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Irving Shipbuilding Inc. and ACADA Announce Partnership for the First Cohort of ACADA’s MACH Atlantic Program

Published: May 2, 2023

Today, at the Defence Trends Symposium in Moncton, Irving Shipbuilding Inc. (ISI) and the Atlantic Canada Aerospace and Defence Association (ACADA) announced a partnership that will bring the internationally recognized MACH program to support small businesses in the marine defence sector in Atlantic Canada. The intent of the MACH Atlantic program is to improve productivity, competitiveness, and growth in the region.

In ACADA’s first MACH Atlantic Cohort, ISI has partnered with three Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship suppliers: ABCO Industries Inc. and MacKinnon and Olding Ltd. of Nova Scotia and Glamox Canada Inc. of Newfoundland and Labrador. As a Sponsor, ISI will invest mentoring hours to help these local businesses learn and improve through the MACH methodology.

MACH is a unique program that is administered regionally but acknowledged globally by Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) and defence Primes. The MACH framework, developed by Aéro Montréal, has been running for 12 years with more than 70 participant companies reporting an average productivity improvement between 24 per cent and 46 per cent.

ACADA partnered with Aéro Montréal to develop MACH Atlantic and facilitate opportunities for manufacturers and maintenance repair organizations in Aerospace and Defence to grow, diversify, and excel in Atlantic Canada.

MACH Atlantic is a progressive maturity model of continuous improvement. There are five levels in the path to becoming a world-class Aerospace and Defence supplier:

• MACH 1 – Understanding

• MACH 2 – Committing

• MACH 3 – Implementing

• MACH 4 – Achieving

• MACH 5 – Enforcing

“Irving Shipbuilding is committed to supporting the continued growth of our Atlantic Canadian suppliers through a proven and recognized program,” said Lee Fromson, Vice President Supply Chain & Quality, Irving Shipbuilding. “ACADA has worked hard to adapt this world-class program for its member suppliers. As we work to build and deliver the largest and most complex ships to the Canadian Navy, we recognize the importance of continuous improvement in the coast- to coast- to coast supply chain that supports Ships for Canada. MACH Atlantic builds current capability and future opportunities for small – 2 –

and medium enterprises here at home. We look forward to working with other regional Canadian defence associations in expanding this program.”

CLICK HERE to learn more about ISI’s commitment to Canada’s supply chain.

“Having a world-class organization like Irving Shipbuilding join the MACH Atlantic program is a great example of the collaboration and innovation that can be found right here in Atlantic Canada,” said Victoria Belbin, CEO, ACADA. “We brought MACH Atlantic to the region because we saw an opportunity to strengthen SMEs to become more strategically aligned and ready for long-term opportunities within the supply chain. We are committed to partnering with SMEs and their mentors for continued competitive evolution and success in national and global markets.”

CLICK HERE to learn more about MACH Atlantic, including how to participate in future Cohorts.

The three partner organizations have a long history of economic contribution and innovation in the region. ABCO Industries Inc. was established in 1947 and has 80 employees. Glamox Canada was established in 1991 and has 32 employees. MacKinnon and Olding Ltd. was established in 1985 and has 250 employees.

“ABCO Industries is pleased to be considered for the MACH Atlantic Supply Chain Excellence program, as we look to position ourselves in the supply chain of major suppliers to the aerospace and defence sectors in Canada,” said Jason Huskilson, Vice President of Sales, ABCO Industries. “For over 75 years, ABCO has been an original equipment supplier of industrial scale food processing machinery in 40+ countries, various marine solutions within North America, and other custom engineered, fully welded machinery to support local industry. This diverse offering has allowed ABCO to maintain a dynamic method of supply chain management, keeping projects on time while maintaining the highest standard of safety and quality. Being accepted into the MACH Atlantic program holds potential for ABCO to continue to enhance our current supply chain systems, helping ABCO become a leader in procurement and quality control.”

“Glamox Canada recognizes the strategic importance of the MACH Atlantic initiatives, having operated a local manufacturing facility in Newfoundland and Labrador now for more than 32 Years,” said John O’Driscoll, Managing Director, Glamox Canada. “In a rapidly changing world, defence and security are more important than ever. Glamox has a long history in the maritime defence and security sector, where our complete and comprehensive product and lighting solutions have contributed greatly to global maritime security. We offer extensive lighting packages and solutions for all marine defence-related needs, making Glamox the perfect partner for complex applications, where extensive knowledge and experience of the applicable standards are required. This know-how is indispensable when equipping frigates, aircraft carriers, support vessels, patrol boats, and submarines with lighting solutions. We are very pleased to have the opportunity to build further on our relationship with our sponsor Irving Shipbuilding, the initiatives of the program support our strategic goals and also align with our core Values, Vision and Mission statements. We are very proud to be a part of the first Atlantic Canadian cohort.”

“MacKinnon and Olding recognizes the crucial role of collaborative and innovative initiatives in today’s global market,” said Scott McFarlane, Project Manager, MacKinnon and Olding. “We believe that strengthening the competitiveness of the supply chain structure is paramount to achieving sustained success. The MACH Atlantic initiative’s focus on building privileged collaborative links between – 3 –

customers and suppliers through the implementation of strategies and projects is a much-needed step to fill gaps regarding integration capabilities within the Atlantic region, supporting the development of a competitive world-class supply chain. We are thrilled to continually develop our long-standing relationship with our sponsor, Irving Shipbuilding, and to be a part of the first Atlantic Canadian cohort to achieve our shared goals of continued growth and success within the supply chain.”


About Irving Shipbuilding Inc.:

Irving Shipbuilding is Canada’s National Shipbuilder, selected in 2011 to build the new fleet of combat vessels to the Royal Canadian Navy. To date, three Arctic and Offshore Patrol ships (AOPS) have been delivered and a further three are underway. The company will also build two custom AOPS for the Canadian Coast Guard before commencing the larger Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC) Fleet. To date over $5.34 billion in investments have been made across Canada as part of the National Shipbuilding Strategy. Our team of 2300 shipbuilders proudly based in Halifax, NS includes the largest team of apprentices in Atlantic Canada.

About ACADA:

The Atlantic Canada Aerospace and Defence Association (ACADA) is a not-for-profit SME-focused organization representing the interests of the aerospace, defence, and security industries in Atlantic Canada.

ACADA works collaboratively with industry, provincial and federal government agencies, and other key stakeholders to facilitate strategic industry development on behalf of the region while promoting the Atlantic Canada brand locally, nationally, and internationally.

ACADA’s 170+ members are delivering products and services to the global marketplace in land, marine, and air/space domains for both commercial and defence applications.

It is ACADA’s goal to facilitate opportunities for our members to grow, diversify and excel. One significant initiative to propel that advancement is the adaptation and delivery of the MACH Atlantic program.

About MACH Atlantic:

The MACH initiative aims to strengthen the competitiveness of the supply chain structure. To this end, it focuses on privileged collaborative links between customers and suppliers through the implementation of strategies and projects. This initiative fills the gaps regarding the integration capabilities within the Atlantic region, thereby supporting the development of a competitive world-class supply chain.

This program was developed by Aéro Montréal’s Supply Chain Development Working Group which mobilized more than 100 industry professionals. The mission was to specifically address the issues and challenges of the supply chain, recognizing that effective management of the supply chain is a key – 4 –

competitive driver for companies in the sector. In December 2019, Aéro Montréal and the Atlantic Canada Aerospace and Defence Association (ACADA) signed a Collaboration Agreement to launch the MACH Initiative within Atlantic Canada.

ACADA is currently recruiting for Cohort One – our first cycle of the MACH Atlantic initiative – which aims to include 10 organizations. Other organizations already confirmed for Cohort One are MDS Coatings Technologies and Stelia North America Inc.

Visit for more information.

*French translation available upon request

Media Contacts: Amanda Eid

Provincial Director, NL

(709) 771-9887

Mary Keith

Vice President Communications

(506) 650-8209