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Convenience Store Owner Named Huebsch® Store Owner of the Quarter

February 17th, 2015


 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Convenience Store Owner Named Huebsch® Store Owner of the Quarter

Adjoining laundromat proves smart investment

 

RIPON, Wis. – (Feb. 17, 2015) – Huebsch®, the expert in commercial laundry efficiency, has named Raj Patel the latest recipient of its Store Owner of the Quarter award for his Speed Coin Laundry, Convenience Store_Speed Coin Laundry-coinwash.coma laundromat adjacent to his convenience store and gas station located in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

 

“Mr. Patel’s success over the past 20 years is inspiring. From having essentially nothing when his family immigrated to the United States to now owning multiple successful businesses, he emulates the American Dream,” said Kathryn Rowen, North American sales manager for Huebsch. “We are so glad he found success in the laundry industry, and that Huebsch could support him in achieving his business goals.”

 

Patel was 14 years old when his family moved to California from India in 1995 with just $500. They soon moved from California to Chattanooga, Tennessee, and saved their earnings in order to purchase a convenience store and gas station. After seven years building a successful business in Chattanooga, the family’s next move was northwest to Murfreesboro where they purchased Marathon Discount Tobacco, an eight pump gas station and convenience store with an adjoining store front. They filled this space with a liquor store, which they also owned and operated.

 

Unfortunately, even with a commerce boom in the area, the liquor store wasn’t bringing in the revenue Patel had hoped.Raj Patel-coinwash.com In 2013, he sought out a more sustainable and profitable, yet somewhat hands-off, investment. This search led him to the vended laundry industry and his region’s authorized Huebsch distributor, Nashville-based National Laundry Equipment.

 

“After comparing various manufacturers I came to the conclusion that Huebsch machines are a better value than any others available,” said Patel. “And, by choosing Huebsch, I was confident I would receive customized and knowledgeable support from its network of professionals.”

 

Patel quickly received a tailored business loan from Huebsch Financial, and also Raj Patel & National Laundry Equipment-coinwash.com-001relied on his distributor’s support and expertise throughout renovations and installation of 36 machines. Among many aesthetics updates, a doorway now connects the convenience store and laundromat from the inside. Speed Coin Laundry opened in July 2014 and, as Patel intended, it has already been beneficial in driving customers to his convenience store, while also proving profitable independently. When cars pull up to pump gas, they learn about the laundromat for potential use in the future. Alternatively, laundromat customers are likely to venture into the convenience store and purchase snacks to enjoy while they wait – something that wasn’t as common when the liquor store filled the space.

 

With the initial success of Speed Coin Laundry, the always ambitious Patel is already dreaming of owning multiple laundromats someday. With reliable partners to assist him with every aspect of the process, he is confident he’ll achieve this goal.

 

“I already have the ideas and support system – it’s only a matter of time,” Patel adds.

 

 

Introduced in 2014, Store Owner of the Quarter recognizes Huebsch store owners who have excelled in entrepreneurism, technology adoption, innovation and superior customer and community service. Read Patel’s story, and others, at Huebsch.com/News/Store-Profiles.

 

Media contact: Marit Harm, 414.292.0217 or mharm@n-s.com

 

About Huebsch:

Since 1907, Huebsch has manufactured durable commercial laundry equipment engineered for efficiency, reliability and optimal performance. Commercial laundry is our only focus and we back our equipment with an industry-leading warranty. Throughout our decades in the commercial laundry business we have continually innovated. We now produce some of the most efficient and cost-effective washers and tumble dryers in the world. Our equipment is supported by a network of knowledgeable distributors and service professionals. Our customers further benefit from an extensive set of financing options provided by Huebsch Financial. Huebsch is part of the Alliance Laundry Systems LLC family of brands. Alliance is the leading global manufacturer of commercial laundry equipment and provider of services to laundromats, multi-housing laundries and on-premises laundries. To learn more about Huebsch, visit Huebsch.com.

 

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Electrolux gives American twist to traditional French laundromat

February 10th, 2015

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Laundrylux_trade_mark

For Immediate Release
Laundrylux Contact:  Dawn Nagle
VP Creative Services, Marketing Director
(800)645-2205 / dnagle@laundrylux.com

Electrolux gives American twist to traditional French laundromat

 
 

In the foothills of the Pyrenees Mountains resides the little French town of Perpignan. As a traveler to this quaint Ville, Electrolux-equipped Mr. Bubble’s Laverie in Perpignan, France.founded around the 10th Century, it might surprise you to find, nestled amongst meandering lanes and stately old-world mansions, a store that’s thoroughly modern with a decidedly American twist. It’s a laundromat called Mr. Bubble’s Laverie.Mr. Bubble’s Laverie is the brainchild of husband and wife team, Kurt and Kiki Drimmel. Kurt, a United States citizen, and Kiki, who originally hails from France, had previously called San Diego, California their home.

Coinwash.com_MrBubblesFrance_GrandOpening Yet as they began discussing their semi-retirement options, and how best to enjoy a slower pace of life, Kiki and Kurt kept circling back to the same conclusion – returning to France to open a laundromat that offered American amenities.“We’ve been returning to France every year, since 2004,” Kurt shared. “It’s hard not to fall in love with the people, food, and the beautiful places this country offers. It was our dream come true to make this move happen as soon as we did. And, we never looked back.”
 
 
Newly transplanted yet not new to the laundry business
 
 
The couple arrived in Perpignan, located in the South of France, in April 2014, and after five months their search for the ideal laundromat location was underway. While Kurt might have been newly transplanted, he wasn’t new to the laundry business. Back in the States, Kurt worked for one of the premier Electrolux professional brand distributors in Southern California – Mike Hurrell at Golden State Laundry Systems.

“Mike has an obvious passion for the business, said Kurt. “He taught me a lot about the coin laundry and on-premise market, and about the Electrolux brand of professional laundry equipment.”

Kurt spent several years with Mike at Golden State and then went on to work as an independent consultant for his own company, San Diego

Coin Laundry & Equipment Sales, under the Golden State Laundry Systems umbrella. “I’ve been in this business for over a decade and must have visited every store in San Diego County many time over,” mused Kurt. “It was the best way to know my local market and learn the intricacies of the industry.”
 
 
Putting his extensive knowledge to work for Mr. Bubbles Laverie
 
 
Kiki and Kurt Drimmel, owners of Electrolux-equipped Mr. Bubble’s Laverie, at their recent Grand Opening celebration.

Coinwash.com_MrBubblesFrance_kikiworking

Having assisted several of his Californian clients with the process of opening a new store, retooling an existing store, or just purchasing equipment, Kurt was confident he’d be able to secure the right location for his store in his new hometown. With a little help from a great broker, he and Kiki did just that. “The area is called Las Cobas, a neighborhood of Perpignan, and it’s steeped in history and culture,” shared Kurt. “The store is in a small strip center surrounded by apartments as well as small shops and restaurants that offer prime storefronts and steady traffic flow.”

What’s more, the closest laundromat to their location is about two miles away and is in need of a retool and some tender loving care. From day one, the couple knew that this Las Cobas locale had all the makings of a premier laundry spot.

Keeping this in mind, Kurt wanted to act quickly and begin formal lease negotiations, even though he wasn’t fluent in French. “I’m currently in school twice a week to fine tune my language skills,” said Kurt. “I may not be fluent—yet. But I do fairly well.”

However, Kiki is fluent and was very much on board. She was also a fast study, learning all she could about the business from Kurt as well as from her own due diligence. Ready to step in, Kiki lead the negotiation with great success. “She was amazing to watch!” exclaimed Kurt. “So poised, so knowledgeable… I am truly grateful to have Kiki as my business partner.”

Yet in light of their industry acumen, the pair still recognized the importance of having a reputable local distributor by their side. “As a longtime laundry professional, I know what a tremendous job it is to launch a laundromat,” he shared, “so many details to consider, from construction, to purchasing equipment, to creating a marketing plan. I knew we needed guidance; a trusted advisor who lived here and knew the ropes.”

Not knowing exactly who that would be, Kurt called someone a world away – John Sabino, the president of New York-based Laundrylux, the sales and marketing arm for Electrolux Professional Laundry systems in North America.

“I can’t think of anyone more well-informed than John,” stated Kurt. “And we can’t thank him enough for putting us in touch with Isabelle Lefevre, the regional Electrolux representative. We found Isabelle to be knowledgeable and professional. She really listened to what my wife and I wanted to accomplish with our store.”

 

The obvious equipment choice for Mr. Bubbles – Electrolux  

 

Naturally when it came time to purchase equipment for their Laverie, Kurt and Kiki chose Electrolux. “Having sold Electrolux and competitive products for years, I already knew—from its energy efficiency to its durability, Electrolux was the highest quality equipment out there,” shared Kurt.

Another significant detail about Electrolux equipment is its ability to handle larger-size loadsCoinwash.com_MrBubblesFrance_washersdryers quickly. “The key for us is to cater to the people who wash their bulky bedding and comforters,” assessed Kurt. “Very few people have the capacity in their home units to wash large items, and only 15 to 20 percent actually have dryers in their apartments.”

French consumers are also keenly aware of the Electrolux brand. “When we’ve mentioned in passing that we’re installing Electrolux equipment, the response was overwhelmingly positive,” said Kurt. “People instantly recognize the brand and that it’s synonymous with quality.”

Electrolux is a global leader in developing sustainable “green” commercial laundry equipment. The washers and dryers are designed to increase productivity while lowering water and energy consumption.

For instance, Electrolux washers come standard with features such as Automatic Water Savings, which determines the weight of the load and adds precisely the right amount of water. The results can be seen in lower utility costs and a superior wash experience.

“The washer’s High Spin 450 G-force extraction is another fantastic and unique Electrolux innovation,” said Kurt.

Electrolux washers, as well as its dryers, come with the Compass Pro microprocessor for easy programming and more than 20 languages. Compass Pro also makes the equipment extremely user friendly. “My wife and I are available to help our customers, but the machines are very easy to operate,” said Kurt, “very intuitive.” Custom programs such as “comforters” or “uniforms” can easily be added to meet your customers’ needs – and there’s a real-time clock for promotional and time of day pricing.

Electrolux dryers are also built with time and energy savings in mind. “EcoPower technology automatically lowers the heat when the laundry is dry,” explained Kurt. “I think that’s remarkable. It keeps turning so the laundry does not wrinkle, saves clothing and linens from over-drying, and saves us money on our utility bill.”

“Time does seem to move more slowly in France,” Kurt continued, “however, I know our customers appreciate the faster dry time. And we can’t say enough about the significant cost savings. ”

 

Small by American standards, yet above average in France

 

With Mr. Bubble’s equipment choice firmly in place, Kurt and Kiki hired Mr. Bouzakri, an expert in building Electrolux-equipped laundries throughout Europe. “Mr. Bouzakri and his company Blue Concept have been instrumental in optimizing the layout for the store,” shared Kurt. “He and his employees drove an hour and a half each way to build our store.

Coinwash.com_MrBubblesFrance Their attention to detail and dedication to our project has been stellar.”

Kiki and Kurt Drimmel, owners of Mr. Bubble’s Laverie, had walls knocked down to give it a more open feel and installed new lighting to brighten up the new space.

With the square footage coming in at right around 800, Mr. Bubble’s Laverie is small by American laundromat standards, yet above average in size for France. “The biggest changes we’ve made were removing several walls to give the space an open feel and paying attention to the lighting creating a bright, welcoming environment,” said Kurt.

Mr. Bubble’s now boasts a simple layout that is highly functional – washers in one row, dryers in the back section of the store, and a payment system that’s centrally located. A tidy gathering of table and chairs create a comfortable and inviting space for patrons to relax as they wait for their laundry. Other amenities include soap and candy vending machines, free Wifi, and a full video security system.

Mr. Bubble’s Laverie is attended at all times by either Kurt or Kiki or both. “It’s always nice to see the friendly face of an owner on site,” said Kurt. “We want our customers to feel welcome and offer any suggestions they might have for additional services.”

 

Not your typical French laundromat

 

With its larger-sized Electrolux equipment, being fully attended, and offering special services like Fluff & Fold, Mr. Bubble’s is making its mark as “the laundry with the American twist.”

“Our customers are excited by our American wash-dry-fold services,” said Kurt. “It’s a concept they know nothing about here and it’s really taking off.”

As for marketing, in addition to a more traditional advertising campaign such as distributing flyers with a coupon for a free dry and giving away Mr. Bubble’s tee-shirts and pens, Kurt and Kiki is putting some new ideas to work. “We are partnering with the local bakeries to do coupons for a wash and baguette special,” shared Kurt. “Plus a local news station is interested in sharing our unique ‘Americans open a new laundromat in France” story.

Kurt and Kiki’s mission is to be the laundry that other laundromats aspire to be. “Our keys for success are simple,” stated Kurt. “Keep our laundry clean, be open on days that the others are closed, offer innovative services, and provide exceptional customer service.”

 

Looking forward to the New Year ahead and some words of advice

 

Kurt and Kiki have accomplished quite a lot in the eight short months they have lived in France. Their best advice to anyone opening a laundromat here or in the United States is: Do your homework about the industry and your location; and while you might get some equipment cheaper up front, don’t discount the fact that you get what you pay for.

“We were presented with several brand choices,” said Kurt. “Yet we knew with the Electrolux products, the equipment would suit our customers’ needs and give us the benefits of long-term utility savings and durability. Plus time is very important to customers and to us. When doing wash-dry-fold with Electrolux machines, we can get the laundry washed AND dried in 45 minutes… ready to serve the next customer!”

The couple is very excited to provide Mr. Bubble’s customers with a much needed state-of-the-art laundromat with many conveniences. “We want our customers to come and enjoy their time at Mr. Bubble’s doing something they really don’t like doing,” said Kurt. “Our store is quite special. It’s unlike anything else in town.”

Kurt and Kiki believe in their store so much that already they are thinking of opening additional Mr. Bubble’s locations. “Our last piece of advice is never be afraid of taking risks,” Kurt summed up. “You just never know what you can accomplish.”

Click here (http://laundrylux.com/vended-laundry/electrolux-vended-laundry/) to learn more about Electrolux Professional laundry equipment.

Dawn Nagle
Vice President, Creative Services

LAUNDRYLUX

  1. dnagle@laundrylux.com
  2. 516-371-4400 x123
  3. 516-371-4204

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Distributors of Electrolux Professional & Wascomat Commercial laundry equipment

New Vended Front Load Washer Provides Ultimate Efficiency

January 26th, 2015


 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

New Vended Front Load Washer Provides Ultimate Efficiency
Balance sensing system, larger capacity yield maximum performance

 
RIPON, Wis. – (January 26, 2015) – Huebsch®, the expert in commercial laundry efficiency, offers vended laundries another new product to achieve maximum performance with its all-new front load washer. Equipped with cutting-edge innovations including a redesigned balance sensing system and 20 percent larger capacity, the machine allows store owners to lower utility costs and boost revenue.

“Huebsch has always provided store owners with durable, commercial-quality products and powerful features competitors cannot match. The new front load washer is no exception,” says Kathryn Rowen, North American sales manager for Huebsch. “Updated with new technologies, this machine helps Huebsch All-New Front Load Washervended laundry owners provide their customers with an experience that is second to none, all while increasing store profitability.”

For store owners considering replacement, Rowen says the machine’s energy-saving innovations make upgrading older, inefficient top load washers to front load washers an especially smart business decision. These features include:

  • Redesigned balance sensing system. With an updated suspension and new sensing technologies, the machine is now better equipped to redistribute loads and maintain cycle times. The more efficient system results in reduced utility costs, shorter wait times and increased turns through the store.
  • Larger capacity. The machine’s durable, stainless steel washtub is 20 percent larger to allow for bigger loads, allowing store owners to demand a higher vend price. Improved water and energy efficiencies also help store owners realize maximum efficiency by keeping utility bills at all-time lows.
  • Increased spin speed. A higher extraction speed of 440 G-Force maximizes moisture removal from the load and thus lowers drying times to get satisfied customers in and out quickly.
  • Tilted control panel. A 10-degree tilted control panel provides a more effortless user experience.

As with all Huebsch products, the front load washer was developed using a five-step engineering process that ensures ultimate efficiency and reliability load after load. Built with premium, commercial-grade materials and tested to meet the demands of the harshest vended environments, the front load washer is engineered for maximum performance. Additionally, the entire machine comes with Huebsch’s standard three-year warranty.

 

“We’re pleased to deliver yet another efficient, commercial product that gives store owners the ability to enhance their business and increase customer satisfaction,” adds Rowen.

 

For more information visit Huebsch.com or call 1-800-553-5120.

 

Media contact: Marit Harm, 414.292.0217 or mharm@n-s.com.

 

About Huebsch:

Since 1907, Huebsch has manufactured durable commercial laundry equipment engineered for efficiency, reliability and optimal performance. Commercial laundry is our only focus and we back our equipment with an industry-leading warranty. Throughout our decades in the commercial laundry business we have continually innovated. We now produce some of the most efficient and cost-effective washers and tumble dryers in the world. Our equipment is supported by a network of knowledgeable distributors and service professionals. Our customers further benefit from an extensive set of financing options provided by Huebsch Financial. Huebsch is part of the Alliance Laundry Systems LLC family of brands. Alliance is the leading global manufacturer of commercial laundry equipment and provider of services to laundromats, multi-housing laundries and on-premises laundries. To learn more about Huebsch visit Huebsch.com.

 

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