Shortly after WWII, Hugh Lowe and Chuck Golicky started Certified Auto Radio as an automotive electronics service shop with one bay in downtown Edmonton. In 1967, Bent Jensen joined the company as a technician apprentice.
In 1971, Hugh & Chuck were ready to retire, so young apprentice Bent and the technician, Byron “Buzz” Zinger, bought the company. In 1972, Certified Radio expanded into sales, and opened the now historic location at 107 Avenue and 104 Street. This new location boasted both a sales and service department, with three bays.
By 1982, the success of Certified Radio allowed Bent and Buzz to form an umbrella company that they called B&B Electronics Ltd. Bent, the president, and Buzz, the executive treasurer, moved to the iconic Whyte Avenue location and started to expand into distribution sales.
Throughout the decades the B&B group of companies continued to grow. In 1987, Bent’s brother, Ole Jensen, and long time employees, Murray Cusack and Al Kucinkas, came on board as partners. Sadly, Buzz passed away the following year. In 1997, Mike Hamilton and Bent’s youngest brother, Kim Jensen, bought in as well, and eventually Al Kucinkas moved on. In 2006, Bent’s son, Bent Jensen Jr., and long time employees, Kelly Cooley and Alvin Dixon, also became partners.
B&B Electronics survived the recession of the 1980’s, and in 1994, expanded into home automation. By 2006, this prosperous division evolved into a company in its own right, Certified Automation, providing sales, service and installation to builders, home owners, and retail shoppers of home theatre, security and automation products.
After over 40 years servicing automobile manufacturers, in 1999 the Certified Radio service centre was certified to ISO 9002 and QS 9002 quality operating standards. In 2000, they earned Ford’s Q1 award and certified in the ISO/TS 16949:2002 quality operating system from 2003 until June 2008, when Ford/Visteon closed the majority of their North American service centres.
In addition to having the distinction of being the only remanufacturing centre in North America to achieve this standard, the improvements in service quality and efficiency enabled Certified Radio to consistently deliver better products and service to their customers.
Launched in 2004, by the next generation (Bent Jensen Jr. and Liam Cusack), Certified Tracking Solutions (CTS) has quickly become leaders in their industry and is partnered with wireless providers such as Rogers Wireless, Iridium and Globalstar. CTS’s products range from specialized telematics GPS fleet management solutions to consumer based GPS tracking and smartphone vehicle messaging systems.
Certified Radio’s historic north side location was eventually closed in 2010, and a new location was opened in the west end in 2007. This very modern building features an expansive showroom and 10 install bays.
In June of 2010, B&B Electronics moved its warehouse to the west end, to accommodate an ever-increasing array of product lines. Their departure from the Whyte Avenue location allowed both CTS and Certified Radio South to expand their operations, resulting in a new tinting division for Certified Radio.
B&B Electronics has been described as a family-based business. Family members and friends of all partners and employees find themselves working here at one point or another. B&B has also been lucky enough to have valued employees that have spent decades with the company; many consider themselves “lifers”! B&B is a company with a history of growth and expansion, and has weathered both the recession of the 80’s, and the boom & bust of the 2000’s. With so many positive changes in recent years, there is every indication that the B&B Electronics group of companies will continue to prosper in many exciting avenues. We are always on the lookout for new and innovative products to distribute!