Omni Industries builds on decades of successful expansion

Headquartered in Twickenham Park, Spanish Town, Omni Industries is a leading distributor of industrial, construction and thermoplastic products.

Building on a history of continued expansion, Omni Industries Limited continues to turn the wheel of innovation, seeking increased revenues and greater opportunities locally and throughout the region. As the first company to list on the Jamaica Stock Exchange this year, the thermoplastics and industrial products giant has remained busy over the decades, laying the foundation for significant future growth.

Founded in 1974 by the late Uwe Kumst, a German exporter from Hamburg, the company, after an initial wave of expansion in the late 1900s, has today become a leader in the industrial, construction and thermoplastics.

“Starting with plastic garden hoses, the company quickly expanded to manufacturing PVC conduit for electrical use and soon after began extruding a wide range of plastic water pipes. PVC,” said Managing Director Patrick Kumst in an overview of the company’s history.

After the arrival of Wilfried Bergmeier, a German plastic engineer, in 1984, the company’s expansion plans continued with the addition of an injection molding department and the start of manufacturing pipe fittings in PVC. A further strengthening of the management team, which saw the addition of marketing expert, now president, Von White about two years later, and Patrick Kumst in 1996, strengthened the efforts of the company to build an exceptional team that would build on the legacy started by the senior. Kumst.

“My father wanted to build something from nothing. His background was not in engineering but rather in business and distribution. It was his passion to become a manufacturer. So when he arrived in Jamaica at the age of 22, he started small with an extrusion machine under a mango tree, producing garden hoses. Over the years, demand for more products grew and the company expanded its offerings, moving into PVC electrical conduit and other products. And since then, we have continued to grow until we become one of the biggest players in the sector,” said the younger Kumst, while emphasizing that the company’s ultimate success was a result of its ability to expand into new areas and add new products.

Very proud of its acquisition of Thermo Plastics Limited in 2002, a company which was one of the largest manufacturers and distributors of plastic products in the Caribbean, Omni said following this acquisition that it has since been able to to improve its already thriving business in the field of PVC pipes and fittings. and domestic and industrial plastic products. This is as it becomes able to provide Jamaicans with more of its quality and competitively priced products and further expand its product distribution to other parts of the region.

“The acquisition of Thermo Plastics in 2001 was a pivotal moment, as it allowed us to enrich our range of quality products and services. Fast forward to our recent initial public offering (IPO), which was oversubscribed and closed early – it’s a true testament to the trust and support we’ve garnered from our community. These steps reflect the efforts of our entire team and the commitment we have to serving Jamaica and the wider region with excellence,” White said.

At 50 years old, the Twickenham Park-based company now generates revenue from three distinct market segments, with construction accounting for 51 per cent of sales; industrial packaging, 38 percent; and household goods, 11 percent. At the end of the first three months of this year, the company’s total revenue was $607 million.

With the company’s thermoplastics and industrial supplies operations now driven by a strong team of approximately 110 people, the company has continued over the past four years to overcome setbacks, becoming even more resilient as it continues its growth.

“Omni has a long history of resilience, surviving difficult times when many companies went bankrupt. This includes high interest rates in the fintech era, a major fire in 2013 that destroyed a major facility, and the recent global pandemic, all without laying off employees. We prioritize the well-being of our internal and external stakeholders, ensuring that everyone involved in the business is always well supported,” said Kumst.

The major manufacturer, at the dawn of the next half-century, is already very optimistic about its future prospects. Following the success of an oversubscribed IPO in mid-May, the company’s directors said they were very excited to begin the next stage of the journey, with a strong workforce and new shareholders to join. their sides.

Poised more than ever for significant growth, the company has actively undertaken a series of retooling activities with the aim of capitalizing on opportunities in the Caribbean as well as Central and South American markets. Having recently entered the Central American market, to which it now exports cases of beer to countries such as Panama, the company is also exploring other opportunities in higher-growth economies such as oil-rich Guyana. oil, as well as Barbados and Trinidad. This, while remaining obsessed with his plans to further increase his sources of income.

By rolling out a range of new products and investing in new machinery to increase its production capabilities, the company, Kumst said, aims to serve the local market and the Caribbean region with excellence.

“The company recently acquired three units of advanced energy-efficient production equipment and is in the process of acquiring three more. These new machines will allow Omni to expand its product offering both locally and for export markets. Additionally, the company is expanding its product range to include more plastic products such as bread trays, chairs and tables to meet the demands of the Jamaican market and beyond,” the Managing Director said.

The large manufacturer, which has also been instrumental in a number of commercial and state projects on the industrial side, has partnered over its half-century history with a number of developers and other major clients to provide materials for various projects. By maintaining a positive outlook for the local economy, with the business aided by new energy efficient machinery and an expanded product range, the directors are positioning it well to benefit from much improved financial performance. To this end, the company has set itself the goal of achieving annual growth of at least 10 percent over the next five years.

“We are a proud Jamaican company, deeply rooted in the development of the country. So, as Jamaica continues to develop, Omni has more opportunities to benefit from participating in future developments.

“We want to expand our current growth trajectory in several areas, and we will do so by using the proceeds from the IPO to upgrade existing machines, purchase new machines for expansion purposes and inject equity capital. additional turnover in the company. We are excited to begin the next stage of our journey,” said Kumst.

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