The CEO was angry at Polycor’s $ 98 million

The Quebec granite maker finds it difficult to explain why Quebec has just invested nearly $ 100 million in Polycor, and is asking the prime minister to reconsider his decision.

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“The government has nothing to do with this. Why is he there? This question. I don’t know, “said Alain Robitai, CEO of Granicor’s century-old family business in Saint-Augustin de Desmore.

Last week, Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon announced a $ 98 million investment in Polycor’s equity to “save jobs and the company’s headquarters in Quebec.”

When Granicor CEO Alain Robitai heard the news, he fell from his chair and sent a letter to Prime Minister Francois Lego and his economy minister asking him to step down.

“Weaken the industry”

In his message about what Newspaper received a copy, the businessman speaks of his “great surprise”, of his “irritation” and says he is “shocked” by the announcement.

According to him, the investment even risks “weakening the stone industry in Quebec by exposing it to the monopoly Polycor.”

“There is no economic or logical reason for this. This is not a grant. This is an investment in share capital, “he said.

When reminded that the purpose of the investment is to protect the headquarters in Quebec, Alain Robitai does not move.

“It simply does not hold water. Why defend this head office there and not another? It’s not such a big head office, “he said.

“If the head office was elsewhere, that would have changed. Their factories and quarries would still be here. For Quebec, it doesn’t make much difference, “he said.

Quebec roots

More than 1,300 people work at Polycor, including 400 in Quebec.

Since 1987, Polycor, based in Quebec, has been mining granite, marble and limestone in about fifty quarries in Europe, North America and Quebec, where there are about twenty.

With the participation of Quebec and Polycor’s management, the company will now own approximately 20% of Quebec’s shares.

Previously, Polycor was owned by the Canadian firm TorQuest and the American investment funds Wynnchurch Capital and PNC Mezzanine.

Today, the Toronto Birch Hill Equity Partners Management Foundation is buying it to accelerate its automation and expansion.

“Wrong way”

However, for the great boss Granicor, the pill does not work. He is convinced that Quebec is on the “wrong path”, putting its eggs in Polycor.

“If they get too big, only their stones will be mentioned in the quotes,” fears a man in the same business sector.

According to small and medium-sized businesses founded by his grandfather a hundred years ago, Quebec would do better to support the entire industry with that $ 100 million.

Joined NewspaperPolycor replied that “there will be no comments on this, and there will be no interviews.”

The offices of Prime Minister Francois Lego and Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon did not comment.


  • Foundation: 1922
  • Head office: Saint-Auguste-de-Demor
  • CEO: Alain Robitai
  • Shareholders: Alain Robitai, Yves Bayarjon, Rafael Bayarjon and Paul Junior Robitai
  • Employees: 50
  • Products: non-standard saws, roughing block, plate, sawing services
  • Achievement: China Life Tower, North York City Center, CBS Building, Hotel 21 East, National Gallery of Canada, tribute to Quebec