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Norbert Hoffman, Novenco Consultants Ltd
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Hoffmann, chief executive officer for Novenco Consultants Ltd., came to Canada in 1963 from Germany where he was a specialist in reinforced concrete, and also a mason.

"I came to Canada looking for adventure," Hoffman says.

In 1968 Hoffmann got involved in masonry and building contracting in Canada. In 1980 he purchased a sandblasting and painting company and became involved in the industrial bricklaying refractorie business, working on furnaces in the smelters. In 1990 the refractorie business grew and he started doing business offshore, supplying bricks and mortar to new acid plants around the world. By 1993 he had developed a new process for creating polymer concrete hybrid tanks out of a secret formula he created over 20 years ago to hold highly corrosive sulphuric acid.

"I educated myself and through trial and error developed the formula used today," Hoffman says.

Hoffmann dabbled with various blends of polymers, fiberglass resin and concrete before he came up with the winning formula. His vision was to replace the high-maintenance steel- and rubber-lined or lead-lined concrete tanks the mines were using, which leaked. His formula corrected the problem.

Novenco has made and installed hundreds of tanks since his first tank was installed in 1992.

"Those tanks installed in 1992 are still going strong."

Novenco has one competitor, based in Belgium.


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