Vidir Goes Vertical: Award-winning company manufactures solutions to storage challenges
Vidir Solutions featured in The Winnipeg Free Press.
Vidir Solutions vertical lift modules (VLMs) and carousels can now be found in more than 45 countries and at some of the biggest companies in the world, including Amazon, Disney, Herbalife, Home Depot, Kohl’s, SpaceX, Tesla, Vale and Walmart ‐ and even at the White House.
Vidir Solutions’ innovative inventory management machines are in every Home Depot, Walmart and major auto manufacturer in North America and they were voted one of 30 Top Employers in Manitoba for 2022.
Or perhaps you’ve seen a bicycle merchandising system with dozens of bikes on display from floor to ceiling and wondered “How do they get those down?”
In 1976, Willie Dueck planted the roots of Vidir Solutions. The Arborg agriculturist realized that farmers were losing time in their fields due to issues with broken-down machinery and no one locally who could fix it. Around that time, there was also an influx of Bolivian immigrants settling in the area, some of whom where skilled machinists. So Dueck opened a machine shop providing both employment and a high-demand service for his community.
Fast-forward a few years and Dueck’s sons, running a hardware store, came to their father with the question of how to make storing, displaying and accessing flooring materials safer and more efficient.
“He came up with the first carousel, which was essentially an automated sort of shelving unit that would allow all the rolls to be on a carousel where you can see all of the different ones. You could press buttons to get the ones you wanted down to waist height,” explains Carissa Rempel, talent acquisition and public relations specialist for Vidir Solutions.
“It was safer. It eliminated forklifts and ladders. It allowed for better viewing of all of the merchandise.”
Within months, Beaver Lumber purchased Dueck’s innovative solution for use in their stores. To keep pace with demand, Vidir Solutions’ automated material handling was born.
Vidir Solutions vertical lift modules (VLMs) and carousels can now be found in more than 45 countries and at some of the biggest companies in the world, including Amazon, Disney, Herbalife, Home Depot, Kohl’s, SpaceX, Tesla, Vale and Walmart — and even at the White House.
Vidir Solutions designs products for use in just about every industry, including manufacturing, warehousing, automotive and aviation. The company’s products can also be found in health care, government, construction, retail and display, energy, printing and converting.
Every client is assigned a customer care concierge who will walk them through the process of finding the perfect solution to maximize their unique space, whether it be an existing product in Vidir’s lineup or a custom-designed solution.
“We do a lot of customized solutions,” Rempel explains. “We do everything in-house, all the way from selling through design and production — right from raw steel through installing and servicing.”
The importance of customer care is just one example of Vidir’s commitment to community.
“We really want people to feel like they’re not just a number, that they genuinely matter,” Rempel adds.
Another way Vidir lives this commitment is the deliberate selection of rural communities for their locations.
“They’ve always chosen rural locations just outside of larger centres on purpose for two reasons. The first one is the impact that the company can have in smaller locations — being able to donate to a lot of programs, offer volunteer hours, things that maybe otherwise wouldn’t be able to run in those communities,” Rempel explains.
“But the second piece is also for the employees and for the quality of life that it allows them — being able to work at a company with a global reach and have world-class careers but not necessarily have to live in a city where you have to fight traffic or pollution or worry about safety.”
Vidir recently received an export award from Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, and the future looks bright. Mario Fontes, director of sales and marketing for Vidir Solutions, aspires to have Vidir become one of the largest original equipment manufacturers of the VLM material handling solution in North America in the next five years.
“Growth is coming from all industries,” Fontes says.
“The most exciting is from retail as we broaden our customer base and our solutions for machines that serve the growing e-commerce business as well as the growing demand for VLM in the manufacturing, distribution and mining sectors.”