Orlando, FL – Sandra Saft, President of S. Saft and Company dba Window Interiors was recently selected as the 2015 North Florida District Small Business Person of the Year. Window Interiors not only provides shades and window coverings for projects across the country, but also manufactures solar shades out of its Altamonte Springs, Florida headquarters. Saft founded the company in 1989 with $10,000 in savings, and has steadily grown the company to a multi-million dollar business.
In the mid 1980’s Saft worked for a retail blinds fabricator in a sales capacity. While driving around Orlando, Florida, she noticed many new commercial buildings being built, and thought that this would be a good market to sell blinds to. When she approached her manager with the idea, he was not interested in pursuing it. Saft believed in the opportunity so strongly that she decided to ultimately quit her job, take a course on blueprints and construction to learn about the industry, and start Window Interiors.
Saft started visiting construction sites to pitch her ideas for energy efficient window treatments, and after 25 years in business, she continues to sell her ideas. Her clients include companies such as Darden Restaurants, Walt Disney World, the Universities of Florida and Central Florida, Nemours Children’s Hospital, and the newly built Dr. Phillips Center for Performing Arts in Orlando.
In 2009 the company was earning revenues of $5.3 million, but the recession that year impacted the construction industry greatly. As a result, Window Interiors lost $2 million in revenue in 2010. Saft decided that in spite of the downturn in the economy, she did not want to reduce her long-time staff. The company made improvements in customer service, operational systems, marketing, safety, and client relationships to grow the company. Window Interiors successfully maneuvered through the economic downturn without downsizing any staff, and recovered with $5.4 million in sales at the end of 2013.
After the recession, Saft worked with the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at the University of Central Florida to create a long-term plan to prepare for future challenges. The SBDC is a resource partner for the Small Business Administration, and provides counseling, training, and technical assistance to small businesses. For more information, visit the SBDC website.
In addition to leading her company, Saft has served on several boards and currently is a committee member of organizations such as the Associated Builders & Contractors, the American Institute of Architects, and Commercial Real Estate Women. She also volunteers her time to mentoring groups such as A Gift for Teaching and Junior Achievement of Central Florida. She also helps fundraise for the Florida Hospital Foundation for the Children’s Foundation.
Sandra Saft, President of S. Saft and Company dba Window Interiors can be reached at 947 Joisane Court, Suite 1010, Altamonte Springs, Florida 32701 or (407) 247-7122. The company’s website is www.windowinteriors.com.