When it was founded in 1977, the original vision for Fordia was simple: develop state of the art manufacturing facilities, produce superior products, and provide responsive customer service.
For Fordia’s founder, Clement Paquet, making that vision reality was a challenge that took several years to meet. It required the assistance of a network of global contacts within the diamond drilling industry as well as significant investments.
At the beginning, Clement, along with his assistant and a furnace operator, ran the entire company, establishing the manufacturing and quality control processes, laying the foundations for the global company Fordia has become today.
As sales increased, Clement recognized the need to expand Fordia’s management base. A new generation of the Paquet family – Clement’s sons, Alain and Luc – entered the business. Alain shared his father’s love of sales and promotion, while Luc mastered the management and manufacturing functions.
The mining boom of the late 1980s, fuelled by flow-through share funding, created an enormous demand for diamond drilling products. The industry grew in size and the market became more competitive. Alain and Luc opened their first distribution centre in Val-d’Or, which is still in operation today.
Fordia was already investing in Research & Development, in order to produce the highest quality, high performance diamond tools for its ever-expanding customer base. The company was the first Canadian manufacturer to invest in a controlled-atmosphere furnace, a technology that allowed for greater production precision. As a result, Fordia was elevated into the ranks of world leaders in the production of impregnated diamond bits.
In 1993, the company expanded into South America, with the opening of Fordia SA Chile. Then, a wide array of offices and commercial agreements in foreign markets followed, specifically Australia (1996) and Peru (2004) as well as Europe and China (2007). Today, this ongoing global expansion continues. The little company that began with one man’s dream has become a global force, still proudly representing the ideals of its founder.
On January 2, 2019, Fordia joined the ranks of the large Epiroc family, a supplier of equipment and tools for rock excavation (in the mining and construction sectors). This union allows the two companies to join forces, in order to better serve mineral exploration tooling market across the world.