The Story of a Passionate Family
Victoriaville & Co. was born out of the determination, the leadership and the will to succeed of its founders. Much of our success is due to the economic well-being of an entire region renowned for the quality of its hardwood products.
For the last seven decades, all details have been taken into account when designing, manufacturing, and finishing our hardwood products. We are well aware that each unit we produce is destined to a person with a unique life story and a unique set of memories that they leave behind. This is why we believe each product has a rich emotional value that is worthy of our respect.
Over the past few years, we have also offered The Essentials, a wide range of funeral products designed to meet the needs of professionals committed to supporting grieving families in their mourning process.
The funeral industry has undergone considerable changes over the past several years. Changes in mourning habits and rituals have radically transformed the funeral industry around the world. Across North America, major independent players are now selling to multinational interests.
At Victoriaville & Co., this shift in the industry has resulted in significant business decisions. More than twenty acquisitions and subsidiaries have marked our history. Today, we are the largest family-owned business in North America that is still involved in the sale and distribution of funeral products.
Here are the highlights of our history:
|1907||J.E. Hébert founded a lumber mill company.|
|1939||After several years of financial support, J.E. Hébert developed a formal partnership with J.A. Dumont.|
|1945||Victoria Industries was founded. The new company manufactured furniture using the timber from the mill.|
|1948||Victoria Industries was renamed Victoriaville Caskets Ltd.|
|1954||Mr. Claude Dumont, J.A. Dumont’s nephew started working for the company.|
|1974||Mr. Claude Dumont became President of the company.|
|1975-1982||The company became one of the largest casket manufacturers in Canada. It was during this period that Joseph-Adélard Dumont passed away.|
|1984||During this period, in order to secure a strong position on the market, the company management acquired Mount Forest Caskets in Mount Forest, Ontario, and renamed it Premier Caskets.|
|1989||Strategic partnership with Aurora, which was then the largest independent manufacturer of steel caskets in America.|
|1990||Alain, Claude Dumont’s son, joined the company and represented the third generation of the Dumont family to work in the family business. He founded Vic Royal Caskets Inc. by acquiring the assets of Atlas Caskets, which had closed its doors in December 1989.|
|1992||Creation of "Previc," an integrated network in charge of managing sales and distribution operations across Eastern Canada.|
|1995||Cerco Industries, Montreal Caskets and Danyco Funeral Products joined the Group.|
|1997||Major fire at the Vic Royal Caskets Inc. plant.|
|1998||Investment of $25 million to relocate the Vic Royal Caskets Inc. plant in Victoriaville, and to modernize and expand its facilities.|
|2000||Repatriation by the Government of Canada of The Unknown Soldier who died in the Battle of Vimy Ridge, France, during the First World War. On May 28, 2000, the Unknown Soldier was laid to rest at the National War Memorial in Ottawa in a casket called Dominion made in Victoriaville from Canadian silver maple. A classic model developed to honour and support this worthy cause.|
|2002||Creation of Victoriaville Funeral Supplies Inc. which consolidated the Group's operations. Alain Dumont was appointed President and Chief Operating Officer while his father, Claude, was named Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer.|
|2006||Investment of $5 million to modernize the paint system in an effort to maintain the highest level of quality standards, while increasing production capacity.|
|2007-2009||Acquisition and integration of Advantage Distributors, in New Brunswick, and J.I. Astley Associates Inc., in Toronto. A new distribution centre was built in Victoriaville. The original Victoriaville Caskets Ltd. building was demolished during this period and replaced by a shopping centre.|
|2010- 2012||Victoriaville Funeral Supplies Inc. celebrated its nominations to Canada's 50 Best Managed Companies for 2009-2010 and 2011.
It was the first time a Canadian company operating in the field of funeral services had ever received a distinction of this kind.
With the merging of Manchester Supply Inc. and Alton Caskets, Victoriaville Funeral Supplies Inc. became one of the most important suppliers of funeral products in North America.
Also, that year, Claude decided to retire in order to spend more time with his family.Victoriaville Funeral Supplies Inc. was involved as leading partner in the creation of Legacy Tribute UK, a joint venture combining Canadian, American and British forces. The company soon became the largest distributor of American-style caskets in the United Kingdom.
|2015||Prestige 2000, a company that had been distributing caskets in the Québec area for over 45 years merged its operations with those of Victoriaville Funeral Supplies Inc. This project represented a return to basics for the Dumont and Cayer families because there had been a working relationship between Claude Dumont and Réal Cayer in the years prior to the merger.
The arrival of Charles-Olivier Dumont, representing the fourth generation of the Dumont Family. He joined the family business after completing a Master's degree in Accounting. He also successfully passed all the exams to become a Certified Chartered Accountant.
Charles-Olivier has always had an entrepreneurial spirit, and when he joined the company, he started sharing his passion for the family business with his colleagues for whom he has a great deal of respect. His arrival has given a fresh impetus to the whole team.
|2016||Following the creation of Legacy Tribute UK, the company proudly collaborated with ACC Higgins and launched Legacy Tribute Australia to offer a new range of caskets specifically designed and manufactured for the Australian market.|
|2017||Maritime Caskets Ltd. merged its operations with those of Victoriaville Funeral Supplies Inc., and the Group completed the acquisition of J&R Mfg., a distribution company based in New York City. This acquisition represented the Company’s first foray into the American market.|
|2018||After 111 years of existence and 70 years of “exclusive” commitment towards the funeral industry, Victoriaville Funeral Supplies Inc. changed its name to Victoriaville & Co. in order to refocus on a new vision and a new mission, but with the same passion and the same promise to its various regional, national and international clients.|
|2019||Victoriaville & Co. acquires the Canadian facility of Matthews Aurora Funeral Solutions, Alliance St-Laurent Casket. During the past 25 years, we have been a client, a supplier, and a financial partner of Alliance St-Laurent Casket. Today, with this acquisition, we thus come full circle and wish to breathe new life into this regional jewel. In 2019, we have seen several innovations and changes including partnerships with Un Cadeau du Ciel and Legacy Tribute USA as well as the acquisition of Créations Frank Langlais.|