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Last Updated: 2012-10-02

Mentor Engineering Inc.

Company information

Logo  
 
Legal Name:   Mentor Engineering Inc.
Operating Name:   Mentor Engineering Inc.
 
Mailing Address
10 - 2175 - 29th St NE
CALGARY, Alberta
T1Y 7H8
Location Address
10 - 2175 - 29th St NE
CALGARY, Alberta
T1Y 7H8
 
Telephone: (403) 777-3760
Fax: (403) 777-3769
Email: sales@mentoreng.com
Website URL: http://www.mentoreng.com 
 
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Contact information

 
Mike Koebel
  Title:   Vice President
  Telephone:   (403) 777-3760
  Ext:   765
  Fax:   (403) 777-3769
  Email:   mkoebel@mentoreng.com
 
 
Jessica Parsons
  Title:   Marketing Coordinator
  Telephone:   (403) 777-3760
  Ext:   352
  Fax:   (403) 777-3769
  Email:   jparsons@mentoreng.com
 
 
Sheena Archer
  Title:   Director
  Telephone:   (403) 777-3760
  Ext:   234
  Fax:   (403) 777-3769
  Email:   sarcher@mentoreng.com
 

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Company description

 
From MDTs and driver behavior monitoring to passenger information and taxi dispatching systems, Mentor’s technology helps companies improve customer service, increase efficiency, streamline operations and complete more trips per day.

To match their cutting-edge technology, Mentor lives up to its motto “Systems That Work” with a complete range of implementation and support services. Whether it’s managing subcontractors, troubleshooting network issues or training drivers on new technology, Mentor’s experienced engineers provide you with 24/7 service that you can count on.

Based in Calgary, Alberta, Mentor builds all of our products in house which means we have complete control over the manufacturing process to guarantee high quality. However, with over 65,000 devices in the field, the durability of Mentor’s products speak for themselves. With 145 employees, Mentor can provide the products and service to revolutionize your organization’s operations.
 
Country of Ownership: Canada  
Year Established: 1988
Exporting: Yes  
Primary Industry (NAICS): 334110 - Computer and Peripheral Equipment Manufacturing
Alternate Industries (NAICS): 541510 - Computer Systems Design and Related Services
Primary Business Activity: Manufacturer / Processor / Producer  
Total Sales ($CDN): $10,000,000 to $24,999,999 
Export Sales ($CDN): $10,000,000 to $24,999,999 
Number of Employees: 125 

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Product / Service / Licensing

 
Product Name: BBX
 
Mentor’s BBX is a standalone Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL) and telematic data collection device. BBX provides accurate vehicle location through its built-in, 16-channel GPS receiver. Additionally, it has multiple inputs and outputs and can interface to emergency switches, temperature sensors, fuel disablers, and other vehicle components, allowing you to monitor and collect a variety of telematic data. A highly programmable device, BBX can also monitor your fleet’s fuel consumption and notify drivers of inappropriate behaviors via idling and speeding alarms.

 
Product Name: Mentor Fleet
 
Mentor Fleet is a mobile field services management solution that puts vehicle management and driver monitoring at your fingertips. Tailored to each organization’s unique business environment, Mentor Fleet delivers Automatic Vehicle Location (AVL/GPS), vehicle telematics, driver behavior monitoring, reporting and maintenance capabilities. Accessing the power of "in the cloud" computing, Fleet saves upfront deployment costs, while giving paratransit agencies the power to streamline operations right from the desktop. Gain answers and insight to these essential questions: Where are my vehicles? Where were my vehicles? What are my drivers doing? When do my vehicles need servicing and how is my fleet performing?

 
Product Name: Mentor IntelliFleet
 
Mentor IntelliFleet® Built by the taxi industry for the taxi industry, Mentor IntelliFleet® is a complete taxi dispatching solution with modules that work to free dispatcher time, improve communication and reporting accuracy, facilitate instant financial transactions, speed service and more. IntelliFleet is highly scalable and designed in a modular fashion, so you can choose the software components that are best suited to your taxi operation, and add modules as needed.

 
Product Name: Mentor MyRide™
 
Today’s passengers want transit information at their fingertips, and available in an instant. Mentor MyRide™ is a passenger information system that makes real-time bus location and status information available to riders any time and from anywhere. From real-time maps and bus departure information to trip planning and SMS, MyRide enhances your customer service. By integrating MyRide into a transit operation, passengers can access real-time bus departures and get instant map updates. Additionally, with the system, passengers can text message the agency from any bus stop to receive the departure times of the next few buses leaving that stop. MyRide integrates with Google™ Maps for easy trip planning, and passengers can create rider accounts to receive automatic alerts for specific routes and stops, when they want them. Alerts are sent out via SMS text message or email, giving riders up to the minute information just as they are walking out the door to catch the bus.

 
Product Name: Mentor Ranger®
 
Mentor Ranger is a rugged in-vehicle mobile data terminal that streamlines mobile work management by connecting the vehicle and the office. Ranger supports voice and data communications, GPS vehicle tracking and vehicle telemetry. Ranger facilitates real-time electronic dispatching and two-way communication, as well as integrating cell phone capabilities to provide a voice solution for your fleet. The automatic capture of login times, job completion details, and more eliminates multiple points of data entry to simplify workflow and reduce costs. In-vehicle navigation helps drivers quickly reach their destination, improving response times and lowering fuel consumption. Ranger collects standard GPS-based vehicle tracking data, but then goes further to deliver even more. It collects and reports on driver behavior such as speeding or excessive idling to improve fuel efficiency and increase safety.

 
Product Name: Mentor Ranger® for Oil and Gas
 
Mentor Ranger® rugged in-vehicle computers are the backbone of the Field Service technology solution. They connect the fleet with the office, enable more efficient communication and collect data automatically. Take your operation to new levels of effectiveness with Mentor Mobility mobile application software that runs on mobile devices like Ranger. Together Ranger and Mobility offer field operators in-vehicle navigation, on-screen form fills, two-way electronic data messaging, and more. Ranger and Mobility deliver job-related instructions to the field worker and capture login times and equipment codes for accurate job costing.

 
Product Name: Mentor Ranger SDK
 
If organizations wish to develop their own applications for Ranger, Mentor provides an extremely comprehensive SDK for developer support. Currently installed and operational in thousands of Mentor Rangers, Mentor’s SDK is your competitive advantage when deploying rugged mobile terminals for fleet-based applications. It gives you versatile development environment, simplifies your deployment, and hastens your development time.

 
Product Name: Mentor Streets®
 
Mentor Streets® is a fully integrated Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) solution that helps transit agencies manage all aspects of their operation. Modularly-designed, Streets’ components work together to make agencies more efficient, streamline operations and keep buses on schedule. Streets provides CAD/AVL functionality which allows dispatchers to see the location and status of all buses in real-time, communicate instantly with drivers and track the roadworthy status of every vehicle. Events ranging from schedule and route deviations to speeding and idling, accidents and driver emergencies are managed effortlessly with Streets; address and street look up features allow call-takers to quickly and accurately respond to 'Where's my bus?' questions.

 
Product Name: Mentor Streets® Schedule
 
The Mentor Streets® Schedule software suite eliminates slow, inefficient manual processes and simplifies schedule creation. Streets Schedule is a cost-effective scheduling option and can work as stand-alone software or as a building block to a complete ITS Solution. Mentor's scheduling software guides you through every step of the scheduling process, from plotting bus stops, cutting runs, and assigning drivers to generating paddles. Once the schedule is complete it can be exported to Google™ Maps with a single click.

 
Product Name: Mentor T-Box®
 
T-Box® is a sophisticated annunciator that announces accurate and timely next-stop information to your riders. Inside the bus, T-Box provides voice announcements and updates onboard LED signs for riders which can be updated wirelessly. Outside the bus, T-Box identifies the route and destination to passengers waiting at a stop when the doors open. Simple to use, T-Box speaks phrases entered via a text file in English, French, or Spanish, saving agencies time and money on recording studios and voice talent. Agencies can preview and fine-tune pronunciations, or use pre-recorded .WAV files. T-Box also monitors ambient noise in the bus and self-adjusts speaker volume to ensure your message is always heard.

 
Product Name: P-7 Hub
 
This self-powered hub dramatically boosts connectivity to other on-board devices. With the Hub’s multiple USB serial ports and general purpose I/O, you can connect Ranger to a wide range of peripheral devices, including RF ID systems, printers, bar code readers, engine diagnostics, temperature sensors, taximeters, door alarms, speed sensors and much more. The P7Hub is also water resistant, with a strain relief/ locking cable system to ensure secure connectivity.

 
Product Name: Streets® Reports
 
Know exactly what’s happening everywhere in your operation with customizable reports including NTD, on-time performance, schedule adherence, vehicle location, and idling reports. These reports can be integrated with your in-house report writing tool, and you can correlate actual events with scheduled routes and events. View historical driver/vehicle activity data, and automatically process and email reports to the appropriate personnel.

 
Product Name: Work Alone Pendant
 
Keeping lone workers safe in the field is critically important and yet poses significant challenges as well. Equipping field operators with an intrinsically-safe work-alone pendant allows them to maintain contact with the office when working away from the vehicle. The pendant can be activated by clicking the button at pre-determined times to send an 'okay' status to the office. The office is automatically alerted if the pendant has been motionless for a specified amount of time or if an operator misses a scheduled check-in. Once an alert is triggered, the escalation path is customizable.

 
Product Name: XGate®
 
XGate® is a complete message management and communications interface for your mobile data system. XGate® interfaces with your in-vehicle mobile application, and virtually any wireless network to send messages to and from the host application. Offering a highly compressed data format to reduce your airtime costs, XGate® is an exceptional middleware solution that is rigorously proven and constantly refined. In fact, Mentor’s clients have benefited from this trusted technology for more than 12 years.

 
Product Name: XMobile Manager (XMM)
 
XMobile Manager is a sophisticated, easy-to-use software suite that tracks and programs mobile computing devices over the air. No longer held captive by the time-consuming task of updating each unit individually, or the confusion of not knowing which units contain what programs, XMM puts these capabilities at your fingertips. In addition, XMM also provides a robust set of diagnostic features for troubleshooting deployed applications.

 

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Technology profile

From MDTs and driver behavior monitoring to passenger information and taxi dispatching systems, Mentor’s technology helps companies improve customer service, increase efficiency, streamline operations and complete more trips per day.

To match their cutting-edge technology, Mentor lives up to its motto “Systems That Work” with a complete range of implementation and support services. Whether it’s managing subcontractors, troubleshooting network issues or training drivers on new technology, Mentor’s experienced engineers provide you with 24/7 service that you can count on.

Based in Calgary, Alberta, Mentor builds all of our products in house which means we have complete control over the manufacturing process to guarantee high quality. However, with over 65,000 devices in the field, the durability of Mentor’s products speak for themselves. With 145 employees, Mentor can provide the products and service to revolutionize your organization’s operations.



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Market profile

Alliances:

  • Sales/Marketing
  • Technology

Strategic alliances:

We are always looking for software partners (computer aided dispatch, automatic vehicle location), as well as Value Added Resellers (VARs).

Industry sector market interests:

  • Information Technology and Telecommunications
  • Transportation

Geographic markets:

Export experience:
  • Australia
  • Brazil
  • Mexico
  • Netherlands
  • United Kingdom
  • United States

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Sector information

Total plant size:

12,000

Key / Major clients:

Blacksburg Transit, LYNX, Metro Bus St. Cloud, The HOP, York Region Transit, Access Calgary, American Automobile Association, Canadian Automobile Association, Alberta Co-op Taxi, Checker Cabs (Calgary), Bi-State Development Agency, MTA Baltimore, Paratransit Inc, Spokane Transit Authority, Cape Cod Regional Transit Authority, MTA Long Island Bus, Ben Franklin Transit, Battle Creek Transit,
Burlington Taxi, City of Albuquerque, City of Charlotte

Success stories:

York Region Transit, Mobility Plus
Enhanced Vehicle Use for More Responsive Paratransit Service

York Region Transit (YRT) serves the transit needs of residents in the nine municipalities of York Region, Ontario. For riders unable to access regular transit due to limited mobility or disability, YRT offers Mobility Plus paratransit service. Mobility Plus connects riders with dedicated transit services in the City of Toronto, and surrounding districts.

Challenges:
Providing efficient paratransit service across an extensive service area is a demanding task. YRT wanted a solution that would improve transportation efficiency and improve response times to calls. Bogged down by manual data entry processes, YRT wanted to improve data collection and capture accurate rider information to enhance their reporting system.

Mentor’s Solution:
To help Mobility Plus achieve these goals, Mentor Engineering partnered with software solutions provider, TranSched Systems. As prime contractor, Mentor provided Mentor Ranger® in-vehicle computers with integrated GPS and wireless communications capabilities. Mentor’s Paratransit Mobility software, which runs on Mentor Ranger, provides the wireless delivery of work manifests with turn-by-turn navigation, and facilitates real-time status updates between drivers and dispatchers. Integrated GPS provides vehicle location tracking, while connection into the vehicle points allows for automatic collection of data such as odometer readings on a per passenger basis.

TranSched’s TransView CAD/AVL system was installed at the dispatch centre to provide a wide range of reservation, scheduling, dispatching and routing capabilities. YRT recently added an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system from Ontira Communications, a subsidiary of TranSched Systems. Using speech recognition technology, it allows riders to access trip information and automatically confirm or cancel trips 24 hours a day.

To facilitate the initial deployment and on-going system management and upgrades, Mentor utilized their over the air programming application that allows for all in-vehicle mobile computers to be managed from a central location.

Client Quote:
“The system at Mobility Plus is capable of rescheduling trips, and the beauty of the Mentor system is that trips can be added or modified instantly and updated on the driver’s electronic manifest without a lot of effort. Drivers no longer have to manually update their hand-written manifests.”
- Jen Lastname, Product Specialist, TranSched Systems

ROI:
• 24% increase in revenue trips per hour
• CO2 emissions reduced by approximately 57 kg in one month of operation
• At least a 50% improvement in time savings to provide traveler information to Mobility Plus clients
• Dispatching functions streamlined by at least 50%
• 35% plus time savings in scheduling same day trips
Client View:
York Region Transit’s (YRT’s) Mobility Plus operation has been providing specialized paratransit services to the York Region since January 1, 2001. Faced with increasing ridership numbers and an aging population, YRT needed a system to uphold their Mobility Plus mandate of providing efficient paratransit services. Looking to the future, a successful and effective technological system would give YRT a better grounding for future ITS deployments.

To meet the technology needs of Mobility Plus, Mentor Engineering and TranSched Systems combined aspects of their respective solutions. “We knew Mentor to be a strong player in the industry and that they have a history of successful implementations. We expected Mentor to come in and lead a good part of the project,” says Jen Lastname, Product Specialist at TranSched Systems.

Although YRT already had a Computer-Aided Dispatch/Automatic Vehicle Location (CAD/AVL) system in place on their fixed-route side, they were excited to bring a similar system to their Mobility Plus service. With Mentor Ranger® in the vehicles, and TranSched’s TransView CAD/AVL and scheduling software in the dispatch office, providing specialized transit service is uncomplicated and more efficient.

“With this system there is the flexibility for dispatchers to add an ad-hoc call to a route since they can see where all the buses are, and passenger safety has improved with the addition of security cameras and vehicle tracking,” explains Rajeev Roy, Manager of Transit Management Services at YRT.

Rajeev can see how this technology positively impacts customer service provided to Mobility Plus riders. “When customers call to ask, ‘Why isn’t my ride here?’ dispatchers can instantly give them an accurate ETA, as they can see exactly where their ride is. Before the dispatcher would have to conduct a series of calls to get this information to the customer,” explains Rajeev.

The implementation at Mobility Plus was completed in the spring of 2008, and since then the organization has realized improvements in incident response times, safety, trip scheduling and vehicle productivity. Even YRT’s environmental impact has been lessened by reducing the number of “deadhead” kilometers traveled by their vehicles.

As a result of bringing in the new system, YRT has seen their Mobility Plus operation benefit both qualitatively and quantitatively from the technology. Interviews with staff at YRT revealed that the solution provided at least a 35% time savings improvement in scheduling same-day trips. This is largely due to the availability of real-time information, and being able to directly transfer updated schedules to the in-vehicle computers.

Says Rajeev: “We did a survey of the staff who all agreed that service has improved. The vehicle tracking is definitely one of the most beneficial features and, from a management perspective, we also like that we can monitor driver’s speeds.”

Testimonial:

“Mentor’s equipment and software are “bulletproof”. We have never stopped the XGate software more than 3-4 times in the first five years of operations and those occurrences were unrelated to the software. The MDC units have held up extremely well in the harsh transit operations environment.”
- Tony Kellen, Director of Operations and Technology, St. Cloud Metro Bus


“Mentor Engineering is an excellent company. Simply stated, the products you purchase will work as advertised. Mentor is very customer focused and the relationships you establish are for the long term. Based on our past 12 years of experience, I give Mentor a strong recommendation.”
- Tony Kellen, Director of Operations and Technology, St. Cloud Metro Bus


“From the onset I’ve been very impressed with Mentor’s support staff. They were incredible during the implementation. Responsive and helpful in monitoring all aspects of the project, they are terrific to work with.”
- Paul Price, Transit Operations Support Supervisor, Arlington Handitran


“When customers call to ask, ‘Why isn’t my ride here?’ dispatchers can instantly give them an accurate ETA, as they can see exactly where their ride is. Before, the dispatcher would have to conduct a series of calls to get this information to the customer.”
- Rajeev Roy, Manager of Transit Management Services, York Region Transit (YRT)


“Having an ITS solution has been an integral part to handling this growth. We have no idea how we ever operated before we had this system. We’re doing the highest volume of service we’ve ever done in the history of the program and I think that the quality has maintained and actually grown through the use of this technology.”
- Paul Strobis, Assistant Manager, Paratransit Contract Operations, MBTA THE RIDE

“This technology helps us deal with the rising price of gas by reducing idle time for drivers. For example, if there is an accident on the expressway, dispatchers can instantly see which buses are going to be affected by viewing the AVL map and can re-route those drivers so they aren’t stuck idling.”
- David Burnett, Deputy Chief of Operations, Central Florida Regional Transportation Authority (LYNX)

“About a year ago we did an analysis of phone traffic going in and out of our Help Desk. To our surprise, we learned that about 30% of the traffic was attributed to Help Desk attendants dispatching service calls to Field Technicians…As such, we went in search of a way to automate and simplify this process.”
- James Parks, Manager of Integrated Support Services, Pason Systems Corp.


“We see real-time hours and know where every piece of equipment is. We’re billing the real deal. Our HR department knows who worked when and can verify that information. We’ve gone from having two people whose full-time job was reviewing job codes and hours worked, to this being only one part of one person’s job.”
- Holly Goulard, Controller, Keystone Excavating Ltd.


“With this technology, we are able to very accurately predict how much time it will take to complete a job. Customers then know what to expect. There is an industry standard to charge a minimum number of hours per job, but we have been able to eliminate this as we are much more efficient now. If everything was status quo with the economy, I expect we would be saving between $50,000 and $100,000 per year.”
- Rick Mayer, Owner and President, Island Pumping

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