Jasper Contractors Inc.
- Written by: Eric Gundberg
- Produced by: Victor Martins
- Estimated reading time: 3 mins
In recent years, there’s no denying that the U.S. has been suffering from pretty severe weather. In 2011 alone we had several tornados that destroyed southern towns, a hurricane that swept up the east coast and an earthquake just a couple of months after that. It’s harsh to say, but considering that the economic downturn has pretty much shut down the construction industry, rebuilding after Mother Nature’s fury has been one of the sole spots of activity in the industry. One company in particular, Jasper Contractors Inc. (JCI), modified its business plan to help the towns and communities that have experienced severe weather, and JCI has actually grown exponentially in spite of the economy.
Brian Wedding, CEO of JCI, explains how the company found its niche. “I had been in framing and roofing for residential projects for many years and I formed Jasper in ’04. At that time, Florida was hit by four hurricanes and I was asked by a colleague to him help repair 48 condos in Pensacola that needed to be re-roofed. We went down to help on that project and things just snowballed from there. We started working with the insurance companies and it turned into a big business.”
The Baton Rouge, La., based company has now expanded into offices across the U.S. JCI has locations in: Evansville, Ind., Atlanta, Ga., New Orleans, La., Chicago, Ill., Phoenix, Ariz., Cincinnati, Ohio, Salt Lake City, Utah, and Denver, Colo. The company employs roughly 200 personnel, and Wedding estimates that JCI grossed over $50 million in revenue in 2011.
Attractive Salary and Benefits Draw High-quality Workforce
“We are just built for high volume,” Wedding has been quoted as saying. “With us being able to present attractive salaries and complete healthcare and benefits, we have been able to attract a high-quality workforce, which is allowing us to expand right now,” he says. “And we’re demanding. We’re demanding on construction crews, on the people who are out there selling, on our administration… we run a tight ship.”
Wedding anticipates even faster growth in the upcoming years using his unique “National Football League” rule. “If you’re able to sustain an NFL team, we’re pretty confident that enough is going on in the city so it is able to sustain us. We have our own fleet of vehicles and we can’t go to Daytona Beach and make that work, but Miami and Orlando are places where we can thrive. Once we go into a city and spend money on advertising and corporate branding, we want to stay there permanently.”
Plans to Expand in Western Market
In a time when most companies are struggling to stay open, Wedding’s biggest challenge is hiring qualified employees. “With the way the media portrays the current economy, it’s actually pretty surprising that we have to search as much as we do for new employees. We plan on expanding into Los Angeles and Las Vegas in 2012. That’s our biggest challenge, finding new people.”
The company’s volume of work in 2011 has been expansive. As of November 2011, JCI’s crews had completed over 15 million square feet of roofing. “Depending on how the weather cooperates in Cincinnati, we’re hoping to close out 2011 with over 20 million square feet completed,” continues Wedding.
Part of JCI’s explosive growth can be explained by the above average customer service the company delivers to potential clients. JCI offers clients a no-cost roof inspection, help navigating insurance claims, which is delivered with superb customer service and highly-trained, highly-skilled roof installers on every job.
Although JCI has made post hurricane cleanup work its bread and butter, the company specializes in all insurance claim related work including: hail damage, rain, wind, snow and ice damage, tree damage as well as missing and torn shingles. As experts in the requirements, building codes and overall process used by insurance companies, JCI has built a business on its unique level of specialization and expertise.
Whatever the cause of recent natural disasters, Brian Wedding and JCI have carved out a niche for themselves by helping homeowners get their roofs repaired quickly and with high-quality materials and workmanship. At the company’s current rate of growth, Jasper Contractors Inc. will soon be a name that is known nationwide.
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