01 Jan Automation Sensation
promation expands into new industries with its system capabilities
Promation, based in Oakville, Ontario, is a leading designer and manufacturer of high-quality tooling, automation and robotic systems for the automotive, nuclear and industrial markets. The company has come a long way from its humble start as a one-man operation in 1995 and continues to look to break into new industries. In 1985, Mark Zimny left Poland with a master’s degree in mechanical engineering to work in research and development centers in Canada. “I came here and I saw a big demand in the automotive market, so I decided to open my own business and it took off from there,” Zimny says. He founded Promation in 1995 and focused on manufacturing automation systems for the automotive industry. Today, Promation has 75 employees, is headquartered in a 62,000- square-foot facility and delivers custom equipment and turnkey solutions to its global customers. “We export our nuclear and automotive robotic tools and machines overseas, most recently to Korea and Argentina,” Zimny says.“We have global exposure with our equipment.”
Expanding to Nuclear Energy
Promation began with a focus on the automotive industry until the decline in the market. “Promation surpassed Michigan in 2003 and 2004 in annual car output from a factory,” Zimny says. “I exported machines to the United States on an annual basis. I couldn’t keep up with the demand.”In 2004, however, the automotive industry began to decline with major customers going bankrupt, Zimny says, which left him looking for a different industry to serve. Zimny decided in 2005 to transition his focus into the nuclear energy market. “The company has top-of-the-line engineering so I was able to move my services to nuclear work,” he explains. “The nuclear process is long-term. I started designing machines for second-tier nuclear chain supply and after years of building for the businesses, I am in compliance with national and international nuclear industry standards.” Today, Promation’s advanced technologies are designed to support plant life management, extend plant design life and reduce maintenance costs. The nuclear energy market became lucrative and stable, so Zimny opened a nuclear division of Promation in 2009. “The domestic market is the powerhouse in nuclear energy right now,” he explains. “The nuclear division has gone through the roof.”Because both the nuclear and automotive divisions are doing well, Zimny is looking to expand again into new industries. The company looks to include the transportation, mineral, chemical, and pharmaceutical
industries to its clientele.