KBC Tools & Machinery Canada celebrates 35 years north of the border

June 19, 2024 - 08:45am

August 1, 2024 marks KBC Tools & Machinery Canada’s 35th anniversary as an MRO supplier serving the Canadian metalworking industry.

The adventure began with convergence of Karel Bass’, KBC’s Founder, occasional trips from Detroit to Windsor for dim sum luncheons and free trade. The U.S.-Canada Free Trade Agreement was signed by President Ronald Reagan and Prime Minister Brian Mulroney on January 2, 1988, with the goal of eliminating all tariffs on trade between the two countries. The agreement was entered into force on January 1, 1989, after both parties to the agreement had enacted implementing legislation. (The treaty was superseded by the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between the U.S., Canada, and Mexico when it entered into force on January 1, 1994.)

From the concept to the implementation of the Free Trade Agreement, Karel Bass started thinking, planning, and making the first Canadian branch of KBC Tools & Machinery a reality on August 1, 1989 with the opening of its Canadian Headquarters in Mississauga, Ontario, (branches in Oldcastle, Ontario and Delta, British Columbia soon to follow). KBC could now serve its many long term Canadian clients in Canada on the US Canadian border between Detroit and Windsor and beyond with ease and speed.

Right from the start, KBC chose to invest in Canada as a base of operations, rather than parachute tools in from the U.S. “If you're going to do business in a country, you need to develop a direct relationship with your customers there, and we chose to do that by establishing showrooms and stocking warehouses in each Canadian branch. I am sure that our clients agree that we've been able to provide fast, quality service by being the metalworking supplier around the corner ...and throughout the country rather than a faceless Internet company,” says, Paula Bass, KBC Tools & Machinery’s President. Paula has now called Canada home for 34 years, and she and her daughters are proud to be dual citizens of The US and Canada.

So, while providing Canadian brick and mortar and jobs at its 3 Canadian locations, KBC also has a Canadian website (www.kbctools.com) that makes it easy for buying tools after hours or for those not near a Canadian branch to order their tooling because they know direct, knowledgeable sales support is just a phone call or email away. The website also features more than 100,000 items spanning cutting tools, carbide tooling, fluids, work holding, abrasives, measuring and inspection, toolroom accessories, hand tools, shop supplies, power/air tools, and machinery. As Bass notes, when KBC first came to Canada it was the first company in the industry to have a priced catalogue, revolutionizing the way tools are sold and the prices they sell at in this country.

Related Glossary Terms

  • metalworking


    Any manufacturing process in which metal is processed or machined such that the workpiece is given a new shape. Broadly defined, the term includes processes such as design and layout, heat-treating, material handling and inspection.


WFL Multifunction Turning and Milling Centers are employed across various industries, with aerospace being a significant market. ArianeGroup, at the forefront of space transportation, stands as a…

Shipments of cutting tools, measured by the Cutting Tool Market Report compiled in a collaboration between AMT – The Association For Manufacturing Technology and the U.S. Cutting Tool Institute (…

EXAIR, a leader in engineered compressed air solutions and static elimination, and BETE, an engineered spray nozzle and spraying systems manufacturer, have entered into a definitive merger agreement…