Case Studies

B.R. Johnson Inc.

Window and Door Specialists Building a Niche in the Northeast
  • Written by: Jeanee Dudley
  • Produced by: B.R. Johnson Inc.
  • Estimated reading time: 3 mins

In 2013, B.R. Johnson Inc. (BRJ) is celebrating 85 years of unique, high-quality construction services. The fenestration materials supplier and installation business began in 1928, founded by Ben Johnson.

The company has expanded significantly over the decades and has become a leading, mid-sized supplier and contractor specializing in windows, doors, framing and hardware. Tony Minieri, vice president of sales at BRJ, has been with the business since 1977, partnering with Bill Harfosh, president, Mike Howards, vice president of the company’s window division, and Art Brillianti, vice president of commercial door sales.

The company’s management team brings decades of experience to BRJ’s leadership, resulting in strong, diverse services and a knowledgeable sales team. “Our company has a very diverse product mix,” Minieri explains. “We offer complete window and door services for new and existing buildings. Generally, most of our commercial door and hardware competitors do not sell windows, and vice versa.  Most space-division competitors are not involved with either doors or windows.  We offer a much more thorough product mix than virtually any one in the industry.”

A Strong Team

With a main office in Syracuse, N.Y., BRJ is able to serve clients all over central and upstate New York. A satellite division in Rochester provides a sales presence to the west. On average, the crew consists of 80 people year-round, with a slight increase during the busy summer months. “We fabricate, prepare, and assemble the majority of our own material,” Minieri notes. “90 percent of our installation services are performed in house.

“Traditionally, we have been strongest in providing windows, doors, hardware, and partitions for school projects, college work including dormitories, health care, hotels, private development, and energy management projects,” he continues. “We have been involved in a number of unique projects across the state over the years. We recently completed the Eastman and Mohawk Towers at State University of New York (SUNY) Albany. There are two high window replacement projects being executed there this summer. We worked closely with the project architect to have a product that met the performance and aesthetic requirements of the job.

“In the new Academic Building at SUNY Brockport we are furnishing a variety of space division products,” he continues. “That will include two stepped, Skyfold folding partitions that rise into the ceiling in an auditorium, two classroom partitions by Modernfold, and a fire-rated partition by Wondor. In a similar vein, we also just completed the furnishing and installation of unique curtain-wall openings at the Turningstone Casino’s restaurant and entertainment facilities in Verona, N.Y. We are also providing a wide variety of custom doors, commercial doors, frames and hardware.”

When One Door Closes…

While the recession took a toll on a number of contractors over the last five years, BRJ is going strong. The team has already set up a strong backlog and continues to diversify services to meet the changing needs of clients. “We are continuing to grow in three primary areas of the business,” Minieri elaborates. “Our after-market door and hardware business supports the immediate needs of facilities where we provided product services in the past, such as hospitals, schools, government buildings, businesses, and emergency repairs. We are also developing our division for electronic security and access control.  We have recently been named a Stanley-Best service center, which has allowed us to increase our customer base of end users needing services related to that family of products. Our curtain-wall and custom glazing applications are seeing a growing demand. Our ability to help design professionals has been instrumental in offering unique solutions to this segment of the industry.”

A strong network of suppliers and subcontractors offer unending support to the business. While most work is performed in-house, BRJ relies on abatement, painting and erector subs when the project calls for it. The company’s access and supplier certifications make the team qualified for jobs in a range of sizes and scopes. These capabilities continue to draw in new clients and support relationships with repeat customers, such as the SUNY system.

In 2013, BRJ is celebrating 85 years in business. With highly qualified leadership and labor, the business has established a competitive edge in the market. The crew has a number of complex projects in the pipeline, and will continue to work collaboratively with strategic partners, clients and suppliers to meet unique end-user needs. From Buffalo to Saratoga, BR Johnson Inc. Provides high quality products, backed up with experience and professionalism that stands out from the competition.

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Spring 2018



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