Dodd, who was manager of the compounding operation and executive vice president of the firm prior to his promotion in January, noted that AirBoss Compounding competes against some excellent companies. “What differentiates AirBoss is our ability to provide our customers with a worry-free environment in which to do business,” he said.
It has remained strong in the market because its customer base “consists of some very knowledgeable rubber industry professionals who appreciate our value proposition,” Dodd said.
AirBoss operates rubber mixing facilities in Kitchener, Ontario; Scotland, N.C.; and Acton Vale, Quebec. The Kitchener factory is its largest site by far.
The company prides itself in being fiscally conservative and providing world-class compound and customer service, Dodd said.
Unlike its top competitor, Hexpol, the Newmarket-headquartered firm has not expanded regularly via acquisition. Instead, he said, “we have focused on organic growth and provided our customers with a cost-effective service-based model.”
That internal growth has been supported by a strong, multi-year capital investment program.
For instance, “we have invested heavily in our Scotland Neck facility over the last few years,” Dodd said. “We have added to its reliability, consistency and product offerings.”
AirBoss upgraded the 150,000-sq.-ft. complex in 2013 and purchased and installed new strip equipment, giving it the ability to handle custom compounding. The additional machinery allowed it to make and supply the U.S. market with varying dimensions of strip material piled in a stable cross-weave configuration.
That, in turn, created the opportunity for the plant to handle complex projects with the most challenging requirements.