Surface Technology Manufacturer Builds International Headquarters in Montreal

Surface Technology Manufacturer Builds International Headquarters in Montreal

Aug. 28, 2013
Walter Surface Technologies' new facility includes its green technology center.

Walter Surface Technologies, a  manufacturer of surface treatment technologies for providing abrasives, power tools, tooling, chemical tools and environmental solutions for the metal working industry, announced last week that is its new Canadian facility has been completed.

The 92,000 square foot facility will serve as the international headquarters for the company which was founded in Montreal in 1952. The campus, representing a $30 million investment, will house R&D facilities, test centers, warehousing, distribution and after sales service as well as corporate management. 

Within the campus is a new complex, Bio-Circle, which contains a bottling plant which boosts production, by 10 fold, of the company’s environmental-friendly product line. The product line is based on Nature Boost, which is a new raw material ingredient derived from natural extracts. The products are non-flammable, non-corrosive, biodegradable and VOC volatile organic compounds) free.

“We really are about performance, safety, and sustainability,” explained Pierre Somers, CEO of Walter Surface Technologies International at the plant’s opening.

“The new campus is a major asset for our future growth," Somers said. "Our focus on 'making green work' is leading to the development of environmentally helpful initiatives which are increasingly welcome in our industry."

Back in 19909 the company began research in green technology and under a banner of Making Green Work” and has created 20 products from parts washer machines to cleaning liquids.

The company, which has earned a number of awards including The Wall Street Journal’s Technology Innovation Awards, reports that in less than six years  they have been able to eliminate over 10,000 solvent tubs from daily use in a variety of industrial maintenance settings.

This means that approximately 50,000 workers are no longer exposed to dangerous solvents on a daily basis and that between 300,000 to 550,000 gallons of solvents have been removed from the workplace and taken out of the industrial waste stream. These represent between 2 to 4 million pounds of VOCs completely eliminated from the environment.

The facility itself is environmentally sound as it has a LEED Gold Certification. Some of the new Walter campus features include: optimized storage facilities with carefully managed humidity for sensitive products to ensure quality; energy efficiency with 49 wells running 500 feet deep to capture geo-thermal energy that keeps the entire facility comfortable all-year round; special windows that contribute to overall temperature control; controlled water temperature in all rooms, including washrooms and the cafeteria; sophisticated air filtering systems which clean the air before it is released into the atmosphere; and neutralization of chemical effluents before they enter the municipal sewage system.

About the Author

Adrienne Selko | Senior Editor

Focus: Workforce, Talent 

Follow Me on Twitter: @ASelkoIW

Bio: Adrienne Selko has written about many topics over the 17 years she has been with the publication and currently focuses on workforce development strategies. Previously Adrienne was in corporate communications at a medical manufacturing company as well as a large regional bank. She is the author of Do I Have to Wear Garlic Around My Neck? which made the Cleveland Plain Dealer's best sellers list. She is also a senior editor at Material Handling & Logistics and EHS Today

Editorial mission statement: Manufacturing is the enviable position of creating products, processes and policies that solve the world’s problems. When the industry stepped up to manufacture what was necessary to combat the pandemic, it revealed its true nature. My goal is to showcase the sector’s ability to address a broad range of workforce issues including technology, training, diversity & inclusion, with a goal of enticing future generations to join this amazing sector.

Why I find manufacturing interesting: On my first day working for a company that made medical equipment such as MRIs, I toured the plant floor. On every wall was a photo of a person, mostly children. I asked my supervisor why this was the case and he said that the work we do at this company has saved these people’s lives. “We never forget how important our work is and everyone’s contribution to that.” From that moment on I was hooked on manufacturing.

I have talked with many people in this field who have transformed their own career development to assist others. For example, companies are hiring those with disabilities, those previously incarcerated and other talent pools that have been underutilized. I have talked with leaders who have brought out the best in their workforce, as well as employees doing their best work while doing good for the world. 

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