Canadian Electrical Wholesaler

April 19 2016

John Kerr

On April 13, Electro-Federation Canada bestowed its 2016 Industry Recognition Award on Franklin Empire President Bob Shapiro. Kerrwil Publishing President John Kerr had the honour of presenting the award was presented to Shapiro. Here are John Kerr’s remarks from this presentation.

In my home there is a wonderful memento presented to my father in May 1961 at the annual meeting of the predecessor association to Electro-Federation Canada. It was an electrical industry recognition award and it was treasured by my dad and still is by all of us. You see these awards do mean something, they provide context and a view that in the speed of our world today causes us to reflect and pause, to think, remember and celebrate.

Today I am thrilled and frankly honoured to be here to introduce this year’s winner Bob Shapiro of Franklin Empire. Bob is a son of this business and so much a student, advocate and change architect, he has over his time engineered one of the most elegant transitions of the full line electrical wholesaler model anywhere. Franklin Empire is unique: unique in its values, unique in its partnerships, unique in embracing change, and unique in that they are Canada’s largest privately held distribution enterprise.

Bob Shapiro started in this business in 1968 at a time when the Montreal landscape was dominated by the likes of Union Electric, where his dad had worked prior to founding Franklin. A graduate electrical engineer, he was thrust into the business when the responsibilities of “family first” came into play as his father’s illness at the time prompted several key staff to recruit Shapiro to join as a salesman. Bob said of that time, “I went out as a salesman. I knew nothing, Trust me, I knew nothing but I went out as salesman.”  

Being close to the customer and learning the business from the ground up clearly has given Bob the perspective and view that have allowed him since taking over as President of Franklin to oversee and build a unique, strong and independent electrical wholesaler in Canada.

I remember several years ago when Jim Taggart ask me to help facilitate a working meeting in Collingwood on the future of the electrical industry. We talked globalization, consolidation, selling direct, new products, ancillary products, service and system integration, offshore purchasing, and all the while as we engaged in these conversations there, my eyes would scan the room and I would see Bob deep in thought. The findings of those days together were profound, but for the history of Franklin Empire under Bob all one needs to do is study the shrewd moves and directions he has taken in advancing the firm to today.

In the context of our meetings in Collingwood Shapiro is a pioneer. The acquisition of Playford in 1987, the wonderful and much celebrated merger with Empire and the Backman family in 1992, joining AD, buying Control Mart, expanding into home and building automation, establishing a drive system technology assembly and service centre, acquiring ONTOR, and the recent move to embrace the process instrumentation space with Measuremax.

The inherent strength of a leader like Bob is he is giving, he listens, he is passionate, and he cares. Partnerships and the essence of all that takes is something this man clearly understands, and not only from the perspective of his core suppliers (as would be our collective default) but also from the Backman family for whom he is deeply committed. Hire good people, lay out what we want to accomplish and what we need to do, and let the run seems to be a mantra to the success Bob has helped create at Franklin Empire. Bob too is a mentor and caring friend to many in this room today.

Bob learned long ago, no doubt as he struggled in those early days on the road, to not look over one’s shoulder and drive forward, always take the high road, respect the competition, and make sure the essence of what a true partnership reflects is protected.    

Bob Shapiro and I share the fact we are sons of this industry, we love our roots, but as we spoke last week he reminded me of what we also share, and that is we love what we do.

And as we celebrate Bob today, we need to also reflect on the fact Bob Shapiro’s commitment to the old Canadian Electrical Distributors Association (CEDA) and to Electro-Federation Canada today set the standard for how one gives back and embraces the industry for all our collective well-being.


John Kerr is President of Kerrwil Publications.

 

 

           Partnering For The Next Step                

Siemens CanadaWelcome to the Digital Enterprise Virtual Summit brought to you by Siemens

How quickly can you react to changing conditions and demands in your market? How can you ensure your production will run securely at any time in the future?

Industry’s digital and technological transformation is the answer for meeting today’s and tomorrow’s challenges and market needs.

With the right digitalization and automation solutions, expertise won from practical experience, and a partnership approach that benefits all involved parties.

To explore these possibilities, we’re bringing together top-level speakers, specialists and decision-makers from various industries and experts from Siemens

to the Digital Enterprise Virtual Summit under the motto “Partnering for the next step.”   

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“Re-envisioning Electrical Switchboards”: For light commercial applications, the status quo is no longer enough

Eaton 175x125Whether you’re a contractor or consultant, compact footprint and shorter lead times are a priority. At Eaton, we understand these challenges. That’s why we have re-envisioned our traditional electrical switchboard to assess how it could better serve light commercial applications. The result? The Pow-R-Line CS. 

Join Eaton’s webinar on June 30th, 2020 and learn the secret to shorter lead times alongside the additional benefits of:

 -  Versatile Configuration - Cost Effectiveness - Plus a Complimentary 3D Product Demonstration!

Sign up and join our host Annu Yadav - Distributor Programs Manager and our presenter Aditya Ramesh - Product Manger of Panelboards & Switchboards. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Click Here To Register.

 

John JefkinsBy John Jefkins

In 2011, I started working in the electrical arena and quickly noticed that there was a high employee retention rate within the industry. Today, I regularly engage with Electro-Federation Canada members with 20, 30 and even 40 plus year tenures. Other industries I had worked in previously, such as telecommunications, had higher turnover rates.

Our industry faces an increasing need for talent, with new retirements and product/process innovations and modernization driving the need for specialized roles — some not even known yet.

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Digital Twin MarketA recent Markets & Markets report estimates the Digital Twin market will grow from US$3.8 billion in 2019, to US$35.8 billion per year by 2025, at a CAGR of 45.4%. Digital Twin software is already revolutionizing industries such as healthcare, architecture, aerospace, defence, and automotive and transportation.

Furthermore, the global smart infrastructure market, which includes the Digital Twin sector, is expected to thrive at a considerable CAGR between 2020 and 2025 as demand for the smart infrastructure has been a booming year on year, reports Market Research Explore - details. 

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PNNL StudyBy Craig DiLouie

The U.S. Department of Energy has released the results of a study examining authentication vulnerabilities in connected lighting systems (CLS). Particularly as emerging CLS incorporate distributed intelligence, network interfaces and sensors, they can serve as data-collection platforms that enable a wide range of valuable new capabilities as well as greater energy savings in buildings and cities. However, CLS technology is currently at an early stage of development, and its increased connectivity introduces cybersecurity risks that are new to the lighting industry and must be addressed for successful integration with other systems.

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David GordonBy David Gordon

COVID-19 has heightened the benefit of, and interest in, eCommerce for electrical distributors. Our second and third COVID-19 Electrical Market Sentiment Reports have shown that those with an eCommerce offering have seen online sales increases. Further, from conversations with distributors, their site activity increased. The benefit is that these companies had lower sales declines (and some increases), and were able to better serve their customers.

A further benefit is that their remote workforce had access to an online resource, other than manufacturers, for quick, easy, product research.

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2020 q2 Pulse of Lighting FindingsChannel Marketing Group’s 2020 Q2 Pulse of Lighting Report projects that the lighting market, through electrical distribution, contracted by 20%.

The survey, conducted the third week in June, received responses from 164 individuals who equally represented industry stakeholders.

Distributor Performance
Very few distributors reported either flat or positive performance with over 30% reporting declines of over 30% for the quarter.

 

 

 

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EikoEIKO has announced the the introdutction of EiKO Marketplace, a digital storefront, located in the EiKO Portal. Developed to market and sell promotional specials and excess inventory including generational, overstock, and niche products; the EiKO Marketplace presents an opportunity to offer high-quality lighting at incredible savings.

Due to the rapid development and generational changes of LED technologies the timing is perfect to launch the EiKO Marketplace as an outlet to sell high quality, value-priced products.

 

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LevitonLeviton Canada is pleased to announce the nomination of Thomas Supinski as Sales Director for Alberta and the Prairies as of June 1st, 2020, as Julie Marineau will be moving to Montreal along with her family. Julie will be promoted to Vice-President, Retail at Leviton Canada’s head office.

Thomas has been residing in Calgary since 2003 and has a deep understanding of the regional market and its specific needs.

 

 

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Peers & Profiles

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  Sonepar is excited to introduce Anju Uddin as the new Marketing Manager for their Ontario ...
Electro-Federation Canada’s Young Professional Network (YPN) is a fantastic tool for industry ...
Sean Bernard is the Intelligent Controls Manager, Canada for Ideal Industries. Sean resides in ...
Christina Huang is a Senior Contracts Manager for Schneider Electric. She has a varied, technical ...
Jenny Ng is a Business Development Manager for the Power Solutions Division of Schneider Electric. ...
With over 60-years of experience in the lighting industry, CBC Lighting has established itself as a ...

 

Anju UddinBy Blake Marchand

Sonepar is excited to introduce Anju Uddin as the new Marketing Manager for their Ontario Region! Anju has more than 15 years of experience as a marketing expert, which includes running an independent agency working with a multitude of businesses in various industries and geographies from around the globe. 

With a passion for reinvention and finding success through a commitment to education and innovation, Anju has utilized her exceptional creativity and business acumen to engineer seamless brand experiences...

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