In 1967, K‑Line founder E. Glenn Kellett developed an entrepreneurial vision to create a Canadian owned company to provide services to the municipal utilities market. At this point in time, Glenn had over 20 years of trade experience; 17 years’ with Ontario Hydro and 3 years with Scarborough Hydro.
Glenn went out and purchased his first truck. It was a well-used A-Frame digger, but it was affordable enough to help start the business. Glenn incorporated the Company and established the first office in the basement of his family home in Scarborough.
At that point in history, Utilities were starting to outsource for the first time. With the support of the management of local utilities, Glenn was awarded immediate work. Initially, K‑Line focused primarily on being overhead lines specialists.
Glenn’s first employees were mostly seasoned veterans to the line trade and collectively they provided a level of performance that gave way to exceptional customer satisfaction.
The foundation of K‑Line was built on Glenn’s belief to provide excellent project management and well trained employees, carry out exceptional quality of workmanship and always have an unwavering commitment to safety.
As K‑Line solidified its position in the industry, the corporate commitment to safety only grew stronger. The emphasis Glenn placed on safety is forever engrained in K‑Line’s corporate culture.
As K‑Line’s customer’s demands grew, K‑Line met these challenges by expanding the scope of its services and resources. K‑Line broke free from focusing solely on overhead lines and opened a laboratory to provide in-house rubber goods testing.
In 1969, Glenn wanted to expand the service offerings further and incorporated the engineering, distribution design and field services arm of K‑Line, named K‑Tek Electro-Services Ltd.
In 1977, not long after creating K‑Tek, Glenn was approached to provide contractor services in Libya, Africa. The job entailed installing many kilometers of overhead and underground feeders over a six month period in the middle of the Sahara desert. This was the largest project K‑Line undertook and had the potential to make or break the company. Glenn took the calculated risk and mortgaged his assets to allow K‑Line to complete the project in Africa. Following the successful completion of this job, K‑Line stayed in Africa for another five years supplying power to the Bengasi airport.
In 1980, Glenn Kellett once again saw an opportunity for expansion. While in Saskatchewan Glenn decided to stop at the SaskPower facility to inquire about opportunities in the province. He was informed that the Saskatchewan area contracts were out for renewal. K‑Line decided to bid on the contracts and was successfully awarded the Prince Albert and Yorkton area contracts. In 1985, K‑Line set up a permanent facility in White City, Saskatchewan where K‑Line still operates today.
In 1983, not long after expanding to Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia Power contacted K‑Line asking if there was interest to work in Atlantic Canada. Eager to expand and diversify K‑Line’s market share, K‑Line accepted the challenge. For the next twelve years, K‑Line performed live line distribution work and the construction of transmission lines in Nova Scotia and the surrounding Atlantic provinces.
In 1983, K‑Line recognized an opportunity to develop and manufacture superior energy products and formed K‑Line Insulators Ltd. The first few years focused on assembly production and research and development for an innovative insulator. Shortly thereafter, K‑Line designed and patented the award winning “K‑Clamp”. For more information on K‑Line Insulators Ltd., please visit k‑line.net.
Refusing to remain stagnate, K‑Line began exploring yet another opportunities to diversify its market share. In 1994, an opportunity came to acquire a contractor in British Columbia, Allteck, located in the lower main land. In the spring of 1994 Glenn’s son, Allan Kellett, among others relocated to BC to set up shop. For a while, K‑Line officially operated coast to coast, from British Columbia to Nova Scotia.
In 1998, another major event in K‑Line’s history occurred. One of the most devastating ice storms hit Ontario. Many contractors were called to help, but K‑Line was the only contractor allowed to perform live-line work during storm repair.
In 1999, K‑Line once again expanded and diversified our market share by creating K‑Line International (Canada) Ltd.
This company was created with the purpose of focusing on turn-key contracts on an international scale.
The most recent expansion in K‑Line’s history occurred in 2005, when K‑Line began operating in Alberta. A few short years later, K‑Line acquired a local Alberta contractor and formally set up another division in Lethbridge, Alberta.
Today, The K‑Line Group of Companies remains a family run business and is owned by Glenn’s two sons Mark Kellett and Allan Kellett. Mark and Allan joined the company at a young age and progressed through the Powerline Technician Apprenticeship program before moving into management roles.
The K‑Line Group is comprised of four companies all with a specialized focus on varying aspects of the high voltage industry:
Today K‑Line employs over 400 employees across Canada and continues to operate on the family values instilled by Glenn with a strong focus on safety, quality and dedication to our customers.