By KELLY LOUISEIZE
Northern Ontario Business
Algoma Tubes, once a subsidiary business of Algoma Steel, has risen from the ashes after being moth balled and later sold to Tenaris Group, a multi-national seamless tubing operation.
Director Jorge Mitre took over the plant in 2000 initially leasing the company operations from Algoma Steel. However, upon realizing the demand for manufacturing seamless piping in Canada, Tenaris sought to acquire the company and has not looked back since. With the help of the union and the Sault community, Algoma Tubes fused relationships with Canadian distributors and customers quickly and then watched the volume take off.
In the past year the company has been exporting huge quantities of seamless steel tubing to the United States and production has increased substantially, So much so the that Algoma Tubes' staff numbers jumped from 162 in 2000 to a current leap of 438.
Don Tracey, CFO, says the facility, which is the only seamless pipe plant in Canada, fills a niche throughout the country. Prior to Algoma Tube's production, companies had to import the product.
From the first year of production to 2003, the company grew 121 per cent and rolling that out to include 2004's increase, Algoma Tubes will achieve a 200-per-cent growth in business overall. Depending on the evolution of their business, Tracey expects to be hiring more white-collar positions, but remains non-committal about future trade positions.