13 February 2014
Sherbrooke’s TLD Canada is Awarded Two Major Contracts
PRESS RELEASE – TLD Canada (www.tld-gse.com), specializing in the design and manufacture of airport ground-support equipment, is preparing to launch production at its Sherbrooke plant following two major contracts awarded by the Royal Australian Air Force and British Airways. These new agreements are enhancing this Sherbrooke company’s reputation on the world market.
TLD Canada will build 36 PFA-50 loading and transporting platforms for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). Entirely designed by the Sherbrooke R&D team, the PFA-50 is an air-transportable cargo loader/transporter. In addition to being easily and quickly deployable, it has a 50 000-lb. load capacity. Its rugged design enables it to withstand extreme temperatures and adverse weather conditions.
“Last year was devoted to the qualification of our equipment to meet military standards, which are more stringent than commercial norms. This was done successfully. Production will begin shortly and continue until 2015,” explained TLD Canada Sherbrooke CEO, Nicolas Vérin. “This contract with the RAAF confirms the success of our strategy to diversify our product lines and will open up new business opportunities for TLD Canada in the military field, as had two earlier orders from the Canadian Army and the U.S. Navy.”
For its part, British Airways has ordered 44 TXL-838, 7-tonne cargo loaders from TLD Canada. “This is our largest contract with an airline. It is also of note that this company is European, considering that our main competitors are in fact European,” proudly stated Nicolas Vérin. “We are returning to a market that we had tapped into back in 2002, when loaders were the first pieces of equipment produced here in Sherbrooke.”
Launching production associated with these two contracts has generated significant specialized workforce needs at TLD Canada, which presently employs 140. “We are currently in an intensive recruitment period. More than 30 new positions will be created; about 20 remain to be filled. We are looking primarily for electrical mechanics,” noted Jean-Philippe Lafleur, Human Resources Supervisor at TLD Canada.
The agreements concluded with the Royal Australian Air Force and British Airways represent more than 40% of the company’s revenue, and a milestone for this Sherbrooke company: “Strategically, this is an enormous victory for TLD Canada: two of our top products are in the process of taking a share of the targeted market. Of course, we would like to be more present in Canada’s civil aviation sector. At the moment, the vast majority of our orders come to us from the United States, Asia, Australia, and now Europe,” said Nicolas Vérin.
The TLD Canada factory in Sherbrooke is part of the TLD Group, which includes five other factories in the United States, France, and China, and about 30 sales and services offices throughout the world.
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