Three Decades of Success for Alumaline’s Greg Samaras
Greg Samaras has been in the business of window installation for almost three decades. Against intense competition, his New York-based company Alumaline has blossomed, taking on large projects and clients, who time and again, have become satisfied customers in a demanding market that increasingly commands energy efficiency.
“Back in 1987, I began doing window installations as a subcontractor for the dominant, bigger companies in New York City,” said Samaras. “At the time, the energy crisis was promoting property owners to replace their windows, and the industry was taking off.”
In 2001, Samaras was ready to branch out on his own. He partnered with a window manufacturer for a project in New Jersey, and, eventually, the projects started rolling in — and Alumaline took off.
Today, Alumaline caters to clients in both residential and commercial spaces. From replacing windows to designing and engineering curtain walls, Alumaline has contracted projects from Dumbo in Brooklyn to the busy streets of Manhattan.
One of the company’s major projects was the renovation for 10 53rd Street in New York City.
The key to his success over the years, Samaras said, has been to be personally involved in the projects his company works on. He credits this to his Greek background, which taught him a hard work ethic and a hands-on approach.
“I get involved with all of my projects personally,” he said. “I visit jobs on daily basis. Usually, owners of businesses hire people and give them responsibilities, and they let them oversee projects. I really get involved; I’m not comfortable unless I’m able to participate. When my client has questions for me, I’m able to answer their questions accurately and confidently because I was there.”
Samaras has also built valuable relationships with major players in the industry, including Alumil NA president Kyprianos Bazenikas.
“[Kyprianos] and I were introduced approximately seven or eight years ago by a friend in the industry, and I had heard about his company [Alumil],” he said. “I knew a lot of other individuals in the business who attempted to accomplish what Kyp did and it didn’t work out — but Kyp was very aggressive and determined to see success. We became friends and hoped to work together and build a professional relationship and, eventually, we completed our first project together in Woodbury, NY, for the headquarters of Arizona Ice Tea. It was an opportunity and an honor to work with a Greek company.”
Like Alumil, Alumaline wasn’t immune to the effects of the recent US recession, but it, too, was able to overcome the devastation felt by the industry and the economy as a whole.
“The industry is booming and that’s a thing of the past,” said Samaras. “Right now, Alumaline is doing phenomenal.”
Another challenge the company has been able to work past is its non-union status.
“The business we’re in has historically been union work, and my company is non-union, meaning it’s open shop,” he said. “And for a non-union company to perform this kind of work — substantial projects and small projects alike — in our niche field can be challenging. But Alumaline has been able to persevere.”
Samaras typically hires 40-45 employees per project, though this varies depending on the scope of the work required. The next step for him, he said, is to enhance his workforce. “Things are going well with the company, and I’m in the process of strategically hiring young employees who are specialists in the field so that I can hopefully begin temper my workload after 30+ years of hard work.”