Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
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Dynamic Air Shelters are in their Element

Emergency hospital built by Dynamic AirHarold Warner, President of Dynamic Air Shelters, knows how to weather storms of any nature. 

From its manufacturing facility in Grand Bank, Newfoundland, this Calgary-based company produces inflatable buildings for deployment around the world as temporary hospitals in disaster zones, protective enclosures at petro-chemical sites, as promotional “tents” at hospitality events and more.

A cost effective and speedy alternative to permanent construction projects, these inflatable structures are increasing in popularity with international customers.

“We’re a new concept in a significantly new market,” Warner says, “so we have lots of room to grow.”

Coincidentally, the Grand Bank facility, originally opened to support a large offshore contract, emerged as a response to catastrophe. In 2003, the company was working on a project for Kiewit Offshore when a series of delays and bad weather forced a shut down.  Left with a well trained workforce and an idle production facility in Grand Bank, Harold chose to relocate the company’s Calgary plant to Grand Bank.

Looking back, Harold feels the move was a wise investment and the best thing for the company and the community of Grand Bank.  “Although we suffered through the Kiewit failure, people didn’t think we had a dumb idea,” says Harold. “We could have been run out of town. Instead, we built on our experience and the expertise we had developed with our Grand Bank workforce.”

As the company strengthens and refines these large-sized inflatable shelters, Warner says the future looks positive. “Potentially, we’ve hit a bit of a home run here,” says Warner. “Our sales projections show that we could double existing sales, and then double those within a year, then double that again.”

The company fills a niche for varying industries from oil to petro-chemical.  After placing 15 controlled work environment shelters on an industrial site in Toledo, Ohio, the site production manager reported savings of up to $106,000 a day. 

In August 2010, Dynamic Air Shelters received ISO Certification, allowing them to work directly with large companies, such as Sikorsky Helicopters.  Add to this an inflatable shelter capable of withstanding a Category 3 hurricane, a significant explosion, sniper fire, artillery fragmentation or a grenade blast and Warner has created a perfect storm of success.

ACOA has provided Dynamic Air Shelters with just under $1.75 million in repayable and provisionally repayable assistance from the Agency’s Business Development Program to expand the production facilities in Grand Bank and carry out marketing activities, as well as to train staff and hire a marketing manager.

Published in 2010