DynaGen Among Fastest Growing Companies

first_imgWhen a challenge is big, Paul Wareham is at his best. Through an ideal mix of innovation, resourcefulness and entrepreneurial spirit, the 34 year-old business dynamo has positioned his company, DynaGen, as North America’s fastest growing manufacturer of power generation controls. The company’s roots stem from Wareham’s drive as a university student to crack an engineering challenge. “I can solve that problem,” he recalls saying. “I said it naively, but I eventually stumbled across the solution.” The exercise resulted in the prototype upon which his company is based. Located in Sydney, the company manufactures microcomputer control systems, which are designed in-house, and can do everything from helping businesses control their air-borne pollutants or rerouting electrical supplies from areas disconnected by hurricanes or storms. With Wareham’s problem-solving business philosophy, and confidence, he guides the company’s 42 staff, as they manage explosive growth — company revenues have doubled for each of the last three years. All products are manufactured at the nine-year-old company’s building, a 33,000-square-foot former movie sound stage. Programmers and engineers, who design and manufacture the product, are hired locally and from throughout Canada. A safe and secure lifestyle lures ex-patriot Maritimers and their spouses back to the region. “They are stable, loyal and high quality,” says Wareham of the team. The president and CEO says a commitment to research and development, and its results, makes it possible for DynaGen to be a world leader in its market. A bold claim, but Wareham says his company is “extremely agile” with a track record of being strategic and creative. The crux of Wareham’s confidence comes from solving a new challenge — to create a whole new class of products that is more integrated, more adaptable and more cost-effective. It might seem very high-tech and complex to most, but Wareham’s staff is up to the task. The company’s software-based system replaces older existing electric relays and transistors. DynaGen provides software for remote-controlled starting and stopping of engine-driven equipment, like compressors for emergency generators and remote water pumps. Wareham explains it this way: “There are computers running in your car, there is software embedded in the hardware. You don’t know how or why it works, it is just taken care of for you.” A native of Sydney, Wareham is a technology graduate from the University College of Cape Breton. He then studied at Lakehead University and earned a master’s degree in engineering at Queen’s University in Ontario. After graduating, he worked at ATI Technologies Inc., a world leader in the design and manufacture of innovative 3D graphics and digital media silicon. His work in the area of integrated circuit design provided great experience. In 1999, Wareham received a national young entrepreneur of the year award. Today, DynaGen’s client list includes EcoTrans Technologies of Florida. Last year, DynaGen won a $1-million contract from the company to help it curb pollution emissions in its rail yards. The problem was hazardous nitrogen oxide was being produced by railroad locomotives left idling day and night. The system created by DynaGen automatically shuts down the main engine and redirects all future energy demands to a smaller, cleaner burning power generator. The move cuts emissions by up to 90 per cent. Each unit is also linked, by satellite, to the DynaGen Data Centre to track emissions, fuel savings and engine location. It is the first step into the U.S. market for this product but Wareham foresees major growth because the American Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recently imposed pollution standards to control emissions on the continent’s 35,000 locomotives. Another growth market is the residential sector where blackouts, brownouts and hurricanes jeopardize uninterrupted electrical supply. Automatically rerouting disconnected electrical supplies to backup systems is the idea. Wareham’s outlook has been international, with most of the company’s growth happening south of the border. In fact, more than 85 per cent of the company’s business is in the United States, where clients include household names like Coleman-Powermate, and huge equipment manufacturers like Amida Technologies, Gillette and Power Technologies Southeast. The company continues its work developing intelligent control systems — small electronic modules with a microprocessor, acting as the brain behind the management of systems. Wareham’s strategy is to look at his client’s products from the client’s point of view and provide a flexible, robust and economic alternative. In effect, his company provides an insurance policy for a client’s energy needs. Its successful product line can be found in a range of places, from homes to industrial sites, from the farm field to the power plant. For instance, AutoStart Transfer Switch is a microchip-based system that starts an engine automatically when power is lost. Upon recovery of the original power line, the engine shuts down and transfers the load back safely to the original power supply. The market is worldwide. Wareham’s global vision makes him part of a new generation of business leaders in Nova Scotia’s second biggest city. For more Nova Scotia success stories visit novascotialife.com . -30-last_img

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