AMJ Campbell, a household name for removals in Canada

Dec 13 | 2015

The company that became AMJ Campbell began trading in 1934 from a small provincial town north of Toronto in Canada, and its main business was with a nearby military base.

Back then the company was called MJ Campbell, the ‘A’ was added much later, in the 1970s by former Director Tim Moore, in an attempt to be first in the Yellow Pages’ listings. A forerunner to the race to be on page-one of Google.  

Whether or not the idea was successful is anyone’s guess, but since then AMJ Campbell has grown to be one of Canada’s most successful moving companies with over 40 franchises across the country and agents throughout the world.   

As well as coming up with the idea to change the name of the company, Tim was also responsible for creating the franchise model, which has enabled AMJ to expand across Canada and become a household name. Tom Finlay, General Manager at AMJ Worldwide Relocations in Vancouver said, “Through our franchise network we have a presence in most parts of Canada. In the areas where we don’t have an AMJ office, we have partnerships with quality agents to ensure that there isn’t a part of Canada we can’t service.” 

Tom’s career at AMJ began on the trucks when he was still at school to earn money to buy a car.  He continued working there through university and after completing his studies he took on brief roles in both domestic sales and operations before becoming the Office and Industrial Manager in 2005. After 10 years of running office moves, Tom took on his current role as general manager for AMJ Worldwide Relocations in April 2015. Tom’s father, also called Tom, is heavily involved in the industry as well. He, along with his business partner Kevan Brown, became the first AMJ franchise owners in 1983. Since then, Tom Sr. has become a partner in the franchisor and currently oversees AMJ’s franchises in Western Canada. Tom Sr. is also chairman of The Canadian Association of Movers, a role he’s held for the last two and a half years. 

Most of AMJ’s work is domestic removals, which accounts for around 55% of its business with a further 25% derived from the commercial sector. The remainder is international removals, which AMJ handles through its overseas agents, most of whom are fellow FIDI and OMNI members. AMJ has been a member of both organisations for many years and was the first mover in Canada to gain FAMI accreditation.  

As in most parts of the upper Northern Hemisphere, most of AMJ’s domestic moves take place during the summer months, but even in the depths of winter when temperatures regularly drop as low as – 20°C and heavy snow is an everyday occurrence, things keep on moving. “We’re used to dealing with snow in Canada so it rarely causes us any trouble,” said Tom. “As Canadians we prepare for the cold season and the local authorities are very good at keeping the roads clear, so our trucks usually don’t have a problem getting through.” 

While Tom runs AMJ Worldwide’s operations in the west of the country from the Vancouver office, Ole Jensen, a familiar figure at most of the industry’s international conferences, manages the company’s international business from AMJ’s head office in Toronto. 

With over 80 years’ experience in the moving industry and over 40 franchises throughout Canada, AMJ Campbell is ideally placed to handle international shipments to and from any location in Canada and welcomes enquiries from movers around the world. 

Photo:  Tom Finlay Senior and Tom Junior from AMJ Campbell in Vancouver 

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