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Monday, May 20, 2024

Paving A New Path

Santa Ana Outdoor Home Services Firm Systems Pavers on an Expansion Push

System Pavers, a Santa Ana-based direct-to-consumer firm that specializes in outdoor residential upgrades—“from driveway pavers to walkways, patios to pergolas, barbecue islands to pool decks,” it says—is going through a remodeling of its own.

Chief Executive Syed Zaidi, who joined the company in 2021, is leaning on his prior career as a software and technology executive to revamp the company’s online presence, with System Paver’s first e-commerce site launching late last year.

It’s the latest sign of expansion for System Pavers, which surpassed the $100 million mark in sales a couple years ago. The company recently got new backing from an investment company, and refers to itself as one of the home improvement industry’s fastest-growing companies.

System Pavers officials say they want to provide their own high-quality outdoor accessories for backyard renovation projects including turf installation, fire pits, kitchen islands and patios, hence the e-commerce site.

The website, dubbed the Outdoor Store, sells products such as waterproof speakers and patio furniture, with products like a five-piece dining set running as much as $2,939. It launched after outdoor games and portable devices saw a boost in popularity following the pandemic, according to Zaidi.

“I wanted to focus on how tech would change businesses in an unusual way,” said Zaidi, who previously ran Frontpoint, a security-first smart-home company based out of the Washington, D.C. area.

Growth Potential

System Pavers was founded in 1992 by Larry Green and Doug Lueck, and at one point handled commercial projects such as paving for Los Angeles’ Union Station and the Angel Stadium in Anaheim.

The firm today focuses on home improvement projects, serving nearly 100,000 homeowners since its inception.

Repeat customers make up nearly 40% of its portfolio, according to Zaidi. Orange County was its very first market and is one of the largest the firm serves, officials say.

A typical customer can spend upward of $100,000, according to the company.

“The investment people make in their home is typically their largest investment,” he said.

The company counts 17 locations in six states. Zaidi anticipates opening an additional 20 to 30 branches and service centers over the next few years, with a goal of becoming a national brand, not just regional to the West Coast.

Investor Boost

A recent helping hand has been London-based Cranemere Group, which became a long-term investor in the company in September as part of a company recapitalization.

Cranemere, with offices in London, New York, and Washington, D.C., is a long-term holding company for founders, management teams and family-owned companies in the United States and Europe.

Its website lists seven primary companies in its portfolio; other home improvement investments include the Engineered Stone Group, which it calls the largest producer specializing in engineered stone bathroom products in Europe and the United States.

Among other recent deals, Cranemere in 2021 invested in Outpatient Imaging Affiliates, in a transaction that trade reports pegged around $400 million.

A valuation for System Pavers wasn’t disclosed at the time of last year’s recapitalization transaction with Cranemere.

“Founders and management retained a significant ownership interest in the business as part of the partnership,” Cranemere said on its website. They “were looking for a long-term partner to help expand the business in existing and new markets and capture its full potential.”

The partnership has already helped System Pavers in its goal to ramp up its physical footprint, Zaidi said.

Earlier this month, the company opened its first office in Tempe, Ariz. About 100 people are expected to be hired in the area over the next few years to support its operations in the state.

An OC Starter

System Pavers counts more than 100 full-time employees in Orange County across five branch offices. The firm’s Santa Ana center and headquarters is its largest facility.

System Pavers reported gross sales of $89 million in 2020 with 3,404 jobs completed; in 2021, it beat revenue expectations of $115 million, according to Zaidi.

He declined to share the latest revenue figures, but noted sales have continued to beat projections as well as outpace overall industry growth.

“Orange County continues to be a great location for us,” Zaidi said. “It was the best decision to start here, and we continue to receive great support from the community.”

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