From a Dream to Reality: Al Taylor's Journey with Taylor Moving & Storage - A Canadian Saga of Triumph and Endless Opportunity! (Part 2)
In honor of Alan Taylor's induction into the Burlington Hall of Fame, scheduled for October 19th, 2023, at the Burlington Convention Center, we're sharing his story of building Taylor Moving & Storage. This quintessential Canadian success story showcases the embodiment of the Canadian Dream. This article is the second part of a three-part series highlighting Al's career and his journey in creating a company that's integral to Burlington.
The 70s began, and Taylor Moving was flourishing. The once modest moving company was ripe for expansion against the backdrop of an era punctuated by technological and scientific breakthroughs.
For Al Taylor and his team, this decade was characterized by monumental growth. They acquired several large corporate accounts, the most notable being Abitti, a company based in Sault St. Marie when relocating to Mississauga, Ontario. Al commented, “This account was our first significant achievement and it motivated our team for success throughout the 70s.” This account alone necessitated 90 - 100 moves to the Greater Toronto Area, along with their research and development equipment, ensuring a steady revenue stream for the company. As the years rolled on, corporate accounts kept coming.
By the early 70s, corporate business constituted 70% of the firm's revenue, with the remaining 30% stemming from the local market. Key accounts from this era included the Royal Bank of Canada, the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, and Bell Canada. Yet, Al was not satisfied. He envisioned greater heights for his company, so he applied for x-license privileges, broadening their operations into Quebec, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick and becoming a certified mover for each province.
His move was timely. Quebec's secessionist movement led to an exodus of companies deterred by the political climate. Al's team attracted and secured several major accounts, such as Ciba Geigy and Baiting, both pharmaceutical firms. Reflecting on this era, Al mused, “I'm deeply proud of our team. Their dedication and perseverance were remarkable. Without them, our level of success would have been unattainable.”
Meanwhile, Burlington experienced significant suburban growth. The city adapted rapidly to its burgeoning needs, enhancing amenities, parks, and infrastructure, such as the Burlington Mall, which opened in 1968. The Burlington Art Centre, established in 1978, and the city's official status transition from a town to a city in 1974, further showcased its progress.
By 1972, recognizing the increasing business activity in Mississauga, Al decided to establish a second operational center there, explaining, “With the surge in local activity, it was evident that we needed a more comprehensive presence.”
The remainder of the 70s saw consistent growth. Always seeking further progress, Al set his sights on America. After a prolonged legal battle and several committee appearances, he secured the ICC rights, granting Taylor access to the entire mainlan
However, 1986 brought widespread deregulation, transforming the transportation industry. With no licensing required, competition surged. Companies, including Taylor, were forced to cut prices. Al recalled, “It was a turbulent period. Many firms we competed with, but also respected, vanished.” The moving industry landscape shifted drastically from around 200 movers to approximately 25. But Taylor, under Al's leadership, carved a niche, especially among corporate clients, and thrived.
Changes weren't limited to regulation. As women entered the workforce in greater numbers, business dynamics evolved. Recollecting his dealings with Kimberly Clark from P&G, Al noted her professionalism, efficiency, and kindness. The increasing involvement of women reshaped the business landscape for the better.
For Burlington, the 1980s symbolized sustained growth, infrastructural improvements, and community events like the Sound of Music Festival. By the 90s, Alan Taylor's unwavering commitment to excellence had firmly established Taylor Moving & Storage as a premier name in Canadian and US moving services. Alan's story wasn't just about corporate success; it centered on people, relationships, and community. Reflecting on his journey, one theme remains paramount – resilience. Through evolving landscapes, industry shifts, and challenges, Al's resilience and adaptability stood out.
Today, as we commemorate his Burlington Hall of Fame induction, we celebrate not just a successful entrepreneur but a visionary, a pioneer, and the embodiment of the Canadian Dream. Alan Taylor's tale reminds us that with determination, adaptability, and a focus on people, anything is achievable.
In Al's words, “It's not about where you start; it's about where you're going and who you bring with you.” And throughout every challenge and success, Al journeyed with his team, his community, and an entire nation.
Without a doubt, Taylor Moving's history started with Al Taylor but continued on with his sons, Russ and Rick. Join us next month for the next phase of Taylor's story continuing from the 90s to the modern-day. The next part of the story includes the start of Russ and Rick's careers within the business and Al Taylor's commitment to further developing Taylor Moving & Storage.
Please join us for Al Taylor's induction to the Burlington Entrepreneurial Hall of Fame on October 19th, 2023, at the Burlington Convention Center. The event starts at 5:30 and we would love to have everyone attend. Register for the event here.
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