From its humble beginning as a specialty contractor focused on sandblasting in 1921, Graycor has grown and evolved to become one of the largest full-service industrial and commercial construction services firms in North America. During this time, Graycor has made a name for itself by tackling some of the toughest jobs in the industry and, in 2016, the company will reach an important milestone as it celebrates 95 years in business.
Just as the U.S. that we know today is much different from the U.S. in 1921, Graycor is a much different company than it was almost a century ago. From its Midwestern roots, Graycor has expanded its geographic reach and capabilities to include successful projects completed all across North America. Over the years, permanent support offices strategically placed in the Southwest, Southeast, Midwest and eastern U.S., along with mobile offices for temporary assignments, have allowed Graycor to build a reputation for being a dedicated and responsive partner, ready to go anywhere to serve its clients.
Along with geographic expansion, Graycor has experienced significant employee growth compared to the handful of people it started with. Today, Graycor is a thriving family of companies with more than 1,500 employees and craft personnel. This includes teams with specialized knowledge of industrial construction and maintenance work in the power, process and metals markets, along with a lengthy resume of commercial building experience in the retail, entertainment, distribution and manufacturing sectors, among others. Driven by both organic growth and strategic partnerships forged over many decades, Graycor’s ability to adapt to changing business conditions while leveraging new technology has been essential to finding success in such a wide range of markets.
Although Graycor has experienced many changes throughout its history, one thing that has remained constant for nearly 100 years is its commitment to safety, quality and innovation. In addition to lots of new clients, many of the original companies that Graycor worked for during its early days are still customers today. Coupled with a willingness to take on the “hard jobs,” Graycor’s renowned safety and quality programs were key to its many years of successful projects and maintenance work, and continue to be so today.
Matt Gray, co-chairman of Graycor along with his brother Steve Gray, represent the third generation of the Gray family to lead the company. “Being part of a 95-year-old company, it is really gratifying to see how our relationships with customers, other business partners, and even among our own people have evolved, deepened and grown over years and even decades,” says Matt. “There is just no substitute for the years of shared and specific learning and growth,” he adds.