Year: 2021

Year: 2021

ARC Paints Smiles at My Father’s House

Residents of My Father’s House compound of the Mustard Seed Communities are in for a bright Christmas following ARC Manufacturing Limited’s donation of paint and supplies to refurbish four of the facility’s dorms. Making the presentation, Sherlette Holness, senior manager, Projects & Retail Sales (centre), was joined by Mustard Seed’s Camille Bromfield, senior supervisor (left), and Ezlyn Mckenzie, administrator (right) during the handover.

Published by The Jamaica Gleaner.

Time to Build!

Following record high building material prices due to lumber shortages in July 2020 and plywood shortages earlier this year, homeowners are being told that now is a good time to start building again as prices have started to normalise.

Managing director at Arc Manufacturing Deanall Barnes told the Jamaica Observer the market is now adequately supplied with building materials. In addition to that, he highlighted that prices have already started to trend downward which should make these items more affordable for the average Jamaican.

“There’s a slowdown in China which has made more steel available for export which is increasing global competition and dragging down steel prices.” Barnes revealed that steel prices are down 10 per cent, form-ply down 15 per cent and lumber products down 12 per cent.

With that said the building materials company is reporting that sales are up, in line with the construction boom. Last week the Planning Institute of Jamaica (PIOJ) reported that the construction industry continued its year-long growth trend with an uptick of 1.7 per cent for the July to September quarter.

Barnes said that based on research “there was a significant uptick [in construction] from Jamaicans in the diaspora.” He added that further discussions with financiers also revealed that there’s an increase in the demand for mortgage from persons in the diaspora.

“Those who did not have any form of property started looking to buy property in Jamaica and these property range in terms of prices from US$70,000 to as high as US$1.5 million. In addition to that, there are some persons who owned the land itself but there was no building on it, they started construction and when we had a discussion with the hardware owners they said there were persons who started and stopped and have now restarted.”

Barnes stressed that the major developments like high-rise apartments and road constructions do not impact his revenues as much as domestic construction. He described domestic construction as homeowners adding an additional room or retrofitting existing structures to accommodate the work from home lifestyle.

He said those activities, which constitute the core of the construction industry ,“has remained relatively healthy over the last 15 months.”

At the same time, he’s urging the Government to follow through on its commitment to increase the housing stock in Jamaica which will provide another added boost.

“We know to a large extent that the Government has not even achieved 30 per cent of its target to build 70,000 homes as yet. So we expect that the Government will push, through its agencies, whether the NHT (National Housing Trust) or the HAJ (Housing Agency of Jamaica), to try and get these numbers up and once the Government is firm on its path, then we are very confident that there will be a buoyancy in the industry despite the headwinds.”

At the same time, he is demanding that the Government find a way to remove red tape from the building approval process. He said removing red tape will provide a well-needed boost for construction workers who are left without an income while the approval process is being drawn out.

“There’s still an issue based on the discussions that we’ve had with some of the major developers in the country that the bureaucracy is still holding back the timeline in which projects are approved, and that lag in itself has caused negative impact on our industry.”

Another obstacle, he argued, is the Bank of Jamaica’s (BOJ) decision to increase its indicative monetary policy interest rate.

“The increase in interest rates by the BOJ although we understand it from the perspective of trying to manage inflation, there are some immediate deleterious consequences. Most, if not all, financial institutions are going to increase the rates charged to customers, so mortgage rates might go up as well as general loan rates so that can have a negative impact on the growth or continued boom.”

Nevertheless, he maintains that there’s hope on the horizon. “We are cautiously optimistic. There are some projects that have started which we expect to continue.”

Published by The Jamaica Observer.

ARC Employees Benefit from Defensive Driving Training

 As road fatalities continue to rise, ARC Manufacturing engaged Grennel’s Driving School to train a number of its transportation team members in defensive driving. 

The globally recognised National Safety Council’s Defensive Driving Course (NSC DDC) exposed drivers to numerous best-practise techniques, including defensive driving, preventative collision, pedestrian safety, hazard recognition, and vehicle maintenance.

The manufacturing company’s proactive approach to road safety will help its employees to anticipate driving errors of others, hazardous situations and support good decision-making strategies for safe driving.

ARC’s driver Steven Wright commented, “though I have been driving for almost two decades, the training highlighted areas I was never exposed to until now. It goes to show that you can never be too old to learn something new.”

In addition to its diverse portfolio of building materials, ISO 9001:2015 certified-ARC maintains its growth by supporting the development of staff at all levels throughout the business. This strengthens its talent pool and creates opportunities for workers to increase their earning potential.

Arc’s General Manager – Operations and Transportation Logistics, Yvonne Dacres said being able to recognise possible hazards and effectively respond promptly is a necessary skill that goes a far way in reducing road incidents.

“Ensuring the well-being of our team members and the communities we serve is a top priority, and that starts by creating a strong culture of safety,” she explained. “So with these fundamental defensive driving skills, our drivers can make better decisions in real-life situations to create a safer environment for everyone, both inside and outside the vehicle.”

ARC Manufacturing owns and operates one of the most modern lumber treatment facilities in the region. It employs over 300 people.

Published by Loop News.

Making a Way for Aspiring Dentist

Dupont Primary’s top PEP performer is on her way to achieving her dreams of becoming a dentist following ARC Manufacturing’s contribution to offset tuition and book expenses for the new academic year. Lakaica Greenland (centre) was joined by her mother, Jamila Persad (right), during the presentation from general manager – operations & transportation logistics, Yvonne Dacres (left).

Published by the Jamaica Gleaner.

Naedria Dyer – The Woman in Charge

GROWING up in Bull Savannah, St Elizabeth, Naedria Dyer’s goal was to become a teacher, but her life took an unexpected turn when she began her first job as a customer service representative at ARC Manufacturing Limited. The St Elizabeth native was determined to make her mark in the male-dominated field, which led to a career spanning roles in the commercial, credit and human resources arenas while in the big city.

Now the head of the company’s Montego Bay branch, Dyer’s journey to the top was no easy feat. She traded in her stilettos for steel-toed boots, and defied all odds to become a respected leader in the building materials industry.

Published by the Jamaica Observer.

ARC Strengthens its Commitment to the Environment

On the heels of World Environment Day, ARC Manufacturing Limited strengthened its commitment to the environment with a tree planting exercise at its Bell Road location. The initiative which was hosted under the theme ‘Plant a Tree for the Future,’ featured members of staff planting Durranta trees in line with its sustainable environmental business practices. 

Leading the charge, Managing Director Deanall Barnes explained that the company’s “adoption of green principles has benefitted all stakeholders.” 

“Sustainability has become a strategic and operational imperative at ARC and is a critical component in our quality management system. Not only has it impacted our livelihoods, but also the environment and surrounding communities in which we operate,” he stated.  

ARC also boasts one of the most modern Lumber Treatment facilities in the English-speaking Caribbean. This unique facility uses environmentally-friendly chemicals to preserve the life and dexterity of wood products, which reduces the effects of degradation caused by fungal decay.

The building materials company is on the verge of exploiting ways to enhance its conservation efforts and heighten its environmentally friendly culture.

ARC Empowers Women Through Period-Poverty Drive

ARC Manufacturing Limited championed the fight against period poverty in Jamaica recently. The building materials company hosted a month-long donation drive and awareness campaign that culminated in a female-empowerment session at the Wortley Home for Girls. Following the company’s presentation, Delores Bailey, manager (left), accepted packages of feminine hygiene products, clothing, shoes, and an assortment of non-perishable food items from ARC’s General Manager – Corporate Affairs & Finance, Novlet Deans (right).

From left: Board Chairman, Keith Sangster and Deloris Bailey, Manager are pictured with ARC’s General Manager- Corporate Affairs & Finance, Novlet Deans following the company’s donation of feminine hygiene products, clothing, shoes, and an assortment of non-perishable food items. 

Published in The Jamaica Gleaner.

ARC Tackles Violence Against Women

Due to increasing statistics of domestic violence across the globe, ARC Manufacturing Limited tackled the issue during the third instalment of its Power Lunch Series recently.

The event which was hosted via Zoom, featured Deputy Commissioner of Police (Ret’d) Novelette Grant delivering an impactful presentation on ‘Violence Against Women’.

During her presentation, Grant explored the effects of domestic violence on victims, businesses, and the economy as “it robs victims of their dignity and health, business continuity is affected through reduced productivity which negatively impacts the economy.”

There has been a global increase in domestic violence cases since the pandemic, so Grant urged her audience to use their power to challenge violence against women, advocate for change and gain the necessary knowledge to combat gender inequality, as it is a shared endeavour.

“Let us start to think about how we educate and train our boys in the ways of respect, empathy, and what it means to have healthy relationships and care for the dignity of those around,” she shared.

According to the General Manager of Corporate Affairs & Finance, Novlet Deans, the ISO 9001:2015 company exploits a number of programs that contribute to behavioural change and improved self-development.

“We try to connect our staff with the right resources to help them improve in every aspect of their lives. That, coupled with an environment where they can nurture their talents and assume fundamental roles within the organization, is what we believe will help to create more exemplary and effective leaders,” she stated.

ARC’s Power Lunch Series, is one of many initiatives that provide staff with opportunities for personal and professional enrichment, via key speakers from various sectors. The building materials company is expected to continue this trend as it looks to create an environment of equality and mutual respect, where women are represented in leadership roles and further career advancement opportunities for all its staff.

Published by Loop Jamaica.

ARC Builds a Way for Dupont Primary

Principal of Dupont Primary & Infant School, Andrew Rowe (left), beams with joy as he receives a much-needed donation of building materials from ARC Manufacturing Limited’s Managing Director, Deanall Barnes (right). The donation included an assortment of nails, lumber, plywood, and other building materials that will be used to construct an isolation room, where students who display signs of flu-like symptoms can be properly assessed. The Olympic Way institution can now resume face-to-face classes for its students in the preparation of the Primary Exit Profile (PEP).

Published by The Jamaica Gleaner.