Julie Levi

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Location: Englewood, NJ
Founded: 1987
Industry: Promotional products marketing

Julie Levi
Founder and President

Progressive Promotions

“When I first started PPI 30 years ago, there was no creative or innovative apparel at my college,” says Julie Levi, founder and president of Progressive Promotions (PPI). “I saw this as a great need and a significant business opportunity to be lucrative while also providing my classmates a fun and creative way to proudly represent their college.” From that founding vision, PPI has evolved into a company that provides merchandise to help clients improve revenue and grow.

Fun Fact:  With every order, PPI sends a performance survey for clients to complete. As an incentive for feedback, PPI makes a donation to a different nonprofit each month for every completed survey.

The biggest challenge facing PPI now is rapid growth. “With our London office now open, we have an even bigger team, operate in an even greater number of time zones and, not to mention, cultures. When I first started, I was a one-woman show,” she says. “I was very focused on day-to-day. But as the business grew and evolved, so did my role as a leader. … This change has taught me to be more efficient and effective, as I now have to do so much more in the same amount of time.”

The company’s PPI with a Purpose program focuses on giving back to the local community and supports several nonprofit organizations that hold events near the company’s office locations. Each year, the company sponsors all employees to participate in the George Washington Bridge Challenge, which benefits the American Cancer Society, as well as the Hemophilia Walks in New York and Chicago.