When Steve Taylor went out on a limb to launch Capital Tree Service in 2004, he couldn’t foresee how dramatically the business would grow.
The Saanich resident started out at 27 years of age with four employees and two trucks, doing strictly maintenance work and hazardous tree removal for BC Hydro on the southern part of Vancouver Island and the Gulf islands.
“We’ve grown incrementally since then,” said Taylor, a proud fourth generation Victorian. “We have 13 trucks now and 20 to 30 employees at any given time.”
Taylor credits part of the company’s success to putting a priority on hiring local workers and providing high-paying jobs, as well as making a concerted effort to invest in their training.
“The vast majority of them are from Saanich,” Taylor noted. “Hiring quality people is a key to our success. A lot of the guys have been with us a long time and grown with the company.”
Capital Tree Service performs a variety of tasks, including residential and commercial work and jobs for BC Hydro and local municipalities.
“We provide public safety by removing hazards and keeping hydro lines clear,” he explained during an interview at a job site where a crew was removing two large, diseased trees.
Capital Tree Service helped clean up in the aftermath of a severe ice storm in 2014, with 20 employees working on it for more than a year.
“We took a few trucks with us and bought a few when we were there,” Taylor said.
Taylor recently took over Qualified Tree Service and purchased a 125-foot boom truck, the largest in Canada.
“That sets us apart, makes the job safer and opens the door for more work,” he noted.
Another key element of Taylor’s business philosophy is the importance he places on being a socially responsible company that gives back to the community in many ways.
Capital Tree Service supports Saanich Minor Hockey, the Saanich Volunteer Society, Victoria Shamrocks lacrosse, Victoria Grizzlies hockey and Lochside School, to name a few.
The company adopted a stretch of the Pat Bay Highway in Saanich, and has done pro bono work for the Land Conservancy as well.
“There’s many more initiatives we support,” he said. “We’re always approachable if it’s for a good cause.”
Taylor, a former junior hockey player, also coaches novice hockey, a volunteer activity he thoroughly enjoys.
“It’s tough to leave the rink without a smile on your face coaching kids that age,” he added.
Check out capitaltreeservice.ca for more information.