W.C. “Bert” Wood was a gifted engineer with a keen business mind. When he found himself out of work in the Great Depression, he started his own company and designed several agricultural innovations. The W.C. Wood Company grew quickly, and Guelph was a logical move as the business expanded: it was the centre of Ontario agriculture, property was economical, and workers were available. More so, Guelph was a beautiful community for Bert’s young family.
The company purchased its first Guelph property at 123 Woolwich Street on the Speed River in 1941. The next 60 years saw consistent growth and innovation and included a transition in leadership to Bert’s son John F. Wood in the 1970s.
W.C. Wood Company became a global pioneer in the design and manufacture of home appliances, water heaters, agricultural machinery and more. The company employed thousands of families in Guelph. John and Barbara Wood cared deeply for the wellbeing of their staff, frequently donated to community causes and volunteered with local charities.
Along the way, the Wood family acquired several Guelph and area properties as investments, and to meet the potential future needs of the business. These property holdings served as the foundation for a new enterprise, Wood Development Group, which started as Coldpoint Holdings Ltd..
Wood Development Group remains a family business and is owned by David Wood and Susan Frasson, John’s children, with Susan serving as the company’s president and leading the daily operations. Supported by a skilled staff team, business and community partners, Wood Development Group continues to honour their family’s legacy and help develop the community where they were been born and raised, have built lifelong friendships and professional relationships.
The company has led several developments in Guelph and Wellington County that have enriched the community with signature neighbourhoods and essential public spaces like libraries and medical centres. Their projects honour the family’s values to respect the environment and balance the bottom line with a commitment to creating community spaces and neighbourhoods where people come first.