Mississauga’s Cyclone expects to double staff in two years as demand grows

Mississauga aerospace parts company Cyclone Mfg Inc. expects to double its workforce and significantly expand its local plants in the next two years to meet surging demand from global aircraft makers.

“By 2015, 2016 we have to double the business,” company president Andrew Sochaj said as he joined Immigration Minister Jason Kenney at company headquarters for a new skilled trades program announced this week.

“There’s a huge demand and we cannot keep up with that.”

The private company began operations in 1964 and employs 400 people, 175 of them at its Century Ave. head office in northern Mississauga.

Cyclone machines, mills, fabricates and chemically coats everything from aluminum, copper and stainless steel to specialty metals used in helicopter rotors as well as gears and other parts for military and commercial aircraft.

Its customers include Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier, Embraer and other well-known players in the global industry. Bombardier, which is manufacturing a new regional jet over the next few years, is also Cyclone’s largest customer.

Six weeks ago, Sochaj received the keys to the company’s fourth building and new equipment is already being installed. But despite space estimates of 280,000 square feet, Sochaj said it still wasn’t enough.

“I believe we have to expand within the next two years,” he said. “Business is growing very fast.”

Kenney was at the Century Ave. plant Monday to announce a new immigration program for skilled foreign workers. The new program begins early in the New Year and accepts up to 3,000 electricians, pipefitters, welders and other skilled workers.

Kenney said Mississauga will benefit from the new program, as many business owners like Sochaj have expressed a need for more skilled trades with experience. However, Kenney said places like Northern Ontario, where new mines are being developed, are the places most desperate for workers.

He also advised young Canadians who were trained academically but are looking for work to think about the skilled trades. “It’s not for everyone,” he said, “But it’s a very good income and a great opportunity in the long run.”

Company president Sochaj started at Cyclone in 1978 and in 1989 he bought the business. At the time, it had only 25 employees.

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