Power Drywall

Impressive History, Exciting Future

Power Drywall is one of the leading full-service drywall contracting firms in British Columbia. Incorporated in 1980, the company began as a small family-owned business that operated out of a home office. They started as a drywall subcontractor, doing various jobs right in a few-thousand dollar range. As years went on, Power Drywall built itself up to a place where they could expand their projects to include high-rise construction and shopping centres. They also began incorporating services such as insulation, steel studs for framing, exterior stucco finish systems, acoustical ceilings, as well as other types of speciality ceilings.

In 1988, the company moved into a strip mall and purchased an office unit that had a warehouse in the back. At that time, Power Drywall started its steady, continuous growth at an annual rate. By 2003, they finally bought their own land and constructed their own warehouse and office building in the Gloucester Park area of Langley, British Columbia. Right now, the company is completing some of the major projects in the Vancouver Lower Mainland and has two satellite offices—the other one is in Okanogan Valley.

Over the past decade, Power Drywall’s workforce has typically numbered 250 or more and has developed into an integrated, high-quality and highly productive team. At present the supervisory staff and workforce are segregated into residential, commercial and manufacturing divisions. Our project range encompasses custom single residence, multi-family low and medium rise, high rise, retail, institutional and industrial construction.

Setting themselves apart
Over the past 29 years, Power Drywall has positioned itself to as a company with a competitive edge. Vic Semenov, General Manager, says there are a few ways in which Power Drywall has set itself apart of the competition.

“From the very beginning, Power Drywall was different in how we came into the market,” he says. “Instead of going out into the industry and marketing ourselves to everyone, we chose to approach certain clientele. Our customers became a small group of main players in the construction industry. After getting the job, we provided the best service to those clients. Our motto has always been based in the retail sector; if customers aren’t pleased with service or quality, they will go somewhere else.”

Pricing has to enter the equation somewhere, but Power Drywall doesn’t let it take priority. In fact, Semenov says that price places third or fourth on their list. Rather, the team is far more concerned with getting the job done right.

“We don’t always the lowest bid,” says Semenov, “but we get chosen or recommended because of our performance on previous projects. Quite often we have developers who request us by name to be a sub-trade for their project. They approach the general contractor and ask them to negotiate with us.” Timeliness and quality are hallmarks of Power’s projects. Led by an experienced supervisory and management group, the entire Power Drywall team can point with pride to an impressive history of successful projects and satisfied repeat customers.

Speaking of team, Power Drywall maintains the family atmosphere, even though the two original family members have retired and semi-retired respectively. “The company is a tight-knit team,” says Semenov. “It really has a cohesive culture that promotes mutual respect and appreciation for teamwork.”

Combining a good team, quality work, dedicated service and diligence allows Power Drywall the ability to work on high-profile jobs. If you ask Semenov which projects the company is proudest of, he will tell you that it’s hard to pick just one. “We have quite a few!” he beams. Their projects vary from the Starlight Casino, to Eaton’s Pacific Centre, to the B.C. Institute of Technology Aerospace Campus, to the Bayshore E&F residential towers. “It’s hard to say,” Semenov laughs. “We take pride in all of them and there are lots that have left a mark on the Vancouver skyline.”

As far as safety is concerned, Power Drywall has been industry leaders in their sub-trade. Their corporate safety program has been updated and improved over the past years on continuous bases through education and reviews. “We have a fulltime corporate safety officer who visits all the sites to review their compliance with the worksite procedures,” Semenov maintains. “If there has been breach in regulations, we have an internal system of carrying out disciplinary action. There are also rewards for excellence in site safety.”

“We have also taken the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) hazardous materials part and incorporated it into our training program,” he adds. “In safety performance, we have a great record. We have taken it so seriously that Power Drywall has gained the Health and Safety Certificate of Recognition (COR) in 2007.”

Power Drywall even goes a step further to ensure the products they use are manufactured in a safe environment. “In British Columbia, we have a situation where some gypsum board sent from China was determined to produce poisonous gases,” explains Semenov. “Fortunately, we have a strict policy of using North American-made products. As soon as this issue came to the surface, our customers came to us and asked about their own buildings. They were assured that our products are manufactured by recognised companies in Canada and the United States.”

The management of Power Drywall will continue working diligently to eliminate or minimize accidents for all employees through all available programs and training.

Next generation
Power Drywall is looking forward to the big 3-0, next year. It’s an important anniversary for them, and everyone is excited. Beyond that, Semenov says they are looking forward to bringing in new, young blood in the next few years.

“As both owners retire, Power Drywall is passing the torch to their daughter and son-in-law, as well as two non-family members that have been with the company since their internship,” he says. “The share structure within the company will be transferred to them and we will officially retire. The company has had healthy growth and we believe the next generation will continue to foster that. We also hope Power Drywall continues to be a service-based company that caters to our long-standing customers.”

If the management has taught their successors anything—which they clearly have—there is no doubt that Power Drywall will have a long and vibrant future.

Major components of our safety program:
- Employee education and training
- Site Orientation
- Safe practices and procedures
- Regular toolbox safety meetings
- Monthly corporate safety meetings