Case Studies

Service Painting of Florida Inc.

Much More than Commercial Painting

Service Painting of Florida Inc. (SPF) is celebrating a big anniversary in 2012. “The company was founded in 1982,” says Gary Johnson, president of SPF. The painting and waterproofing company employs around 125 specialists, all of whom take pride in SPF’s esteemed reputation; this feeling is especially intense for Johnson, who has been with SPF since the beginning. Johnson came from Ohio, where he had maintained his own painting company for years before signing on with SPF.

SPF has offices in Fort Myers, Sarasota and Miami. “We cover the entire state of Florida,” Johnson details. The company has projects out of state, too. “We are currently doing jobs in North and South Carolina, Virginia and Louisiana,” he continues.

A little closer to home, SPF recently wrapped up the complete painting and waterproofing of the Boston Red Sox stadium in Fort Myers. The stadium, which has a capacity of 11,000 people, hosts the Red Sox spring training program. “That was a premier job,” Johnson says.

The project ran close to $60 million and took two years to complete. “There was a tremendous amount of caulking done in the stadium area, and we had to waterproof the common areas and the retail areas below the stadium,” Johnson elaborates.

“Another very high-end project we have is the Latter-Day Saints church in Miami,” he continues. SPF will paint and waterproof the church inside and out, including the high ceilings, gold leafing and basement, which is highly unusual in Florida.

SPF does much more than commercial painting. The company has two other teams, repaint and restoration as well as an industrial team, capable of generating sales for SPF. Both of these teams are a big part of the company’s success.

The repaint and restoration team at SPF has been very active in community events, and works with community association managers to maintain properties. “The key to success is still our management team, but also our long-term relationships and constant building of new ones with local managers and management companies,” says Johnson. 

SPF’s repaint and restoration team focuses on large HOA projects and high-rise communities. One of the team’s current projects is Tampico Marco Island, where SPF is working with an engineer to remove failed coatings, replace delaminated stucco as well as remove and replace all sealants and repaint the building. SPF’s repaint and restoration team also works throughout the state of Florida, mainly on the West Coast and central Florida.

Water and wastewater treatment plants as well as the petro-chemical projects are what make up SPF’s industrial work. On staff SPF has NACE (National Association of Corrosion Experts) certified inspectors, and the company is also a member of SSPC (The Society for Protective Coatings). In addition to these certifications and memberships, SPF’s project managers and superintendents work closely with coating manufacturers to ensure every project is satisfaction guaranteed.

“We keep our managers and field team well-educated with the most up-to-date processes and technologies to achieve the best results,” says Johnson. “Knowing the right product to use is crucial in this industry.” SPF has the experience, knowledge and staff to find the appropriate solution for any project.

Dedicated to Perfection

The team’s dedication to quality, safety and continually exceeding industry standards makes SPF a leader in its industry. The company has been rated the No. 1 painting and waterproofing business in Florida, probably because SPF employs a professional team of specialists with backgrounds in architecture, engineering, estimating, financing and materials in addition to project management. Johnson believes this team is what sets SPF apart from the competition. “What makes us different is our middle management, that being our superintendents and project managers,” he says.

On-site project managers are quite uncommon in the painting industry. SPF’s managers and superintendents keep projects on schedule and on budget while ensuring high quality and smooth operations. Despite the company’s size and regional footprint, SPF notably performs all aspects of its projects without subcontractors.

“One of our biggest challenges has been a hard hit to the construction market in Lee and Collier counties,” Johnson says of the recent recession. “We’ve had to pick up work further away from the office.” While transportation costs had risen, SPF found an expanded market for its operations throughout the mess. “We’ve adapted pretty well,” Johnson continues. “Now we cover the whole state.” The past few years have seen some fluctuation in profit margins for the company, but Johnson says, “Our revenue runs around $15 million.”

What a Reputation

High-quality standards of workmanship have earned SPF a reputation in the southeastern U.S. that keeps business going. SPF’s stability as a company and relatively large size allows the team to provide long-term warranties and years of service to its loyal clientele. The company offers services that range from painting and waterproofing to specialty projects that include flooring, fireproofing, specialty finishes, electrostatic painting and coating removal. From ballrooms and restaurants to movie theaters, SPF works with decorators and designers to achieve custom interior spaces specified to a client’s vision.

The first of November 2012 will mark SPF’s 30-year anniversary. Johnson is excited to announce, “We’re going to have a party for our employees and some of our key customers.” SPF isn’t only celebrating a notable history in the business, but also a promising future. “It’s going to take a few years to get back to normal,” Johnson says. “But the economic outlook is starting to improve in the construction industry.” SPF is looking forward to steady growth in the next few years. “Probably five to seven percent,” Johnson predicts. The company has plans to open another office, but Johnson hasn’t revealed a location just yet.

SPF’s projects have inspired loads of positive reviews. Johnson’s team has been described as “neat, competent and friendly.” The company completed a LEED-certified project on a public school, making it the first in the state to fit environmental standards. SPF doesn’t just do buildings, either.

The Rail Museum of South Florida’s president beams, “We knew that painting a 57-ton rusting locomotive sitting next to a large body of water in a highly visible park was not your average paint job.” However, the team at SPF carried out the project on schedule with attention to detail vital to the historic preservation of the engine.

The company’s testimonials speak for themselves. With three decades of experience, this company can look forward to many more years of hard work, attention to detail and excellence in service, and the Service Painting of Florida Inc. team is positioned for nothing short of success.

Published on: July 29, 2013

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