What drives profit for B.C.’s top-tier income earners

Telus, Finning, B2Gold, Central 1 credit collaboration, innovation for their bottom-line success

Telus is the second most profitable company headquartered in B.C.  | Rob Kruyt/BIV files

 

Telus

Vancouver-headquartered Telus (TSX:T), Canada’s third-largest telecommunications company, secured the No. 2 ranking on BIV’s list of B.C.’s most profitable companies in 2019 with a net income of $1.78 billion, up 9.38% from the previous year

Telus credits the company’s corporate social responsibility strategy for its long-term profitability. Zainul Mawji, president of Telus Home Solutions, said that by prioritizing customers and the community, the firm has focused on significant long-term investments, including digital medicine via Telus Health and its Babylon mobile app, which allows users to check symptoms, consult doctors and access their clinical records.

By investing in long-term community-focused projects, Mawji said, Telus has not only maintained a stable level of profitability and growth, but it has also supported the community by providing important non-financial benefits – particularly during the pandemic.

Mawji said that by focusing investment on achieving long-term social outcomes rather than short-term monetary gains, Telus has been able to consistently post a net income that is among the highest in the province.

Finning

Finning International Inc. (TSX:FTT) is an international distributor of industrial equipment across various sectors including mining, construction, forestry and petroleum. Headquartered in Vancouver, it’s the world’s largest dealer of Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) machinery and was B.C.’s 10th most profitable company, earning net income of $242 million in 2019, up 4.31% from 2018.

Finning credits its ability to remain profitable, despite volatility in the general economy and the price of oil, by providing space for employees to innovate. By doing so, Finning developed and significantly expanded its digital customer service platform and e-commerce capabilities, the company said. Over the past several years, Finning has invested in digitizing the company and its services, which has contributed to its bottom line and positioned the company to address the accelerated digital shift the economy has undergone during the pandemic.

According to the company, Finning not only afforded employees an environment in which innovation is encouraged and lauded, but it also placed an emphasis on listening to the customer, allowing the company to gain a better understanding of how businesses use its products and services. Finning collaborated with customers to help meet their business needs and credits its customer focus for its profitability.

B2Gold

B2Gold Corp. (TSX:BTO), which is headquartered in Vancouver, has mines in Africa and the Philippines. Positioned as British Columbia’s sixth most profitable company in 2019, B2Gold recorded net income of $419 million, up 616.8% from 2018.

While the company has enjoyed rapid growth, it was not always this profitable. B2Gold started in 2007 with no profit, according to Clive Johnson, president and CEO of B2Gold Corp.

However, thanks to its focus on long-term growth, a successful project acquisition and development strategy and a knack for exploration inherited from its founders’ experience in previous ventures, the company has become one of the most profitable in the province.

Johnson said B2Gold also has one of the lowest gold production costs in the world at roughly $800 per ounce, which has put the company in a position to offer the highest dividend in the gold sector.

The company attributes its success to its long-term strategy and company culture, expressed through treating people with fairness, respect and accountability to the people and communities it works with.

Central 1

Central 1 Credit Union, headquartered in Vancouver, has been in business for more than 75 years, and in 2019 was ranked the ninth most profitable company with a net income of $242.6 million.

The institution maintained its high profitability despite slipping in net income – down 14.2% from $282.6 million in 2018.

For Central 1, the key to its profitability is maintaining a focus on its core objectives: ensuring the success of credit unions and the financial well-being of Canadians, it said. Aside from keeping its mission front and centre, Central 1 also attributes its profitability to the company’s collaborative environment – not only among its employees, but also with its clients. A consultative approach with customers allows Central 1 to customize its service and make decisions aimed at ensuring long-term success, it said. •