Nekison Engineering & Contracting Ltd.: Bringing Quality Engineering and Construction Worldwide

Nekison Engineering & Contracting Ltd. (NEC) is a truly global company, serving Canada’s interests across the world. Based out of Etobicoke, Toronto, NEC was started by Ramesh Jain in 1980 as an engineering company that performed local projects around Ontario. Now, the business has expanded to 120 employees, generating $62 million in annual revenue, and its work can be seen as far away as in the Canadian embassies in India, China and Tanzania.

What sets this business apart is not just the varied amount of services it performs, but also the nuanced approach NEC takes to every project. The company began as and remains a family-run enterprise (Ramesh Jain is joined by Asha Jain in the office), and maintains a commitment to personalized service and attention to detail.

“We are engineers who have chosen to be contractors,” Ramesh, serving now as president, says. “So that means we build from an end-point user's point of view, helping us to understand the complete process better. As engineers we understand the system, then start building instead of just copying from a drawing then waiting for something bad to happen.” It’s this mastery of the entire spectrum of systems integration that has made NEC a global force.

Five Divisions of Quality Engineering and Contracting

NEC provides all phases of mechanical contracting for general contractors and consultants, delivering quality plumbing, heating, ventilation, air conditioning, fire protection and specialty piping systems. To do this NEC maintains five main divisions: construction management, design-build, tenant services, green building and public infrastructure. These comprehensive services are possible because the firm employs architects, engineers, contractors, estimators and scheduling experts, all of whom have experience working for nearly every type of building or infrastructure project. Additionally, NEC calls upon trusted subcontractors including a sheet metal shop facility, sprinkler shop, underground, excavating equipment, insulation contractor, HVAC, controls and geothermal installation.

NEC has superior construction management skills because of the diversity of knowledge it has on staff. Its services in this sector includes on-site supervision/coordination, change order analysis, schedule review, contract negotiation, document control and claims prevention, as well as a program and project management sector that monitors the budget and the feasibility of construction.

The design-build sector of NEC has been a mainstay of the business for nearly its entire run. The firm knows a lot of other companies claim to have superior design-build, but NEC puts its faith in only the best team leaders. In addition, NEC does extensive tenant services. This includes remodeling, renovating and retrofitting any structure to accommodate new mechanical systems. The key to tenant services for the firm is communication. The firm prides itself in being in touch with the client's needs at every point of the project and being ready to handle the unexpected.

One of the company’s biggest growing sectors is the work it does for public infrastructure. NEC addresses all aspects of mechanical contracting in public infrastructure projects, including energy control management, ventilation systems, electrical, plumbing, waste and water treatment and water management. NEC takes great strides to maintain the existing infrastructure of Ontario and have adopted the P3 vision [People, Prosperity, and the Planet] as a result. By taking this humanitarian approach to construction, NEC is helping local economies and the environment in addition to its own business

It is perhaps in the environment where NEC has become a true leader in the construction industry. The company is constantly looking to be on the forefront of new avenues of construction, especially when it has an effect on something greater than revenue. That’s why NEC has become so involved with green building. The firm does everything from simple ideas, like surrounding buildings with green space to improve oxygen, to implementing complex sustainable energy systems for reducing green house emissions. The firm has several LEED-certified projects to show for this commitment.

Shoring Up Infrastructure

There are few building types where NEC has not applied its capabilities, though the firm is most active on larger complexes. “Our area of work is mostly institutional, that means educational, schools and universities; in addition we do transportation maintenance and garages, high-rise towers, recreation facilities, hospitals, long-term care, and highly secured institutions like Canadian embassies overseas,” recounts Ramesh. In addition NEC does work for correctional and police services, as well as community and recreational centres.

“We just finished the Niagara Falls Convention Centre, which was a design-build project, as well as the Go Transit maintenance building, garage, and bus storage for doubledecker buses,” says Ramesh. NEC also just finished work on a new Canada Post building on Commercial Street in Toronto , which earned a LEED-certified Gold rating.

NEC has a bright future and a number of interesting projects lined up, including aquatic centres, performing arts centres and hospitals. However, the company has started to see some difficulties as a result of the poor economy in the United States. “Probably one of the biggest challenges we face is the increase in the cost of oil, and the cost of materials shipped from the U.S. We get a lot of supplies from the states and shipment has slowed,” Ramesh says.

However, the company hasn’t survived this long without being able to handle fluctuations in the prices of goods. Ramesh is not worried about current woes. “We have come so far in the 32 years since I started the company,” he explains “We’re resilient, and just need to stay on the same path that helped get us here.”

Dedicated to quality, responsiveness, attentive management and the implementation of innovative technologies, Nekison Engineering & Contracting Ltd. maintains a proven track record in expertly planned construction services.