H.J.R. Asphalt stands
out with unique
process and mobility
Using mainly asphalt plants that it has fabricated,
the company creates mixtures in its own lab
that are especially formulated to perform in a
challenging Saskatchewan environment.
By Pat Rediger
When Harry Tarasoff, Jim Tarasoff and Reg Willick founded H.J.R. Asphalt in 1988,
they were making a significant investment into their future.
The founders, who had previously worked together in the construction industry,
made the decision to start their own company and began by purchasing an asphalt drum and then
fabricating the rest of asphalt plant around it. This purchase required an investment of $5,000 from
each of the men, a not inconsiderable amount for an entrepreneur.
“Reg Willick tells the story of borrowing that seed capital from his wife because he didn’t have that
kind of money in the bank,” said Josh Safronetz, CEO of H.J.R. Asphalt. “His wife has held on to the cancelled
cheque as a reminder of those early days.”
The founders of H.J.R. Asphalt may not have had many resources in the early days, but they were
committed to laying the foundation for a successful business. The founders fabricated their first asphalt
plant and began their venture in 1991. The company’s first projects involved producing bituminous
cold mix piles for projects throughout the province. This material is used to help maintain roads
around the province as it is workable at lower temperatures.
“The company’s success in the early days was built on hard work, efficiency and productivity
in a limited Saskatchewan paving season,” Safronetz said. “When most companies in the industry
would lay off workers during the winter months, H.J.R. spent that time focusing on tearing down
and rebuilding their asphalt plants to increase efficiency, and to be able to move from jobsite to jobsite
PHOTO COURTESY OF HJR ASPHALT
24 Think BIG | Quarter 2 2019 | saskheavy.ca