Bruce was born in Thunder Bay, Ontario, and grew up in the midst of the logging industry. At early age Bruce’s entrepreneurial skills were already evident; he rented a neighbor's horse and took on a logging contract with Great Lakes Forest Products Ltd. Subsequently, Bruce worked at the Caterpillar dealer in product support.Bruce then took on the challenge of superintendent at the head office of Canadian Longyear in North Bay, Ontario. Canadian Longyear is a mining and drilling equipment producer. In this position, he was responsible for mobilizing entire drilling operations to destinations as far away as the Northwest Territories and South Africa. Bruce’s abilities were recognized when the corporation offered him the control of an entire expansion program in Australia. However, Bruce declined the position and moved to Thunder Bay, where he held a number of positions in the logging and construction industries.
The forerunner to Hood Logging Equipment, Bruce Hynnes Contracting was formed in June, 1982. Bruce purchased a one-man slasher and began to contract out his logging services to companies like Kimberly-Clark, Great West Timber and Buchanan Forest Products. In 1984, a major opportunity arose – Bruce was asked by Kimberly-Clark to provide 6 slashers to their operations. He borrowed the money and purchased these units from Hood Equipment, Iron River, Wisconsin, and leased them to owner/operators for Kimberly-Clark. He operated a parts and service department out of his garage, and Hood Logging Equipment Canada Incorporated was born.
The manufacturer, Hood Equipment, was founded 30 years ago by John Hood, a true entrepreneur! John started building log loaders with $50, a dream, and a friendly banker who believed in John’s knowledge of the industry, his stamina, and his work ethic. Today, Hood Equipment is one of the largest manufacturers of hydraulic log loaders in the United States.
"Because of this, we recently outsold all competitors within our territory by combining the Model 210LXTL excavator (or the new 240LXTL) with a Denharco DT4150 stroke delimber. We are also the leaders in the marketplace with harvesting equipment, combining Link-Belt carriers with processing heads, both fixed-style or dangle-style heads."
Based heavily on input from successful working loggers, their engineers design and build equipment with job-tested components of their own manufacture, and those of carefully selected suppliers from all over the world. The Link-Belt line of excavators is design-engineered with power, speed, and maneuverability and operator comfort for high production shifts. Combined with their trademark walk-through maintenance access, simple plumbing and handy component locations for minimized downtime, Link-Belt has been built the way loggers told them to build them. If the machine has Link-Belt's name on it, it’s been built to work day in, and day out.
A second location in Swan River, Manitoba, opened in 1995, and supplies clients in northern Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta.
Hood Logging has ambitious plans to establish additional stores in the future. Good word travels fast, and Hynnes believes that the testimonials of existing customers are his best selling tool.
"If a potential customer comes into Hood equipment and is apprehensive, we just have them call one of our customers directly," says Hynnes. "When they hear first-hand how our products are accommodating their needs, it’s usually all the assurance they need." Hood services what they sale.
Of course, supplying excellent machinery is only part of the story. "Competitive prices, on-site demonstrations, a full supply of inventory, and responsive service calls anytime or anywhere – that’s what we believe in," says Hynnes. And when Bruce Hynnes says he is there for his customers 24 hours a day, he means it. Parts personnel can be reached at any time – day or night – their home phone numbers are posted on the front door of the dealership. Even Hynnes’ own phone number appears on the Hood Logging ad in the yellow pages!
Destinations have taken Hood Logging Equipment beyond the forestry segment, with the construction market now enjoying 60% of their business. Mining and the related explorations field have shown significant growth as well.
In 2007 Hood Equipment were successful in partnering with the third-largest manufacturer of equipment in the world, TEREX, and sales of TEREX rock trucks and backhoe loaders took off! Today HOOD RENTS provides rock truck rentals to customers from Southern Ontario to Northern Saskatchewan and are currently looking to expand their rental business nationally - even internationally!
The company lists six family members among the 30 full-time employees.