Established in 1921, PF Collins is a fourth generation family business with a rich history of proudly supporting our clients in their international trade and project logistics activities. It has been an exciting 95 years – from the early days of arranging the movement of goods to ports along the coast of Newfoundland to supporting the operations of world class drilling rigs in today’s dynamic offshore oil and gas environment.
We have certainly witnessed many changes! With a client base extending to virtually every sector of the economy, what started out as a one man operation has evolved into a progressive, internationally-renowned global logistics provider.
Patrick Francis Collins, a St. John’s clothing merchant, became a Customs Broker shortly after a fire destroyed his store in 1913. In the first part of the 20th century, international transport was still largely marine and St. John’s was the key port of entry for Newfoundland.
Newfoundland was still a colony of Great Britain and King George V appointed PF Collins as the dominion’s official Customs Broker in 1921. PF Collins participated in the development of Newfoundland’s first industries and helped arrange the movement of vital imported goods to points around the island.
After confederation with Canada in 1949, Newfoundland’s trading patterns and transportation systems began to change significantly. PF Collins and his son Bernard, who joined the firm in 1935, welcomed these challenges as an opportunity to further expand the business. They participated in early industrial developments, from the Grand Falls and Corner Brook pulp and paper mills to the establishment of the Pepperrell and Argentia U.S. military stations. They represented the Holyrood and Come-By-Chance refineries and the Churchill Falls Hydro development while also including the Province’s many fishing and mining interests, merchants and factories among their clientele.
By the 1970’s, Bernard J. (Tanny) Collins joined the family business and took responsibility for developing the company’s involvement in petroleum exploration activities off the coast of Newfoundland. Offshore oil and gas was a new frontier for Newfoundland business; a new trading environment was evolving and customs regulations were changing. Tanny worked with key industry stakeholders to advance the regulatory environment and eliminate trade barriers to critical elements of offshore development, including seismic exploration, drilling operations, and immigration legislation related to temporary foreign workers.
Identifying new opportunities in the oil and gas sector, Tanny focused on expanding PF Collins’ range of services by sponsoring staff education to maximize his team’s knowledge, committing resources to new technologies, and registering the company to the ISO 9001 quality management standard. Gaining the confidence of international oil companies and providing integrated logistics services to major developments such as Hibernia, Terra Nova, White Rose, Sable, and Deep Panuke, PF Collins became a leading provider of international trade and logistics to Canada’s offshore oil and gas and marine industries.
Today, PF Collins is recognized worldwide for our history and expertise in offshore and marine project logistics. We have offices in Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Alberta, employing over 100 customs, logistics, and immigration professionals. Current President, Raymond Collins, continues to focus on expanding the company’s market presence while maintaining its traditional family values of quality and service excellence.