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Into Africa: FormaShape SilkTek provides ready made storefront solutions


October 30, 2012 – Kelowna, British Columbia

When the team at FormaShape was hired to fabricate storefronts for Puma Energy, they were faced with a unique set of challenges, not the least of which was geography. The stylish, pre-fabricated facings were destined for a chain of gas station convenience stores … in Angola, Africa.

“Our SilkTek composites are extremely popular among North American fuel retailers looking to upscale their image,” says Bren Steele, Director of Marketing and Sales at FormaShape. “Sending our products to another continent, nearly 14,000 kilometres away, that was a new experience for our team, one that proved extremely successful.”

The enormous panels – the largest produced to date in the FormaShape plant – measured over four metres high and were up to 10 metres long. Once carefully secured in a custom container, 20 sets were transported to a secondary facility in North Carolina, where they were each bundled with a prefabricated building and then shipped to Africa.

“From a production standpoint, there were a few challenges,” says Russ Mulder, Mould Shop Manager. “The biggest ones hinged on the fact that the fascia had to be nearly seamless and extremely strong, yet light and easy to assemble onsite, with a minimum of skilled labour and equipment.”

Like a giant ship in a bottle, the complete building package was assembled almost entirely by a crane, and resulted in a sleek, durable structure that showcased the Pumangol image.

“SilkTek composites are an excellent option, whether a company is building from the ground-up, or looking to revitalize the look of their retail operations without tearing down walls,” says Steele. “The versatility of our moulds and the ingenuity of our production crew mean our clients’ options are virtually limitless.”