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Contractor of the Year

One of CFA’s top awards ‘The Contractor of the Year’, selected by the Board of Directors, is given to a CFA member who demonstrates the service, technology and knowledge needed to advance the use of poured wall construction.
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A 27-year CFA member known as an innovator in the poured wall industry, Arie Van Wyk, was selected as the 2006 CFA Contractor of the Year. When presented with

this recognition at CFA’s Annual Meeting Breakfast and Award Ceremony in January, Arie humbly responded “my success comes from the ideas I get from you!”

CFA Board President Terry Lavy refers to Van Wyk “as a leading innovator of developing his own company through participation in the CFA Association.” Arie says “The CFA Association has guided the industry, and I’ve grown along with it. Networking with others through CFA has provided me with a great deal of knowledge and ideas throughout the years.” Van Wyk also served 14 years as a member of the CFA Board of Directors from 1990 to 2004.

CFA members are now the ones reaping the rewards of Van Wyk’s experience. He keeps an open invitation to CFA members to visit and see first hand how he runs his Wisconsin shop. Van Wyk’s goal is to help others make good business choices of their own.

Arie, along with his wife Sue, run Van Wyks, Inc., based in Waldo, Wisconsin with 80 employees.

The company opened its doors over 25 years ago when Arie, a house mover, had problems placing homes on new foundations. He decided to set his own foundations and began his block foundation business. In 1988, they began using poured concrete walls and today are one of the most experienced poured-wall contractors in their area. Arie has set his sights to continue modest business growth each year. He’s looking for the next generation in his family to take over eventually, as they have two children also in the business; a son who is an excavation manager and a daughter in accounting.

Arie sees future growth coming in other areas for them, not in house basements, but in apartment housing and condos. He is thinking about doing more ‘package services’ like water proofing insulating, plates on top of basement walls, and possibly pouring first floor decks.

COPY THE OLD GUYS… AND GET THE TECHNOLOGY

Arie’s advice to those just starting out in concrete foundations is to “Copy the old guys, that’s what I did. I looked to other members in CFA to learn about both the good and the bad ideas. That’s how I got this far, on account of the CFA.” He says that with the CFA mentoring, networking, and meetings, he’s learned a lot of short cuts.

He is also quick to point out that members must embrace technology. He says that “it seems every year something new is invented. It’s important to get into the technology early and beat your competition!”

EMPLOYEE TRAINING

At Van Wyk’s employee training took a turn to the top as they recently started an in-house training program, complete with their own Safety Officer and training room. They also send their employees to CFA and ABC safety and training seminars.

MORE ABOUT THE COMPANY

Arie says “we pride ourselves in service. We have a general manager and dispatch manager in our office all day, everyday. That means our customers get a real person, not a machine to talk to, that can answer their questions and help them right away.”

They run four wall crews, two footing crews, two stripping crews, three flatwork crews and one waterproofing crew. Their services include concrete walls, waterproofing and concrete repair. Their wall forms reach any height including true nine foot forms. Their forms come in a smooth finish as well in a brick face pattern, both on the inside or outside. All footings are formed with FORM-A-DRAIN®, a CertainTeed™ product. The ‘FORM-A-DRAIN® footings allow them to have the forms andfoundation drainage system built into the same system. This allows their crews to build the footings quickly and accurately. Before and after they lay out any footings, crews use geodometer robotic equipment to pinpoint the exact location of all corners of the footings.

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“Arie Van Wyk is certainly one of the most innovative contractors we have in our industry, and has one of the fastest growing companies in the CFA organization. He is always helping other CFA members by sharing new ideas, and telling others about his problems and how he solved them. Arie is always looking for the latest technology.
He’s an outstanding individual of highest character. We can all depend on Arie as a friend. He is the type of person that any young contractor starting out would certainly want to emulate.”
Barry Herbert – Herbert Construction
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Arie Van Wyk
Van Wyks, Inc
Waldo, WI
www.vanwyksinc.com
arie@vanwyksinc.com
 
Van Wyks, Inc. is a concrete foundation company specializing in solid poured concrete walls. They also do concrete flatwork and are a certified Koch Waterproofing installer. Serving Eastern Wisconsin from Green Bay to Kenosha and out to Johnson Creek, Van Wyks, Inc. is a full service company recognized for its work in these major areas:
 
· Excavation
· Construction of Below-Grade Basements and Retaining Walls
· Construction of Above-Grade Commercial Structures, Bunk Silos, Agricultural Confinements and more
· Foundation Waterproofing
· Bilco Scape Wells
· Flatwork and Specialty Flatwork
· Expert Concrete Repair
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Concrete FACTS, a publication of the Concrete Foundations Association, is THE voice for residential concrete industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the cast-in-place concrete industry. Subscriptions to Concrete FACTS is available to anyone involved or interested in the residential concrete industry as a service to your industry. Please contact CFA Headquarters to find out more about your free subscription or Email Us