiliated partners, making it an ideal platform for members to network with industry peers, gain business insight from leading speakers, and organize business meetings with channel partners. At this year's Annual General Meeting, held at the conference, Graybar Canada's Peter Horncastle was appointed EFC Chair. Joris Myny, Siemens Canada, now assumes the role of Past Chair. Peter, Joris and EFC President & CEO Carol McGlogan reviewed achievements from the past year and shared forthcoming strategic initiatives during the General Assembly. They also announced the launch of EFC's new brand identity, which will guide the association into an exciting new frontier.

Published by Kerrwil Publications Limited with the support of Electro-Federation Canada (EFC)
Kerrwil Publications Limited, 538 Elizabeth Street Midland Ontario, L4R2A3