Capital business closing its doors
A Charlottetown woodwork company that enjoyed rapid growth between 2002 and 2006 has come to a crashing halt.
A double whammy of tough economic times combined with a high Canadian dollar (almost all business was exporting product to the United States) has spelled the end of Cabinet-master Architectural Woodwork Ltd., says company president Gordie Kirkpatrick.
“For all intense and purposes, we will be done next week,’’ Kirkpatrick told The Guardian Friday. “ We are pretty disappointed.’’ Cabinet-master was founded in 1980 as a division of Pre-built Structures Ltd., starting out as a small kitchen cabinet company.
Kirkpatrick purchased the company in February 2002 and moved the following year to the old Coca Cola bottling plant on Kensington Road in Charlottetown.
Expansions included a second plant on Jordan Crescent in 2005 and a 2,250 square metre plant in Montague in 2006 as Kirkpatrick grew the business into a premier commercial millwork manufacturer, shipping to clients such as Marriott International and the U.S. State Department in Barbados.
He says the company reached peak employment in 2006 at about 105, up from 10 employees at the time Kirkpatrick acquired the business.
However, Cabinet-master was forced to close the Montague plant one year ago and entered 2009 with just 50 employees.
“ We are down to less than 20 (now) and next week there will be none,’’ he said.
The remaining employees are finishing up a final contract.
Kirkpatrick says a private investor is willing to fund a restructuring of the operation but the province is not willing to sell the building to the investor for a price Kirkpatrick describes as “market value given the current state of the economy.’’
Charlottetown woodwork company Cabinetmaster is closing.