Our Story

Pillar Lasers Inc. is a western canadian manufacturer of specialized agriculture equipment.

Originally, Pillar was a welding and custom manufacturing business that was started in January of 2003. The company operated out of an acreage shop north of Saskatoon. Pillar Lasers Inc. began welding fixtures and manufacturing support items for several agricultural manufacturers, as well as general fabrication. In the spring of 2005, the current partnership was started and on July 1 of 2005 Pillar Lasers Inc. was incorporated and purchased a 4KW Mazak laser with a load/unload automation system plus a 200-ton CNC break press which was installed in our current location in Warman, Saskatchewan. In January of 2008 we purchased the land and building in Warman and moved all our operations there.

In 2008, Pillar Lasers Inc. was issued a Canadian Patent on the Pillar Disc Hoe Opener and started manufacturing that year. The company invests in research and development to continually innovate and improve agricultural equipment, along with many different manufacturing support items. The company has built a reputation for building quality farm equipment such as Disc Hoe Openers, Pillar Toolbars, and the Pillar Heavy Harrow. Pillar also provides custom manufacturing services for different customers in North America.

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Our Team

Dick Friesen

President & General Manager

Dick has been in the fabricating and manufacturing atmosphere for most of his working career. The 8 years that he spent at Flexi-Coil working in research and development gave him valuable knowledge in product development as well as manufacturing. Dick spent a good portion of this time working on the Barton disc opener and was involved in most of the development at that time. After leaving Flexi-Coil, he started his own business Pillar Welding and Machine. They designed and built weld fixtures, as well as many different manufacturing support items for several Ag Manufacturers. It was during this time that Dick was approached by Hugh Barton (the inventor of the Barton Disc Opener) about redesigning the disc opener and developing a double shoot system that would work on a single disc. After several years and many different prototypes, the current design of the Disc Hoe Opener was ready for production. Dick leads the design team at Pillar which has designed and produced the Disc Hoe Opener, Pillar toolbars and the most resent the Pillar Heavy Harrow.  Dick enjoys spending time with family camping, fishing, hunting as well as other outdoor activities.

John Martens

Partner/Laser operations

John has worked in the farm implement manufacturing sector and metal fab for 31 yrs. Starting just out of school at CNH (Flexi-coil). His last 7 years at CNH was spent working with engineering, designing and developing new products for production.

In 2005 John and his partners started Pillar Lasers Inc. By using all the combined experience, Pillar has developed its own line of farm equipment. John now manages the laser cutting division of Pillar and continues to consult on the design of existing and new Pillar products.

Bill Froese

Partner/Purchasing, Financial operations

Bill is a partner in Pillar Lasers Inc. His background has been in the construction industry starting in 1979 as an employee, then manager and successfully owned and operated the business for approximately 12 years. As part of the management team, Bill brings his business knowledge to Pillar Lasers Inc.

Jody Derocher

Sales Manager, Alberta

Jody is an outgoing marketing and salesperson with focus on the goal. He enjoys new challenges and has the drive and the background to see them through to the end. He has a strong mechanical background that helps him understand equipment and helps assist customers in making confident purchases. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Agronomy and Crop Science as well as 3rd year Auto Mechanic. He enjoys traveling, and meeting new people. Building Cars, volunteering, and hockey.

JoHn Gibson

Sales & Marketing Manager

With experience in both Eastern and Western Canada brings a unique background to the Pillar Team. Growing up close to farm roots in Belleville ON, then headed to University of Guelph earning a B.Sc. Ag. and Master’s degree in Ag. Business. Early career days were spent with UCO/GROWMARK in Ontario, then moving to Saskatchewan focused on positioning fertility and crop protection products with channel partners. Always passionate about improving agronomics/economics for growers this ultimately led to him joining Pillar. Being able to provide growers with improved seeding tools for high residue conditions while offering industry leading seed/fertilizer placement is an extremely exciting opportunity.

Sandie Ginther

Sales Administration

Sandie is a confident Sales Administrator who joined Pillar in Feb 2023. She enjoys working with the Sales Team and customers. She is certified in Tradeshow Marketing Management and enjoys organizing and planning tradeshows, making videos, arranging air seeder demonstrations, and maintaining social media platforms. Sandie’s experience with working in customer service has assisted her in maintaining our customer sales database. In her spare time, she enjoys snowmobiling, baking, and crafts.

Jolie Woodrow

Human Resources & Accounting

Jolie is a dedicated employee focused on looking after our staff and customer needs. She ensures all business accounting procedures and human resource needs are managed with great attention. She brought ambition and experience to our company in November of 2016 and continues to complement Pillar’s desire to sustain policies and procedures to run a solid, respectful company. Jolie’s education is in Management, and has been working in the Agriculture Industry for 18 years. She enjoys health & wellness, watching hockey, sunny beaches and especially her time spent with family & friends.

Matt Loewen

Shop Foreman

Matt is a dependable Shop Forman & Workflow Manager who grew up on a farm north of Saskatoon. He started welding in high school, joined Pillar in 2011 and is confident in welding and fabricating aluminum, stainless steel and mild steel products. During Matt’s 25 years in the field, he has found enjoyment in the Research and Development side of his employment and is honored to be a part of some trusted products here at Pillar. When Matt is not at work, you will often find him on his motorcycle or his vintage car, in the shop repairing and restoring vehicles, fishing, camping and enjoying his family.

Dan Martens

Parts, Service & Purchasing

Dan has been in the metal manufacturing and fabrication industry since 1992. He obtained his red seal for machining in 1999 and was hired at Pillar in 2004. Dan enjoys country living, spending time with family and friends, camping, fishing, hunting and mechanics.

Customer Testimonial

I have used Pillar Laser openers for the past 5 years on 3 different drill frames. The sidebanding scraper allows for adjustable seed and fertilizer separation and provides an effective way to reduce or eliminate hairpinning in the seedrow. Coming from a single disc (Flexicoil 6000) I really noticed how the Pillar opener was able to cut through residue and place seed on a shelf with good soil contact. The coil spring provides adjustable downforce without extra hydraulic requirements so that a Pillar owner gets independent opener depth control without the need for a newer tractor with high flow hydraulics. The residue clearance of the opener with the deflector is very good. I grow flax and rye and harvest both with a stripper header and seed directly into the residue without any extra field operations.

To my operation, the Pillar opener is a very cost effective way of placing seed and fertilizer accurately in the soil in ideal and less than ideal moisture and residue conditions.

Andy Kirschenman

Hilda, AB