18/11/2019 - 16:15

Limnios name marks 50 years in Perth

18/11/2019 - 16:15

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Western Australia’s longest-running residential downturn is not a big concern for the founders of Limnios Property Group, because in 50 years of being involved in inner city property, the Limnios family feels like they have seen it all.

Limnios name marks 50 years in Perth
MILESTONE: James Limnios (centre), his parents Atha and Helen, and sister Stella are celebrating half a century in Perth property. Photo: Gabriel Oliveira.

Western Australia’s longest-running residential downturn is not a big concern for the founders of Limnios Property Group, because in 50 years of being involved in inner city property, the Limnios family feels like they have seen it all.

Five years after arriving in Australia in 1964, Atha Limnios seized an opportunity to enter the real estate market, inspired by an Italian migrant who had just sold him his first home.

At the time, Atha Limnios and his wife, Helen, had been operating two fish and chips shops, and while the businesses were successful, the husband and wife team sought to establish something more as a legacy for their young family.

Real estate provided that opportunity and, after initially operating a selling agency out of their Joondanna home, Mr and Mrs Limnios opened a William Street office in 1973, at the same time that Australia was falling into recession.

“Times were difficult and tough, but when you believe in what you want to do and you want to succeed, then it’s always a way to be more creative,” Atha Limnios told Business News.

“We had a simple recipe – believe in yourself and be honest and straightforward.”

Having been established as Limnios and Associates, the company soon evolved from being agency of choice for Perth’s European ethnic migrants to diversify into investment and development.

And while the 1970s recession was tough, the company’s biggest challenge came in the 1980s when it nearly went bankrupt after a development partner misappropriated funds earmarked for project development while the Limnioses were visiting family in Greece.

But again the Limnios family proved resilient, rebuilding the business on high interest loans and remaining committed to making a positive difference in Perth property.

In the late 1980s, the Limnios’ eldest son, James, got involved in the business and was followed several years later by his sister Irene.

“The company morphed from real estate services into urban renewal,” James Limnios said.

“We focused on off-the-plan sales, and did a lot of work with Adrian and Tony Fini, selling a lot of projects off the plan.”

But it was in 1999 when Limnios Property Group was appointed by the East Perth Redevelopment Authority as the exclusive agents to sell property above the Northbridge Tunnel that was the biggest catalyst for the company’s growth.

“From there, we entered a new phase of sophisticated investing and developing, and we started developing and constructing for our own purposes, but never in competition with our client base,” James Limnios said.

“We were building and developing small developments and it has now diversified into commercial office buildings, warehousing and hospitality with the Attika Hotel and Zappeion in West Perth.”

James Limnios, who is now leading the company under his father’s watchful eye, said the family was looking forward to the next phase of growth, if and when Perth’s property market turns to the positive.

“The group, as a family group, I think what’s made us survive is the fact that when you get to the bottom of it, there is a family bond,” James Limnios said.

“You can argue and have a disagreement, but at the end of the day, the priority is to stick together and keep the ship afloat.”

 

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