From Humble Beginnings: Aries Contracting’s Founding Journey

Founded in 1993 by Keith Kennedy and Bob Shipley, both of whom were employed at a plastering company, Murphy and Morrow, during the 1980s and 90s. When that company confronted an impending recession, both Keith and Bob started on a new adventure and were given an old plaster pump as a parting gift that would eventually launch their future in the fireproofing industry. Aries Contracting was thus created in April 1993, being astrologically an Aries, the company’s April inception justified the name.

Mastering Stucco: Building Lasting Legacies in Ottawa

The company’s roots lie in stucco and plastering, skills honed during their tenure at Murphy and Morrow. The initial projects Aries secured in the early 90s were predominantly centered around stucco. Keith was committed to offering stucco systems with a lasting impact. Despite its popularity at the time, improper application by many led to negative reputation. Aries seized this opportunity to excel. By the late 90s, we were extensively engaged in stucco/EIFS repairs citywide, especially in historic neighborhoods like Old Ottawa South and the Glebe. Even today, Keith can point out the homes he meticulously restored during that era.


In 2001, Keith’s decision to revamp the old plaster pump acquired from Murphy and Morrow marked a pivotal moment. Venturing into fireproofing, he partnered with Cafco Industries, a fireproofing manufacturer, and a seasoned representative in Toronto. This collaboration acknowledged Aries’ potential and aimed to introduce us to this new realm.


By 2013, during the Landsdowne Park redevelopment project, Aries secured not just the tender for stadium rehabilitation, but ALL the new buildings. This success firmly established our position in the fireproofing arena. Despite intricate changes, we completed the stadium on schedule, alongside all new constructions.

Innovative Excellence: Pushing Boundaries in Ottawa’s Construction Landscape

A significant undertaking in Ottawa involved engineering, supplying, and installing nearly 5,000 square feet of carbon fiber reinforcement to a 10-story building that underwent a substantial occupancy change and stringent lox requirements. In addition, we developed a fireproofing system, alongside the carbon fiber, that achieved a 2-hour rating, a milestone previously unattained in the Ottawa region.