American Business

American Business Magazine

Thesis Painting is like many other small businesses—it was built on the skills of family members. Angelo Spyridakis came to America as a Greek immigrant who worked as a painter with his father and brother. But Angelo didn’t have the goal of making it in America simply as a craftsman with a job—he had the burning desire to live the American dream by building a successful company.

Barbara Spyridakis, who is now a partner with her husband Angelo, didn’t immediately work full-time for Thesis Painting. In the company’s early years, she worked for a law firm during the day while helping with the books and marketing at night.

That changed in 1998 when Barbara was on maternity leave. During that time, she was able to generate enough new business to cover what she was making at the law firm, which allowed her to join Thesis Painting full time. Below, she recounts her and Angelo’s journey to success during the Great Recession.

Barbara Spryidakis: “Our company, Thesis Painting, is primarily a painting and wall covering business in the Washington, D.C., metro area, and recently has expanded into floor covering, as well. We concentrate on the commercial and government sectors—a highly competitive market. We have approximately 48 employees on a seasonal basis and generate over $5 million in annual revenue. We get our name from ancient Greece where Thesis was the deity of creation. In more modern times, Thesis means a position of prominence or high standing in the community.

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