Primary market: Quebec, Calgary, US
Number of employees: 250-750 (seasonal)
President: Clément Hudon
Things going swimmingly at Trevi
During the late 1960s Clément Hudon spent his summers hanging around Montreal-area beaches. But by decade’s end many of those facilities began closing due to pollution issues and suburbanites responded by buying swimming pools en masse. Hudon, now president of Trévi, was one of the first to identify and profit from that trend.
Pool demand has suffered in recent years due to a slowdown in housing starts. However Trévi, which Hudon founded in 1972, has stayed ahead of the curve by catering to shifting trends. These include a return to rectangular (as opposed to free form) pool styles and increasing demand for salt-based filtration technology.
Trévi’s recent move into pool renovations has also helped. “Business was particularly good 25 or so years ago,” says Hudon. “However a lot of those older pools are ready to be upgraded. The fact that we manufacture pool liners, panels and steps, gives us a big leg up in that market.”
Trévi does a lot of advertising, so its brands, which include Val-Mar, Cornelius Pools and Taiga Zone have excellent name recognition and a good reputation, which Hudon feels obliged to live up to. Key to maintaining product and service quality is developing effective staff and keeping them on the payroll; a big challenge as much of the work is seasonal.
According to Hudon, Trévi’s vertical structure, which enables it to provide pool buyers with product, installation, warranty and after sales service is another big plus. “Customers like it when they can get everything by calling just one phone number,” says Hudon. “As long as that number is ours, I’ll be happy.”
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