Three generations of professional logistics management
Only one in every ten businesses successfully transitions to the third generation of family ownership. McKenna Logistics is one of those success stories.
An Irish immigrant to Canada, with a mindset for business, A.J. McKenna established a cartage company in Toronto with then partner Ross McBurney. Seeing that trucks were not fully utilized outside of business hours, McKenna looked to optimize truck usage by offering household moving services.
The company eventually became so proficient at this service that they became an agent of North American Van Lines. The need to store household furniture then necessitated a warehousing service, and McKenna Logistics was born. For Charlie’s entire career, hard work, integrity and customer responsiveness was the culture that enabled the business to grow under his watch.
When AJ’s son Charlie purchased the business from his father in 1971, he felt that their combination of resources and expertise would be more valuable to commercial warehousing business clients like Continental Can (now Crown, Cork and Seal) and Castrol Motor Oil. The decision to focus on consumer packaged goods clients transformed the company, positioning McKenna as a leading operator in Canada’s logistics industry.
Although now retired, having handed the company down to son John in 1993, Charlie McKenna still enjoys walking the warehouse floor and getting to know new staff.
Under current President John McKenna’s leadership, the world has changed dramatically, both geopolitically and technologically. For example, ordering and receiving data is now available via Internet, and within warehouses, transactions are now executed with the help of handheld-wireless computers.
However, John notes that while the company has worked to change and adapt over time, what has remained constant is the same customer focus and entrepreneurial culture that his father and grandfather used in their time. John continues his family legacy by promising:
“We [McKenna] listen to what the customer will need and we will be there, ready, when they need it”.
Today, McKenna has warehouses in Mississauga, Brampton (Toronto), as well as a warehouse in Delta, a suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia. With this foundation, McKenna has shown great dedication in being able to continuously adapt while also maintaining their core beliefs.
If you are interested in working with Canada’s premiere logistics management company, get in contact with a McKenna logistics consultant today!