This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS - See his portfolio and get alerts BEFORE every trade. Learn more NOW!

3 Businesses That Rebuilt After 9/11

Greg Carafello
Greg Carafello, now a master franchisee of Cartridge World's New York City and New Jersey stores, just barely made it out of the south tower before it too was hit by a plane.

Carafello's printing business, Abracadabra Digital Color, made its headquarters on the 18th floor. The company also had four satellite locations in New Jersey, but many of its clients were in the towers.

Carafello escaped with one other employee. No others were in the office yet, he says thankfully.

"At first we thought it was a gas explosion, but then we heard it was a plane. My back was to the building when the second one was hit. The noise level was unbearable. At that point you start sprinting. You know you're under attack. This is not a mistake. So we ran down to South Street Seaport," he recalls.

He and the employee ended up walking to midtown to the Waldorf-Astoria, where they got a room to rest and take showers. "We didn't even know the towers had fallen until we turned on the TV," he says.

Carafello was so shocked by the experience -- including the loss of his best friend in the attacks -- that he didn't think much about his office for several days. "It was a matter of just getting away," he says. "You think as an owner you think of the business the next day. It was a week of doing absolutely nothing on the couch. I had competent people running the offices in New Jersey."

But eventually Carafello did have to think about his business -- or rather the lack of business.

"We did a lot of trade show graphics. There was nobody traveling. We went right into a recession. People had no funds," he says.

The Port Authority, one of Carafello's biggest clients, kept giving him business, and Carafello was able to keep his staff of 30 employed for the next two years. But by 2003, the business started to ramp down, and he ended up selling in 2004.

In the meantime, Carafello was already plotting his next venture -- which didn't include New York City, to begin with. "I wasn't ready to go back yet," he says.

He became a franchisee of Cartridge World stores, buying the master rights for its New Jersey territory. Between 2003 and 2005 he opened some 30 stores in New Jersey for the 1,700-store, international specialty retailer of printer and toner cartridges.

But Manhattan eventually lured him back. In 2007, he bought the rights to an additional 30 stores in New York City. He's been slowly opening stores there. Between all of his territories, 46 stores are open under Carafello's franchise territory, and New York City still has virgin opportunities for Cartridge World, he says. He wants to put five stores in lower Manhattan alone.

But the tenth anniversary of 9/11 drums up painful emotions.

"It's been a painful 10 years. Thankfully I got out alive, but financially I got hit. But you get back up and go back to work and be the best at what you do," he says. "The new business is doing well. It's starting to really take off. Now we've got a mature system that's really starting to grow."

3 of 4

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Try it NOW
Only $9.95
Try it NOW
14-Days Free
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
M $63.58 0.00%
AAPL $130.09 -0.25%
FB $80.72 0.39%
GOOG $554.99 -0.09%
TSLA $207.19 0.00%

Markets

DOW 18,214.42 -10.15 -0.06%
S&P 500 2,110.74 -3.12 -0.15%
NASDAQ 4,987.89 +20.7530 0.42%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs