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Associated Press

posted by admin @ 2:05 PM
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Associated Press
By JOYCE M. ROSENBERG , 08.23.2006, 04:28 PM

For Greg Mangiaracina, the move from New Orleans to San Antonio is permanent. After seeing how the storm had unsettled his family, the safety of his wife and children became paramount. 

Mangiaracina, owner of A-Pro Home Inspection Services, knew he had to act quickly to save the business. The problem he faced was the destruction of the city’s infrastructure – his business includes running training programs for franchisees from around the country and without a functioning airport and tourism industry, he couldn’t get people to come to New Orleans.

Mangiaracina said he knew he could survive – “I could go back to New Orleans and be in an engineering firm” – but he felt a responsibility to the 120 franchisees in his system, so he knew he needed to move.

He had a Sept. 30 deadline for getting a new training facility set up somewhere else, as he had a class scheduled then. So he chose San Antonio: “I was looking for a place relatively free of natural disasters, a large city that had easy access to around the country. I needed a place that had good tourism.”

The training facility was intact, although Mangiaracina’s original leak detection business, the one that spawned the franchise system, was destroyed. With help, he loaded trucks with 7,000 square feet of furniture including stadium-style seating, and transported the facility’s contents to Texas, set it up and made his deadline.

The move has been fortuitous; Mangiaracina said his sales have doubled. But, he said, he’s not going back to New Orleans.

“I can’t put my family through this again,” he said.

Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed


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