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News from the Industry

May 08, 2012
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Association News

• According to an article in the Chicago Sun-Times, the 2014 Car Wash Show™ will be held in Chicago and not Las Vegas.

The March 28 story said the switch is due to labor reforms which ultimately will lower costs for those exhibiting at the McCormick Place exhibition hall.

However, please note that an official statement has not been released by the International Carwash Association™ (ICA) or Eric Wulf.

In June 2011, PC&D reported that the ICA decided not to hold the 2013 Car Care World Expo™ in Chicago due to certain "work rules." Eric Wulf, CEO and executive director of the ICA, said challenges being presented by several unions contributed to their decision to not pursue a venue in Chicago. They had considered the McCormick Place in Chicago because it would allow for exhibitors to set up their own booths. A June 13 Las Vegas Review-Journal story stated that legislation enacted in 2010 by the state of Illinois would have allowed exhibitors to set up their own booths, but unions "tied up" the legislation and now there was a possibility that the legislation would not be enforced by 2013.

In the March 28 Chicago Sun-Times story, Wulf said Chicago is a world-class city and a world class convention venue. "Our exhibitors under the old format would not have been able to set up their own booths. That was the rule. The new environment allows exhibitors to use hand tools and set up their own booths," he said in the story. "We have somewhat specialized equipment that makes that an important part of our show. Given the changes, McCormick Place has become a very competitive place to locate [in]," Wulf said.

Wulf said he was shown an audit of exhibitor costs and said the "reductions across the board" gave them comfort that Chicago was a good choice for the show.

In a statement released by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, he stated, "I am pleased that The Car Wash Show is coming to Chicago and its more than 6,000 attendees will have a chance to experience all the great things our city has to offer…. Attracting shows like this is a central focus of our comprehensive business and tourism strategy. They create jobs for our residents and foster economic opportunity throughout the city. We will continue to seek more exciting shows that will bring thousands of visitors to Chicago."

Don Welsh, president and CEO of the Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau, told the Chicago Sun-Times that The Car Wash Show represents the ideal-sized group to complement Chicago's mid-sized and citywide business. "We look forward to welcoming all attendees to what is now the most customer-friendly convention and trade show destination in the country as a result of labor reform," he said in the story.

• In other ICA news, the Association announced it will be launching a new member program called Wash Count at this year's The Car Wash Show™, which is being held May 7-9 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center.

A press release said the program is "designed to help car wash operators assess the performance of their businesses and to provide meaningful industry data."

Wulf said in a statement, "People always ask how the industry is doing and Wash Count will finally allow us to answer that question. We invite all of our members to enroll in the free Wash Count program to benefit from this unique opportunity to improve their performance and help foster a greater understanding of our industry as whole."

To learn more or enroll, show attendees are being asked to visit the Association's pavilion at booth #180 when the showroom floor opens.

• The Western Carwash Association (WCA) met with members on March 7 in Hawthorne, CA, to discuss the recent news involving Unions and Los Angeles carwashes, as well as other legal issues, according to an emailed announcement.

The meeting took place at the Holiday Inn Express and cost $65 and was open to Association members only. Gary Bethel, an attorney with Littler Mendelson, served as presenter.

All of the topics covered included:

  • Union activities and issues - what are your rights
  • Immigration enforcement
  • New labor laws for 2012
  • New NLRB employee-rights notice posting
  • New law requiring written agreement for contractors receiving commissions
  • Wage and hour
  • Sexual harassment, discrimination, retaliation
  • Wrongful discharge
  • Confidentiality
  • Employment handbook updates

The $65 fee also included transportation to LAX, light refreshments and a Carwash-specific employee handbook, valued at $300.

People News

John Lai has been named the new president and chief operating officer of Mister Car Wash. Lai will be responsible for expanding the carwash chain's national presence.

CEO Ron Peterson said in a statement, "We are extremely pleased to welcome John into his new role … John has been instrumental in helping us develop and grow our field management team which we consider the backbone of our organization."

Lai has been with Mister Carwash since 2002 when he served as vice president of market development. He has served on both the International Carwash Association's® and Western Carwash Association's Board of Directors.

"We have a very unique team of extremely talented people at Mister Car Wash," Lai said in a statement. "Everyone in our organization is committed to continuous improvement. My job is to leverage all the great ideas that our team members come up with in order to create more value for our customers and shareholders."

Lustra™ Professional Car Care Products of De Pere, WI, has named Samir S. Beaini as its international sales manager. Beaini previously worked for the Northwest Pump and Equipment Company of Portland, OR, as a general manager of its carwash division.

Lustra's Vice President Dave Wingert stated in the press release, "Samir brings a wealth of experience to Lustra that will help us with our expanding worldwide distribution network."

Beaini has also served on the board of advisors for Cleaning Systems Inc., which is Lustra's parent company.

Company News

• Denver-based BayWatch Enterprises, a provider of doors and monitoring systems to the carwash industry, said a private investment group has purchased an interest in their company.

Tom Townsend, founder and chief executive officer of BayWatch said in a statement, "The funds will be used for the expansion of current operations, new product development, hiring new personnel and investing in new technology capabilities in order to help the organization capitalize on the demand created from upcoming product announcements."

Joe Giampietro, managing partner for the private equity group that made the investment, stated, "After a thorough evaluation of the marketplace and the competitive options available, we are confident that BayWatch offers the best products in the industry, not to mention the innovative new solutions that are being developed."

BayWatch offers carwashes lightweight vinyl doors, polycarbonate doors designed for cold-weather environments and advertising products that can be affixed to carwash doors.

GUNK®, of Indian Trail, NC, announced the reformulation of their Chlorinated Brake Parts Cleaner®.

The cleaner has been reformulated to remove brake fluid, dust build-up and oil from all brake parts. In addition, it leaves behind no residue, cleans better, dries faster and is still non-flammable.

"Our reformulated Chlorinated Brake Parts Cleaner is a performance based version of a tried and true product that GUNK® brand customers have relied on for decades," said Marshal Livingstone, GUNK® brand category manager, in a statement. "It's a great adaptation to our line of serious cleaners and degreasers, and I am confident GUNK® product users will see the difference in dry time and cleaning strength when they use the new formula."

Shurhold of Palm City, FL, introduced a one-handle system that can accommodate more than 40 different attachment heads. Attachments for the handles include brushes, mops, squeegees and other automotive accessories.

The "One-Handle-Does-It-All" system uses a spring-release mechanism that won't let the heads spin or pop off during use. Changing to a different accessory can be done with the push of a button.

The handle is made of corrosion-resistant aluminum with various fixed-length and telescoping handle sizes. A 30-inch extension is also available for the handles.

Quixx of Miami has introduced a new all-in-one kit for restoring yellowed or hazy headlights. The Quixx Headlight Restoration Kit includes lens polish, lens sealer, ultra-fine sandpaper and a sanding/polishing block and polishing cloths.

The lens sealer is a formula meant to generate a hard and long-lasting weather and detergent-proof protection layer over headlights. The UV-protection will reduce future fogging and yellowing as well.

"Most drivers don't realize that their headlights have deteriorated until we show them how much the light's range of visibility is improved after restoring them," said Mark Shore, vice president of sales & marketing, Quixx Care System, in a statement. "Foggy, yellow and scratched headlights reduce a driver's visibility by 50 percent, putting them at higher risk for accidents."

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