Denis Turcotte, P. Eng.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Algoma Steel Inc.
Denis Turcotte has led the development of business plans and strategies that have revived failing and marginal businesses, turning them into solid companies that benefit northern Ontario communities.
His latest turnaround began in 2002, when Turcotte joined Algoma Steel Inc. at a point when it had just emerged from creditor protection, but with high costs, significant debt, and a weak market position. The objective was to transform Algoma Steel into a profitable business, drive value for its shareholders, and improve stability for its employees. Under his direction as president and chief executive officer, Algoma Steel has since flourished into a profitable corporation with annual sales approaching $2 billion. Over the last four years, the Company has been able to: triple capital spending; pay out over $86 million in profit sharing to employees; pay off over $350 million in debt; distribute approximately $540 million to shareholders; and increase the market value of the company by $1.2 billion. The success of the company has resulted in security for more than 3,000 jobs in Sault Ste. Marie, a community of only 75,000 residents.
Previously, Turcotte successfully restructured the operations of the Spruce Falls paper mill in Kapuskasing, which had been under threat of closure. The successful employee buyout in 1991 demonstrated his expertise in managing people and resources, while working with unions, the community, and other stakeholders. The $350-million restructuring plan that followed transformed the mill into a competitive and profitable operation, saving approximately 800 jobs in a remote community of 12,000 people.
Among Turcotte’s many awards and honours are the Canadian Top 40 Under 40 Award received in 1999 to recognize outstanding achievements that indicate vision, leadership, innovation and achievement, and the Lakehead University Alumni Honour Award in 2003, to recognize his outstanding business accomplishments.