Global mission Featured

8:00pm EDT June 25, 2009
Distribution & Systems Management

When Nicola Antakli called for a family meeting regarding the future of the family business, his daughter, Nicole, envisioned a future as president of the family business.

But instead of starting at the top of Intraco Corp., she worked her way up from the bottom, learning the ropes from Nicola, the company’s chairman and CEO.

Nicola Antakli founded Intraco in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1971. He wanted to expand the Middle East markets for high-quality, technologically advanced North American products, first focusing on automotive replacement parts. Soon, he added the company’s current core business — architectural glass distribution.

Now, Intraco is headquartered in Troy, where it can build relationships with domestic suppliers. And while the Antaklis’ focus on products manufactured in North America, they acknowledge the importance of the global marketplace. The company maintains just one customer in North America, servicing clients in more than 60 countries, including Syria, where Intraco is General Motors’ sole distributor for Chevrolet, GMC, Hummer and Cadillac.

Under Nicola’s entrepreneurial spirit and Nicole’s dynamic leadership, Intraco’s sales grew 15 percent in 2007 over 2006 and almost twice as much in 2008 over 2007. They also added 25 employees each year from 2006 to 2008.

Going forward, as president and chief operating officer, Nicole plans to add offices in South America and China.

Nicola’s mission of “building bridges between people and nations by promoting peace through trade and commerce” isn’t just a global goal but a local one, as well. The duo devotes 4 percent of Intraco’s net income to philanthropic causes both abroad and in Detroit.

How to reach: Intraco Corp., (248) 585-6900 or