Atlas Copco is celebrating its 70th anniversary in Canada in 2019. Throughout the year, the company is commemorating this milestone with employees, customers, distributors and other stakeholders, while hosting several activities and events.
In 1949, George Blomdal, a Norwegian Engineer, was dispatched to Canada to test the mining market’s reaction to a new type of Swedish designed rock drill and a new drilling method; this drill could be operated by one man instead of two.
Blomdal targeted Northern Ontario to sell it due to the gold mining industry. He received a call from a prospect wanting to meet while he was in Kirkland Lake and due to his excitement (and not realizing it was -34°C) left without his hat and coat. Blomdal reached his final destination and had one of his ears frozen. He continued on with his sales pitch while one of the prospect’s men massaged the ear. Following this, the first sale was made and the Swedish Method made its way to Canada.
On May 9, 1949, Canadian Copco Ltd. was born and headquartered in Kirkland Lake. Canada was the first country in the Americas to open an Atlas Copco office and the eighth international office established.