Canadian Electrical Industry News Week


Tim Macdonald


Tim MacDonald joined his family’s business, Ideal Supply, as a full-time employee in 1981. He worked in multiple branch locations, starting on the counter before progressing through various management positions. He has served as president for the past 25 years.

An Ontario full-line supply electrical distributor, Ideal Supply offers inventory for the industrial, safety, electrical, new energy, automation, and data comm sectors. They are also NAPA’s largest auto parts distributor in Canada.

MacDonald, along with his brother and sister, made the decision to sell the business in 2016 to Groupe Deschenes Inc, “another great Canadian family led business,” he commented, “I stayed on as president and continue to enjoy my role.”

The company, founded in 1926, began as a manufacturer for bread-moulding machines. The company evolved over the years and began transitioning into its modern form after being purchased by John H. MacDonald in 1968.  John Sr. would expand the company’s automotive offering and branched into electrical supplies for contractors and industry, while shifting from retail towards wholesale. Headquartered in Listowel, Ideal Supply now has 32 branches across Ontario.

In our interview with Tim MacDonald, he discussed how AD Rewards impacts their sales approach and how AD has contributed to Ideal Supply’s growth.

How has your involvement in AD Rewards helped you to enhance customer relationships, grow sales, and ultimately grow your business?

The AD Rewards program builds awareness of our AD Vendor Partners as our sales staff (inside & outside) help our customers earn rewards. Our customers have come to recognize that they can earn AD Rewards through their everyday purchases if they choose products from AD Vendors. When this becomes part of our daily selling culture at the counter, everyone benefits! Our annual purchases from AD Vendors always lead all other vendor purchases.

What are the key elements of the AD Rewards program for your company? 

It is important that everyone is aware of the AD Rewards program so that they can promote it to customers. Our Branch staff makes sure AD Rewards promotional signage is visible at the counter to prompt conversations, and that products from AD Vendors are available and on display. Our AD partners have always had an advantage at Ideal Supply as we create annual plans to grow our business together.

Our Marketing Coordinator, Peter Mackie uses all of the AD Rewards tools available to drive our performance with the program, and Inside Rewards brings it all together when our Branch Staff can benefit also with the growth of our AD lines.

What does organizations like AD add to your business and the industry in general? How has your company benefitted from your AD membership?

Our membership in AD has been a key component to our growth throughout the years that we have been a member. We have learned marketing and management strategies that have helped us grow our top and bottom lines. AD Members are the most professional and forward-thinking distributors in Canada and the United States. Together we challenge each other to be the best supplier to our customers, the best employers to our staff, and the best channel to market for our suppliers.






Canadian Electrical Contractor Discussion Group: Can You Count the Deficiencies?

EIN CECD 400Have you ever been called to fix the work of a 'handyman'?

"Was supposedly done by a"certified ' electrician....told the homeowner that he got a $266 record at TSBC. Can you count the deficiencies?"

"There is a second panel change in the triplex also.......even more deficiencies. Think the guy was a glorified handyman. Ones not obvious: 240 BB heat hooked up 120....drier on 2p20....range on 2p50....water heater fed with 2c14 Bx on 2p15."

Go HERE to join the discussion



Surgelogic RecallProduct: Surgelogic™ NQ SurgeLoc™ Surge Protection Device.

Issue: The Surgeloc Surge Protection Device can experience an arc event, which can result in a fire hazard.

What to do: Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled surge protection devices and contact Schneider Electric for instructions on receiving a free equivalent replacement surge protector.



Read More


Terry BeckerBy Terry Becker, P.Eng., CESCP, IEEE Senior Member

The electric shock hazard has been neglected.  Journeyman Electricians have accepted been shocked as part of the job, a “right” of passage, a badge of honour. 

This has not been acceptable and Journeyman Electricians may not be aware of the long term sequela health effects of receiving multiple low voltage electrical shocks and how it may have impacted them.  With respect to treatment there is only a single formal recognized treatment centre in Canada, the St Johns Rehab Centre. Electrical Injury Program.

Read More


EIN Code Quiz 2Take this opportunity to test your knowledge of the Canadian Electrical Code - Part 1. Here are two questions on essential electrical systems: health care. 

You'll find the answers in EIN articles written by our code experts — mainly Bill Burr and Terry Becker — and of course in your own best practices. Answers will be posted on our website in a few days and published in our next issue. Good luck and share your results with our Facebook group: Canadian Electrical Contractor Discussions.



Read More



Extech Non-Contact High Voltage DetectorFLIR Systems has announced the availability of the Extech DV690 its first non-contact high voltage detector with a detection range of up to 69,000 volts (69 kV). The industrial-grade DV690 provides early warning alerts of energized electrical components for utility lineworkers, telecommunications installers, first responders, search and rescue teams, and tree removal services.

The DV690 features five flexible mounting options: handheld, around the neck, clipped to a belt, strapped to an arm, or attached to a universal spline hot stick. The three handsfree possibilities allow the most optimal operation to efficiently and carefully complete a job. Using a hot stick creates a safer distance to target, extending operator reach.

Read More



Jo Istanbul Four Seasons ABy Owen Hurst

Recently, Electrical Industry Canada has developed a relationship with Women in Renewable Energy (WiRE), a non-for-profit group developing resources and networking potential for women and all working or planning to work within the renewable energy sector. Aside from being the WiRE President & CEO, Joanna Osawe is the Global Business Development Manager of Major Projects for DMC Power Inc.

EIN sat down with Osawe to learn more about WiRE and the substantial benefits it provides. Joanna is very personable and open regarding her career and her ambition, as well as the opportunities she is developing for women nationally and globally. 

Read More


Stephanie SmithBy Blake Marchand

“It was quite surprising,” said Stephanie Smith of being named EHRC’s Leader of the Year. “Leadership in 2020 has certainly been a challenge for everybody in the world let alone the nuclear industry or the electricity industry.”

An engineer by trade, Smith spent the majority of her career with Ontario Power Generation (OPG). She was the first woman to be certified by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission at the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station where she served as Plant Manager and was recently named the first President and CEO of CANDU Owners Group. Smith is also a passionate advocate for diversity and inclusion.

Read More


Kerrwil Publications Great Place to Work. Certified December 2019 - December 2020

538 Elizabeth Street, Midland,Ontario, Canada L4R2A3 +1 705 527 7666
©2021 All rights reserved

Use of this Site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy Policy (effective 1.1.2016)
The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Kerrwil