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Sault company celebrates 30 years by showing off in Germany (5 photos)

Main Filter is the subject of this week’s SooToday What’s Up Wednesday

Locally owned and operated Main Filter is marking its 30th year in business.

Having grown over the years, the company sells its products (hydraulic filters for industrial applications) internationally, with a four member Main Filter delegation set to attend two trade shows in Germany later this week for a two-week business trip.

“Anything with a hydraulic press requires the hydraulic fluid to be cleaned, and we build the filters to do that,” explained A.J. Bisceglia, Main Filter’s North American operations coordinator, speaking to SooToday while taking us on a tour of its local facility.

“Several years ago we expanded, and we have a sister plant now just outside of Charlotte, North Carolina (with a staff of 30), and then last year we opened up a two-person warehouse in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.,” A.J. said.

“We sell internationally to an expanding market. Our product is in big demand overseas, so that’s where we find ourselves attending shows overseas. It makes sense for us to be there because our customers are there.”

Main Filter’s Sault, Ont. operation runs three shifts, 24/7, with a staff of over 60 employees.

“We crank the filters out all the time. We’ve got a skilled workforce and some long term, experienced employees, so we’re lucky that way,” A.J. said.

“We build to customer specifications, all of our types of filters are made here. We’ve got several large customers we sell to. I would say the secret to our success is that we build a quality product that exceeds requirements. We have strict quality adherence internally, and we stick to quality being the priority. Every step of our process has a quality control aspect to it.”

Main Filter’s first appearance during its German trip will be at the Hanover-Messe trade show in Hanover, the second being the Bauma show in Munich. The Bauma show is extra special because this year the partner country is Canada and Main Filter will be exhibiting at the Canadian pavilion.

“The shows are enormous, they’re huge. We’ve attended the Hanover show in the past and been successful with it. It’s worth our time to go. We’ve already got meetings set up over there to meet with our international customers,” A.J. said.  

“I get to do a lot of development work, a lot of learning, and there are a lot of things I develop that are now being used in the industry and going worldwide,” said Geoffrey McLurg, Main Filter engineering manager and technical specialist.

“I travel for the company within the U.S. a couple of times a year (the U.S. being Main Filter’s number one market by far), and overseas about every other year,” said Geoffrey, one of four company members heading off to Germany.

“We’ve also done an expo in Johannesburg, South Africa, Cologne in Germany, two in England, another in Poland, another in Italy (and in North America, large industrial shows in Calgary, New Orleans and Las Vegas).”

“I’ve been in filtration since 1997 in a highly technical aspect, and I find that almost a day doesn’t go by where I don’t have to learn something. It’s always developing, always new challenges, nothing ever stays the same. We make a very consistent product, but we’re always trying to improve our product,” Geoffrey said, clearly and justifiably enjoying a sense of accomplishment and pumped about visiting Germany.

“We hope to enjoy the culture and see some sights while we’re there.”