MacDougall Steel takes on major expansion

Mike Carson
Published on July 18, 2014
Chris Willis, right, director of operations at MacDougall Steel Erectors Inc., and company president, Ron MacDougall, second right, explain part of the plant operations to Premier Robert Ghiz, (centre) ACOA Minister Rob Moore and Innovation and Advanced Learning Minister Allen Roach. The company is undertaking a $4.5-million expansion of its Borden-Carleton Plane. 
Mike Carson/Journal Pioneer

BORDEN-CARLETON – Success is the combined effort of everyone involved and that feeling is not lost on Ron MacDougall, co-founder and president of MacDougall Steel Erectors Inc. in Borden-Carleton.


“The most important people I really want to thank are the employees of MacDougall Steel,” he said following an announcement, Friday of a major expansion to the operation. “There have been many people who have worked to put this company in the place it is today. We have a lot of young people working for us. I’m not sure exactly how many people we have working with us now because every time I turn around there’s a new person working for our company.

“In the last couple of months we’ve hired at least 12 people and it continues to grow.”

He said with some big projects on the horizon the employee numbers will be on the rise.

“This company was not built by me,” MacDougall said. “It was built by young, energetic intelligent young people who have put their backs into this place, who are very loyal and have brought this company together as a team. We have always stressed that we are a family at MacDougall Steel.”

MacDougall said things are done in order at the company and there are patterns and procedures and principles that they follow.

“Those principles were really set up in the early days by my wife, Gloria (co-founder of the company),” he said.” My wife no longer works for the company per se. She’s secretary-treasurer but she spends a lot of time with her grandchildren and with my mother and her mother. But she has really set the path for this company and it continues on the path that she set and we are very grateful for that.”

MacDougall said the company was founded and 1998 and he is amazed by the rapid growth the operation has achieved over the years.

“There’s one key person, who has made this company grow, and helped us to grow, and that is Ian Oulton (president) from RKO Steel,” he said. “He has his own steel company in Halifax and we have been thieves. We’ve stolen every good idea he has had and he’s been willing to share and help and encourage and give us his wisdom, help us out with financing and all kinds of different things. He is and has been a tremendous supporter.”   


MacDougall said the expansion has afforded the company new opportunity for work.

“MSE has already been awarded contracts that would not have been possible for us to complete with the shop and our equipment prior to this expansion,” he said. “ This takes us to a whole different level in the industry. In growing and developing our company, one of MSE’s objectives is to keep Islanders employed – providing families with a good income and benefits. We are very grateful to both the provincial and federal governments for their participation in making this newest expansion possible.”

Premier Robert Ghiz said it is incredible to see the size of this operation built in Borden-Carleton.

“It’s a very impressive display of technology,” he said. “This company has remained rooted in rural Prince Edward Island but is able to compete for work in all corners of this country. This company is not just investing in its equipment but in its people.”

Quick Facts:


- The federal government, through ACOA’s Business Development Program, provided a repayable contribution of $500,000 to support the expansion project.

- The provincial government provided $3.7 million in new financing towards the $4.5- million plant expansion. 

-The province is also providing a labour rebate for up to $585,000 towards the 40 new positions to be created and a $41,000 non-repayable contribution towards a workers’ training facility and will be able to educate as many as 30 trainees per year.

- Through this expansion, MacDougall Steel Erectors will have the capabilities to meet growing demand for their products and services.

- MacDougall Steel Erectors, established in 1998, is now one of the largest steel fabrication companies in Atlantic Canada.