DBD Construction’s philosophy is simple: fully understand each client’s unique needs and communicate with full transparency to deliver a superior product.
Founded in 2011 by Managing Director Noah Whyte, DBD has become one of the fastest growing commercial contracting companies in Canada. With roots as a professional hockey player, Noah Whyte carries the values he acquired on the ice, to the boardroom when managing DBD and working with clients.
“I’m a huge believer in teamwork. Not only among our management team and staff at DBD, but also in terms of becoming a part of our client’s trusted team.By taking on a team oriented mindset, we will execute an outstanding project, according to the game plan and with superior communication along the way,” says Whyte. This spirit of teamwork and a winning mentality is also evident among DBD’s management team.
“I joined DBD as a partner four years ago. It’s been exciting to be a part of the company’s exceptional growth. I think the competitive spirit of our team motivates us to go the extra mile for our clients,” adds Brian Milne, Lead Estimator and Project Manager, “Like most people, Noah loves to win but what really separates him from the rest is that he hates to lose, and so he takes the success of every project personally. You now see that engrained in our entire team’s culture.”
These values and a big vision have allowed Noah to grow DBD from a company performing commercial renovation projects to new-build commercial, institutional, multifamily and high-end residential projects. Based in Calgary, their projects currently span throughout all of the major markets across Western Canada, with near-term plans for expansion into Ontario and Eastern Canada.
Some of DBD’s notable projects span across multiple industries and include the bar Von Der Fels, a new and exciting wine bar with a mix of old and new design in architecture, the Rumble Boxing Studio; new-build of a boutique boxing-themed fitness studio on 17th avenue in Calgary, slated for opening in the fall of 2016. Also in DBD’s portfolio is a 20,000 square foot childcare facilityowned and operated by Brightpath for Kids, which was completed in March 2016. DBD is also building several retail and franchise restaurants concepts for organizations such as the MTY Group, which owns Mucho Burrito, Thai Express, Jugo Juice and more; as well as 98Foodco who is expanding rapidly and reinventing fast food with brands such as Chachi’s and Dirtbelly.
DBD Construction employs a comprehensive management system that tracks the progress at every stage of a project to ensure all milestones are met.
“We subscribe to the critical path method which forces us to map out the entire project ahead of time so we don’t miss any critical and non-critical items that could otherwise impact our schedule,” says Whyte. DBD Construction recognizes the need for a high level of communication amongst the team. “Our focus is on communicating consistently and concisely with all key stakeholders throughout all phases of a project,” he adds.
As Integrity forms the cornerstone of the company, DBD approaches every project with this principal in mind. “We really focus on developing a true partnership with our clients,” says Kirk DeBay, Site Supervisor for DBD. “Most of our continued business and projects are acquired through these long-standing customer relationships. We don’t treat it like a business transaction; rather, we cultivate our business relationships.”
What sets DBD apart in the construction industry is their focus on transparency and communication. “There are a lot of construction companies that operate under the premise that they can ‘win’ the job at a low price and then find ways to bill for extras along the way to recoup some profit. We don’t subscribe to that model. Instead, we work to quote our clients a fair, educated price for their project so they have more transparency over the true costs and can budget appropriately,” says Shane Melanson, Director of Business Development at DBD Construction.
“Our clients can also expect that we will do whatever it takes to stick to the project schedule, which means it’s not surprising to find our employees working evenings or weekends to stay ahead of a job,” says Jan van de Fliert, Project Manager for DBD. With several retail and restaurant projects on the go, DBD understands their clients’, the business owners’, point of view. Every day that a project runs late is a day that they can’t open for business and generate revenue. “We really go the extra mile to honour their planned opening dates and push to get them open sooner because we know this is of utmost importance. We aim to be a true partner in their success story,” says Darren Rackett, Project Supervisor.
DBD’s experienced team ensures projects receive a value engineering approach to help their clients meet their budget and schedule, without compromising quality or the overall look and feel of the build. This often requires the collaboration of their management team and key subcontractors to bring forth innovative ideas and solutions to project challenges. “Unlike many commercial contractors, we don’t look at ‘unforeseen’ issues as an opportunity to pass on inflated extras to our clients. Instead, we take this as an opportunity to add value and find solutions that maintain the integrity of their project plan and budget,” says Michael Collins, DBD Project Manager.
DBD is seeing full turn-key projects grow in popularity; especially in the retail, office and restaurant segments. “It takes trust, and more clients are switching from just having us do the construction work, to engaging us at the start to do everything from design and permits to supply and install of equipment and furniture typically not included in traditional construction agreements,” says Noah. “DBD started focusing on this a couple years ago to help better manage the full schedule of a project, but it also allowed their clients to focus more on opening their restaurant and less on the construction process. Now it also helps with our clients securing financing as the bank sees just one complete contract instead of a half dozen or dozen bills from different vendors.”
Future plans for DBD involve strategic acquisitions of smaller companies and new partnerships which will allow them to vertically integrate and expand into new revenue streams. Key partnerships include William & Stiles; a new custom concrete design and fabrication studio allowing DBD Construction to bring to market an unprecedented custom concrete tile and panel product. This new venture is already attracting enormous attention from top architects and interior designers in Canada. DBD also has their sight set on construction development by adding staff and creating new business partnerships to bring DBD into the commercial, multi-family and development business.
In the fall of 2016, DBD plans on doubling their office and warehouse space in response to theirconstant high rate of growth as they acquire more diverse and larger projects while building their presence across Canada.
While the company has grown to a team of 50 employees and counting, as a relatively young company, DBD did not have a lot of resources to devote to any formal marketing or business development campaigns. Most of their business has grown from word of mouth and building relationships.
“We have a great team of employees at DBD that work and play together. We get along at the office and hang out with each other outside of work as well,” says Cory Swain, Project Supervisor, “I think our clients find it appealing to see that culture and energy with our team.” “We also focus on retaining employees who share the same vision for the company and demonstrate their loyalty,” says Noah. Essentially, DBD aims for excellence in project execution every time so that they deliver projects that are on time and on budget. Since they are able to deliver this consistently, this segment of their customer base is growing rapidly and DBD is being invited to be on the preferred bidder list for many national and international clients.
In an unpredictable and ever-changing industry, the knowledge and experience DBD’s team brings, helps them to take a value-added approach for their clients by advising them on superior products and approaches for their design.
“Everybody who joins the team knows what they are getting into upfront,” says Carrie Whyte, co-founder. “They know we are a growing company and understand that there can be a huge upside to them assisting in our growth. For our clients the commitment to excellence comes from the entire team embracing DBD and taking pride in our joint success.”
DBD Construction is a great example of Canadian entrepreneurship and business growth in a tough market. The company is supported by a management team that is equally knowledgeable in business, as they are in construction. This mindset has helped DBD deliver superior results for their growing list of clients.