Matthew Tombs: Expanding Home Railing Operations from Manitoba to Ottawa

When Matthew Tombs started working at a local Winnipeg railing company in 2007, being young, he had no idea of the far reach of this opportunity. He started by filling in the gaps of what the company needed to make it more successful. Now he owns two thriving railing companies; Winnipeg Deck and Rail and Ottawa Deck and Rail.

During his starting years, Matt became increasingly passionate about his industry. The aluminum railing business was booming due to rust issues arising in many iron railing systems. That meant a lot of railing needed to be replaced, and Matt was the perfect person to do it. He researched suppliers to get the best quality for the lowest price. He made sure the warehouse was stocked and properly organized so that people could get their railing installed in the shortest time possible. Matt also networked with builders like Qualico Homes to bring in the safer alternative to wrought iron: powder-coated aluminum that comes with a lifetime guarantee.

Soon after, it became necessary to expand the railing team. Mike Palapuz, who had just moved from the Philippines, was their first official installer. He’d do a couple railing projects a week and was looking for more work. Matt networked with additional builders and before he knew it, he was working with a majority of the top high volume builders in Winnipeg.

He went from managing a few projects a week, up to 200 in a very short time. Many businesses struggle with a sudden influx of sales, but not Matt’s. Each time order volume increased, Matt and his team found out how to become more efficient. Each time this happened, one of Mike’s brothers would help out, until all three of his brothers - Rene, Darwin, and Rogel - were all members of the team. Under his guidance, Matt brought the company’s installation times from an average of six weeks down to a week, meaning people’s railings were being installed much quicker.

Now Matt hopes to expand operations in Ottawa. He’s diligently researching marketing, and search engine optimization to make that dream into a reality. One method of expanding is by cooperating with other professionals. Matt is interested in collaborating with real estate agents, insurance brokers, home builders, and contractors, to see how he can continue to serve the public better. His company is proud to support Habitat for Humanity and Special Olympics Canada.