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Meet Gary Thiakos of Zepole Supply Co. in Bolingbrook

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gary Thiakos.

Gary, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
My father, Nick Thiakos founded Zepole Supply Co. in 1982. He had 25 years’ experience in the foodservice industry when he started the company and as a Greek immigrant, hard work and determination were two things he knew well. Zepole started in the basement of an office building in Joliet, selling disposable paper products to restaurants. He started building the company from there – moving into selling chemicals, janitorial supplies, tabletop products and equipment. Meanwhile, I was growing up in this family business, starting with stocking toothpicks at age 2! When my Dad passed away in 2006, I was only 27 years old and suddenly at the helm of a very large ship. So, I did what I was taught; I put my head down and got to work, always keeping in mind all of the great things my Dad did for me, for our family, for our company and all of the people who we employed. Today, we employ 35 people and are a major player in the Chicagoland foodservice community. We are known for providing exceptional service, integrity, education and value to our customers. We are a one stop shop from design to installation to resupply for all your restaurant and cooking needs, and our cash and carry store has grown tremendously. We are expanding like crazy and are excited for the world to see what’s next for Zepole.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
There are always obstacles, rough patches, up and downs, but if you love what you do, you’ll always be determined to overcome all of those struggles. The biggest challenge was the fear and skepticism of what was going to happen with the company after my Dad passed away. That just gave me more fuel to carry on my Dad’s legacy and make the business successful…and here we are 11 years later!

Please tell us about Zepole Supply Co.
If you are an owner ready to make your mark by opening a new restaurant, bar or bakery; in a pinch for supplies; or just needing a hands-on experience in a showroom to test products, we have everything you need. Whether it is pristine custom kitchen design with equipment delivery and installation; or every day needs like dinnerware, kitchen and small wares, disposables, janitorial supplies, and chemicals, Zepole is your one stop partner for all of your foodservice needs! Our passion drives us to go above and beyond for our customers, and our consultative approach is innate. Our motto is, we never stop growing, and neither should you.

We aren’t looking for a sale, we are looking for people to partner with for both of us to grow. We take the time to get it right the first time, then continue to promote your business in as many ways as we can going forward, including our website, social media and referral! We are game changers!

We are most proud of the successful and loyal partnerships we have built throughout the years and how those customers have help build our reputation in our industry.

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