Case Studies

Koenig Iron Works Inc.

Third-generation family-owned business

Koenig Iron Works Inc.‘s (Koenig) long-standing commitment to quality and craftsmanship over the past century has allowed it not only to survive, but to thrive and become an established, premiere structural and miscellaneous steel fabricator and erector. Koenig offers a full range of steel construction services and continues to maintain the same high standards and individual attention its clients have come to expect since it opened its doors in 1907.

Founded 107 years ago in New York City by Isidore Leistner, grandfather to current president and CEO, Barry Leistner, Koenig has remained a family-owned business for three generations. Barry, who grew up working in the family-owned shop, has over 40 years of experience in all phases of construction, including an extensive background in the estimation, design, fabrication, and erection of structural and miscellaneous steel.

Throughout the years, Koenig has become a leader in the use of technology and innovation in providing a full range of steel construction services and products manufactured to exacting engineering standards and strives to complete projects with its clients’ needs in mind.

Full range of steel services

Headquarted in New York City, Koenig employs nearly 100 workers and generates $25 million in annual revenue. Koenig is one of the leading steel fabrication firms in the tri-state area of Connecticut, New Jersey and New York. The company targets commercial, residential and industrial sectors, as well as some government agencies.

Many of New York’s leading architects, engineers, real estate developers, institutions, general contractors and private building owners depend on Koenig for the company’s structural steel fabrication, stairs and railings, artisan blacksmithing and miscellaneous iron work. The company’s specialties also include expertise in new construction, repair and renovation work, field erection, cost and design estimates, as well as project planning and safety.

Koenig self-performs most projects from start to finish, including design, fabrication and installation. “We are a vertical business,” details Barry. “Each project begins with our design team who uses TEKLA modeling software that interfaces with our fabrication machines to produce structural steel. High-end ornamental metal, steel stairs and railings are done in our shop by skilled artisans. Once our materials are ready, we do our own installations and send project managers to work with the general contractor or owner to ensure the job is done correctly and up to our standards. While we try to complete as much work as we can in-house, we subcontract out work, like cranes and some fabrication, in order to get the job done efficiently. As a schedule-driven business, it’s important we stay on task for both our team and our clients.”

Serving the tri-state area

Since its conception, Koenig has continued its tradition of exacting work and demanding standards while expanding the company’s capabilities and client base. Due to Koenig’s rich legacy of dependability and quality craftsmanship, one of the company’s original customers, Columbia University, still remains a valued client today.

In New York, Koenig has recently completed several projects, including the world’s largest H&M, measuring 57,000 square feet, on Fifth Avenue in New York City; the ground-up renovation of a three tower high-rise in Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass (DUMBO), Brooklyn; and a complete renovation for the 280 Park Avenue building in New York City.

Koenig has also been busy outside of the city working with real estate private equity, development and property management firm Building and Land Technology Developer in Stamford, Conn. A repeat customer of the company, Koenig has recently completed two large projects for Building and Land Technology Developer, as well as eight other projects over the past few years.

Positive future outlook

Like most businesses, Koenig has experienced highs and lows, but the company is one of the few who persevered through America’s toughest economic times, including the Wall Street Crash of 1929, the Great Depression and the Great Recession of 2008.

“The recession hit us hard; 2011 and 2012 were the worst years I can remember,” says Barry. “We were forced to reduce costs and streamline operations. It wasn’t easy, but we got through it by pricing competitively and maintaining our relationships.” The company’s history tells a story of excellence and perseverance under any economic conditions.

Koenig’s focus on quality craftsmanship and customer service earned the company long-term customers and vendors, as well as employees who have begun and ended their careers with Koenig. “Our history in the industry and our commitment to customer service gives me great pride and makes me comfortable to say, that Koenig is one of the leading shops in the tri-state area,” Barry says.

With a full backlog of work leading the company into 2015, Koenig Iron Works Inc. has a positive future outlook and hopes to grow over the next few years.

Published on: April 3, 2015


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