Business

Tolko collects B.C. Export honour

John Langley, Tolko Industries
John Langley, Tolko Industries' general manager, addresses the crowd after the Vernon-based forest product company won the Natural Resources Award at the annual B.C. Export Awards in Vancouver.
— image credit: Photo Submitted

Tolko Industries Ltd. earned top honours in the Natural Resources category at the 30th annual B.C. Export Awards recently at the Hyatt Regency Vancouver.

The Natural Resources Award recognizes the company that has engaged in marketing, processing and primary production of natural resources.

A total of 27 companies were finalists in nine sector award categories plus two individual awards – the Leadership Award and the International Business Studies Award. The awards recognize the innovative approaches and unique contributions of export companies in B.C., across all sectors and in all regions.

“Tolko is committed to our international customers by providing quality products backed by excellence in customer service,” said Hardy Wentzel, Tolko’s vice-president, sales, marketing and logistics.

“Our export group appreciates the nod of recognition and will continue to build on the service expectations set by our customers and partners abroad.”

Responding to Tolko’s growth in the export market, John Langley, Tolko’s general manager, export added: “We saw an opportunity in the overseas markets and we acted on it.

“Six years ago, just eight per cent of Tolko’s structural wood products from our operations across Western Canada were heading overseas. In 2011, approximately 40 per cent of these products went abroad and we continue to explore more opportunities.”

Tolko, a privately owned forest products company, has roughly 2,900 employees. It is a major producer and marketer of lumber, veneer, plywood, oriented strand board and kraft papers, with manufacturing operations across Western Canada. The company’s woodlands operations have received third-party certification of their sustainable forest management systems.

Meanwhile, Tolko has appointed Jeanette Hoft to the position of communications manager.

“Tolko is an influential player in the Canadian forestry industry,” said Bob Fleet, vice-president, environment and forestry.

“Jeanette’s appointment is an important additional step in Tolko’s ongoing commitment to build and retain positive relationships with our customers, employees, other players in the industry and the communities we work in.”

Hoft’s professional career spans 25 years, most of those in senior management positions as an experienced communications and marketing research professional with leading public and private sector organizations in southern Africa and Canada.

Janice Lockyer also joined Tolko’s communications department recently as an advisor. She has experience within the health and broadcasting industry and government relations in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Maritza Reilly completes the team as communications coordinator.

Hootsuite lands Leadership Award

Tolko wasn’t the only local company to earn recognition at the Export Awards.

HootSuite, a leading social media management system started by Vernon’s Ryan Holmes, received the Leadership Award for their outstanding contribution to the province’s export industry.

The prestigious award was presented by the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters of B.C. (CME-B.C.) and the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training at the gala ceremony.

“HootSuite was selected based on their reputation as a leading social media management company and their strong influence as a global exporter,” said Peter Jeffrey, vice-president, CME-B.C.

HootSuite is a social media platform for businesses and organizations to collaboratively execute campaigns across social networks such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ Pages from one secure, web-based dashboard. Advanced functionality includes tools for audience engagement, team collaboration, account security and comprehensive analytics for end-to-end measurement and reporting.

“As a high-velocity growth company, we are so delighted to be the first web-based company in the history of the B.C. Export Awards to win in the leadership category,” said Holmes, CEO.

“It is a huge honour to be recognized in this way by our peers, the CME-B.C. and the provincial government.”

 

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