Onward Multicorp traces its roots all the way back to 1906 when T.A. Witzel started his own small business manufacturing and selling ball-point pens. He re-named his company Onward Manufacturing in 1910 and spent the next 30 years expanding his product line to include hardware and home appliances. As most other Canadian companies, he shifted his production during the second world war to arms and munitions parts to help the Allied war effort. The resulting increase in manufacturing capacity left the company ideally positioned to take advantage of the post-war economic boom. During this period, they expanded into the barbecue market and grew into a market leader developing such brand names as Broil King and Stirling.
By the 1960's, the company had grown to the point where it was split into three divisions operating under the Onward Multicorp umbrella. The Barbecue Division manufactured and sold brand name barbecues and became Canadian distributors for the Weber line from the U.S. The Appliance division under the name T.A. Appliances continues to be the largest local retailer of household appliances. The third division Onward Hardware distributed a full line of hardware products such as hinges and locks, with a line of cabinet fittings that was known across North America.
By the mid 1990's, Onward Hardware Multicorp had outgrown its facilities and needed to increase both floor space and production capacity. It was at that time that the opportunity came up to acquire the Cluthe Manufacturing Company. Founded by George Cluthe in 1939, they had steadily grown their product line to include a full line of screwdrivers under the Unidriver name, a wide range of moulded products that included tool-boxes, housewares, funnels, oilers, custom moulded products for local businesses, as well as a complete line of furniture glides with a market presence across North America.
The next few years saw the company now renamed Onward Cluthe Hardware Products, rationalize its products into three distinctive groups. Its custom moulded products, spearheaded by barbecue parts, grew its customer base worldwide and continues to satisfy client needs in a wide range of products, from automotive parts to bagpipes. The furniture glide product line has become a world standard and encompasses both the Cluthe brand names and a full range of custom glides. The home and industrial line has maintained it's trademark products such as the Unidriver, while growing its funnels, oilers, scoops and containers to a leadership position in Canada.
This growth in the injection-moulding business necessitated the sale of its Hardware component to Richelieu Hardware of Canada in 2001 to concentrate on its core competence. C.E.O. Ted Witzel, Executive V.P. Terry Witzel and V.P. Operations Rick A. Sellner head a dedicated team which received ISO 9002-1994 registration in 2002, and are committed to serving you, our customers.