Adam Hannafin, founder and director of Hannafin Inc., grew up in Belleville and now runs his advanced manufacturing company here. Hannafin designs software solutions for manufacturers and they’re a critical support system to the cluster of small, multinational and Fortune 500 companies found in the Bay of Quinte region. But whether or not Adam grew up here, he still would choose time and again to have his company run out of Belleville, Ontario. Here’s why.
1. Whether you’re a local, or from out of town, it’s a great spot to raise a family
When we asked Adam what he loved about the area he said:
“There’s not a lot of social stresses here, I would say – it’s easy to get where you need to go and it’s a great spot to raise a family. My kids are very comfortable in their school – and I’m comfortable where they are too. I don’t worry about ‘big city’ issues that can present themselves in those spaces.”
There’s a great community here and lots of things to do. “Great events. from the Maple Sugarbushes [a food event] in March, to Porch festivals [a music festival] in Belleville. And any kind of outdoor activity you want to do is easy to access, from the Bay of Quinte up to Bancroft.”
While most of Hannafin staff are locals, it’s easy to attract and hire out-of-towners. “We’ve also hired a great candidate who wasn’t from the area. He wanted to leave the city – and we had an advantage over his existing company because we were more rural and our real estate market was lower.”
But more than those financial decisions, Adam says:
“We also have a community feel here you won’t get in a metropolis – and it’s something we embrace. When new Canadians come, they add talent to our community. Just my example of the recent employee who relocated here, he also volunteers as a firefighter.”
According to Adam, the Bay of Quinte is the kind of place you feel like you can make a difference in and which makes you want to give back. Adam is on the board of directors for the Trenval Business Development Corporation helping other businesses get their start in the community just like he did in 2013.
2. Great Demand For Technological Services in Advanced Manufacturing
The region is rich with manufacturing facilities and twice as many people work in manufacturing, compared to the rest of the country. The Bay of Quinte is home to large manufacturers, such as Magna (automotive parts) and P&G (household products); and a growing number of craft breweries and food manufacturers. While the machinery and needs differ by industry, Hannafin’s expertise of programming logic controllers (PLC) – a central part of most industrial systems – means they’re able to service and support a wide range of of manufacturers.
Since the region contains a number of leaders in manufacturing, businesses in the area are always seeking services that help them innovate and improve production. There’s a growing demand for businesses that provide high-tech, advanced manufacturing solutions – whether it’s designing more efficient production lines, constructing electrical schematics, or upgrading and installing better machines.
For Hannafin, who specializes in automation and control systems, there’s plenty of work. As Adam says, “The area is heavy in manufacturing. As long as we can help manufacturers automate and improve, there’ll be a need for us.”
3. The Ability To Visit Manufacturers Onsite Has Been A Great Asset To Hannafin
Hannafin is situated in Belleville and being located near a number of manufacturing facilities gives their company a competitive edge. The easy distance to local manufacturers means Hannafin is able to provide their clients with onsite support – in a timely and more affordable manner.
In Adam’s own words:
We’re located right here in Belleville, and the ability to get around to the City of Quinte West, Cobourg and Kingston fairly easily, without congestion, has been a great asset to the company.
One of our clients in Belleville bought a piece of equipment and they needed support. We’re local – so instead of driving 4 hours there, booking a hotel room overnight, and driving four hours back – we were able to get there within half an hour, and service their machine. It’s a win-win, lower costs for us and our clients.”
Interested in learning more about manufacturing in the region? Contact the Quinte Economic Development Commission (QEDC), or the Manufacturing Resource Centre, a project of the QEDC.