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KB History

The family business spans three generations of builders, Peter Karamfiles senior, his three sons George, Paul and Jim, and his grandson Sam.

The business originated with the patriarch of the Karamfiles family, Peter. In 1936 Peter immigrated to the Boyup Brook and Bridgetown area to escape the depression and hardship of Macedonia with a vision to re-settle his family. He began by cutting sleepers and doing odd building jobs before joining William Moyes & Sons Builders of Bridgetown to earn money to bring his family to Australia. He brought the skills of carpentry and stone masonry, two trades he learned in his home country, and worked tirelessly to achieve his goal of reuniting his family in Australia. In early 1948 he began working to build his own business to provide for his family and looked forward to his sons joining him in the construction industry.

When two of Peters’ sons and his wife arrived on the 4th of January 1949, 13 years after his arrival in Australia, his second eldest son Paul joined him to start work building farmhouses and tobacco kilns in and around Manjimup. For many years they strapped their tools to their backs in hessian bags and rode to their worksites, often double dinking, usually traveling to Palgarup and Middlesex.

After a couple of years Peter’s two other sons, George and Jim, joined them and together they continued the family business of construction. In 1959 Peter Karamfiles passed away and his sons continued the family tradition then trading as Karamfiles Brothers until 19 years later when George & Jim decided to relocate to Perth. Paul Karamfiles continued on as a sole trader employing many young locals under his tutelage as apprentice carpenters.

At one time he employed over a dozen carpenters and cabinet makers directly, not to mention additional sub-contactors, to complete his many building projects.

At this time Paul owned a large workshop situated on the South West Highway in Manjimup and the business produced many building products in-house. It is now almost unheard of for small builders to produce their own wall frames, doorframes, doors, or windows but this proved very successful for Paul as he strove to build his business.

On 12th December 1969, Paul Karamfiles achieved his Builders Registration and today he is one of the longest serving active builders registered with the Builders Registration Board of Western Australia. His son Sam joined his father after completing his studies in 1982. Paul and Sam worked together trading as Paul Karamfiles & Son for a dozen years and further established themselves as builders of high repute.

In addition to the participation of the Karamfiles men, Pauls' wife Sofia worked in the business fulfilling the painstaking job of cleaning the completed houses. Coupled with raising their two children, often providing meals for their workers as well as her husband, Sofia worked tirelessly to help achieve their business goals. This commitment to the family business by all members has ensured its success and longevity.

In early 1994 Paul handed over the operation of the business to Sam and entered semi-retirement, however he still works today supporting Sam when additional supervision is required. He maintains his own current Builders Registration, completes his own building projects and it is inspiring to see, at the age of 76, he often may be found hanging doors or cutting out a roof.

Since that time Sam has earned his own Builders Registration and changed the structure and the name of the business to Karamfiles Builders whilst continuing the family tradition. Sam wanted to maintain the initials of K.B. as the brothers had traded in the past, when the business was entitled Karamfiles Brothers. By updating the name to Karamfiles Builders he has maintained the focus on K.B., kept the name simple and ensured that it discribes exactly who and what the business is. He is focused on moving forward with advanced technology, a customer service focus and the utilisation of modern construction processes.

Modern technological advances have aided the business with particular reference to computer aided drafting incorporating three dimensional imaging, computer based estimating and quoting programs, accurate measuring and leveling devices and more generally advances in quality, accuracy and speed of building tools.

Sam Karamfiles is proudly keeping the traditions and reputation established by his forefathers alive in the South West of Western Australia.

Paul, Christina & Jim Karamfiles.

Paul & Sam Karamfiles

Paul Karamfiles at 76 years is still active as a redgistered builder

Sam Karamfiles