Canadian Manufacturer Seeks Growth in Europe

Corrosion Block, a manufacturer of an anti-corrosion compound developed for marine, RV and industrial applications has recently expanded its distribution into Europe.

According Lise Pearson, vice-president of Lear Chemical Research Corp., the parent company of Corrosion Block based in Mississauga, ON, many aftermarket businesses in the marine industry have not been as affected as those that are selling to OEMs. Pearson explained that there has been increased growth for many marine businesses and many should look beyond their immediate market and find other countries to distribute their product(s).

“Within the industry, unless you are growing and expanding, you're stagnating. With so many using the water worldwide, we decided to go into Europe. For us to grow we needed to start focusing on other countries,” said Pearson.

Corrosion Block is currently sold at several retail centres across North America, England and most recently, France, Italy and potentially Spain, which was discussed at MAATS last week in Orlando, FL.

“The aftermarket hasn't been hit as hard as those that are selling to the OEM market,” says Pearson. “For us, it's not only in the pleasure boating market, but also the fishing and even the mega yacht markets that can use our product.”

Among a few of the obstacles to import into Europe, Corrosion Block had to tri-lingualize its packaging and adjust to the different ways of doing business in that market. And while the Internet is one of the means that has opened up that market in recent years, many of the European importing laws have also been changed. For instance, the introduction of REACH in June 2007, a new European Community Regulation on chemicals and their safe use, deals with the Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and restriction of Chemical substances into Europe.

“Europe now has the REACH program and if you go into Europe, you have to follow their rules and regulations. That market is also very competitive among the businesses there.”