By Marlon Posen, VP member relations and marketing
Arctic Traveler Canada of Burlington, Ontario, Canada, has been an active member of MACS – Mobile Air Conditioning Society since 1986. MACS talked with the company President, David Thurgood for an overview of the organization.
David explained, “We currently operate under 3 distinct names: Arctic Traveler Canada, which specializes in serving the mobile heating, air-conditioning and filtration industry”, Advanced Temperature Control or ATC, which specializes in the design and manufacturing of transport refrigeration systems; and Custom Coils Canada, which specializes in the design and production of refrigeration coils for both mobile and industrial air-conditioning customers.” ATC is headquartered in Burlington, On, with branches in Mississauga, ON, and Montreal, QC.
|The mobile business was a spin-off from a commercial refrigeration company in 1960, and through a series of events evolved into its current form, with design, manufacturing, service and distribution capabilities, all with the mobile A/C or refrigeration industry. The company has been family owned, although day to day operations have been turned over to professional staff outside the family. |
David told us, “Our business, which is almost entirely related to parts, components or systems sales, is evenly split between the distribution of A/C or heating component parts and the Advanced Temperature Control refrigeration systems. However the Advanced Temperature Control refrigeration systems are becoming a larger portion of the business due to the increased popularity of the European-style high-roof extended vans.
To support system sales, our facilities in Mississauga and Montreal are capable of completing aftermarket systems installs as well as repairs, but this is generally limited to unique or uncommon A/C systems.
For our parts distribution business, we exclusively focus on heavy duty, off-road, bus or specialized air condition repairs; we don’t get involved in any automotive repairs.”
|When asked about any unusual customer requests, David recalls; “One of the more unique projects we worked on was creating an air conditioning system for an armored vehicle operations in the Middle East. We developed a custom A/C system, working around space and equipment constraints, ultimately adding two independent systems working in conjunction with the factory A/C system. |
Once designed, we collaborated with the vehicle manufacturer to complete air conditioning performance testing in an environmental test chamber on a prototype vehicle.”
Arctic Traveler has been doing business for 56 years; we asked David what he sees as the most successful part of the company. The Advanced Temperature Control product line has experienced rapid growth over the part several years. We have recently been approved by Mercedes Benz as a preferred Up-Fitter for the Sprinter and we are working hard to strengthen our dealer network and increase our market share.”
What does David wish every customer knew about his company? “That is our ability to design transport refrigeration systems, or that we have an active coil manufacturing business. The transport refrigeration product line is gaining more visibility throughout the USA as we expand our dealer network, ad our coil operations gives us greater flexibility to meet unique and short-run coil demands from many different customers.
In offering advise to his peers in MACS, David suggests, “Focus on growing your business based on your strengths and what makes your company unique and not what everyone else is doing.”
David explains the long participation as MACS members; “Just as the name says, the great thing about MACS is its focus on mobile air-conditioning which 100% matches our business focus. The issues and topics MACS is dealing with relate directly to our business. We attend MACS convention every year, because it is a great opportunity for training, networking as well as being introduced to new products.”
On April 28, 2017, Arctic Traveler has generously agreed to host a MACS heavy-duty and off-road mobile A/C clinic at their Mississauga location. Mark your calendar to join them for this informative training clinic.