What if you had a chance to buy acompany five times bigger than your current business? If you’re JennyCoco, you move very fast to nail down the deal. The acquisitive Ms.Coco is chief executive officer of a family company, Coco Paving Inc.,founded in Windsor, Ont., that has overnight become a force in roadconstruction in Eastern Canada. That’s because of its recent takeoverof Paris-based Lafarge SA’s road paving operations in Ontario andQuebec. That takes Coco Paving from a local Windsor operation to a bigregional player with a new consolidated head office in Toronto.
Jenny Coco – CEO Coco Paving Inc – Toronto, Canada
How big is this deal for you?
We’re a family-owned company so the details we give out on ourfinancial ratings and capabilities are minuscule. But in regards toLafarge, and the asset base we’ve acquired, they have sales volumesover $500-million. There are 1,200 people with Lafarge, so we aretransitioning to be a very large company.
Isn’t it gutsy to do this in a recession?
I’m not about to say we’re not gutsy. My father is a landed immigrantfrom Italy and started his own business here. He still has his Italianaccent. He and my mother started this business in the 1960s when theycame over. My brother and I now own it and we have a lot ofopportunities.
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TITLE: chief executive officer,
BORN: 1961 in Sarnia, Ont.
EDUCATION: Bachelor of science in chemistry; MBA, University of WindsorCAREER HIGHLIGHTS: Planned a career in financial institutions, but waspersuaded to join the family company.
Rose to become CEO of Coco Paving, working with brother Rock Anthony Coco, who is the president.
Succeeded their parents, William and Nina, who founded the firm in 1964.
Company is part of the Coco Group, which includes commercialdevelopment, aggregates, home-building and the Ambassador Golf Club.
BIG DEAL: This year’s takeover of Eastern Canadian paving operations of Lafarge SA. Closed on June 15.