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•The newest Sheetz location has a whopping 5,000-square-foot convenience store and a full-serve automatic carwash in Farmville, VA.
It is the company’s 54th store in Virginia. Sheetz currently operates over 330 stores and was recently named to Forbes’ list of largest privately held companies.
Employees hosted a community grand opening celebration on Jan. 4 with a ribbon cutting ceremony.
The store will have a state-of-the-art automation feature: customers will be able to place their food and coffee orders at touch-screen kiosks located inside and outside the store.
• Mark VII Equipment Inc., the US subsidiary of WashTec AG of Germany, a supplier of carwash equipment and supplies, has completed the first phase of its factory renovation project in Arvada, CO.
The renovation will update a factory built over two decades ago.
“Manufacturing technology has evolved over the years, and one of WashTec’s key initiatives for Mark VII is to utilize state-of-the-art manufacturing techniques to maximize efficiency and control costs,” said Murray Kennedy, newly named president and CEO of Mark VII.
The new factory will apply best practices learned during Wash Tec AG’s factory renovation in Germany.
The company has installed a rail system and a series of automated lifting devices to simplify the assembly process, resulting in reduced production time and enhanced quality control.
Final phases of the renovation project are expected to be completed by the end of this year.
• The Car Wash Operators of New Jersey (CWONJ) rolled out a successful casino night event this December in the Crown Plaza in Monroe, NJ.
Doug Karvelas, President of CWONJ, said the first event hit the jackpot and “the membership loved it” and “it was a huge success.”
The association’s new officers for 2007 were voted in, including President Doug Karvelas, Vice President Mike Prudente, Secretary Gerry Barton and Treasurer Dick Zodikoff.
CWONJ’s next event will be at Ray Catena Motors in Union, NJ on Feb. 6, featuring a tour of the company’s new state-of-the-art facility.
• Kevin Smith, owner of Lube Pro, in Pittsburgh, PA, is facing a $1 million lawsuit from Shell Oil because he refused to take down a Pennzoil sign that sat on his property for years.
Despite Smith’s removal and replacement of the sign, Shell Oil is still pursuing the lawsuit.
Shell Oil filed the lawsuit in federal court claiming the sign was trademark infringement, diluting business and false advertising.
Currently, the case is headed for trial.
• A councilwoman’s suggestion that carwashes be exempt from strict rules governing auto dealerships and similar businesses has sparked new debate over Nashville, TN zoning rules.
John Stern, chairman of the Nashville Neighborhood Alliance, said carwashes should not be exempted because they can bring noise or early and late working hours that affect neighborhoods.
Councilman John Summers said he would rather see debate on killing the rules altogether then taking them apart bit by bit. Similar rules were used to kill a proposed new carwash in his district earlier this year.
He has proposed a repeal bill to force debate on the entire auto business regulation, which uses zoning to dictate whether new auto businesses have to use chain-link fences or landscaping and masonry walls between the lot and the neighborhood.
• PDQ Manufacturing Inc., manufacturer of vehicle wash systems, has appointed Advantek Wash Systems Inc. as a non-exclusive distributor for the area of Ontario, Canada.
This marks a second distributor to the market in addition to Wash Tech headquartered in Guelph, ON.
Headquartered in Vineland, Ontario, Canada, Advantek Wash Systems has an additional warehouse and service facility in Burlington, Ontario.
• The Timothy McElroy scholarship fund, created in the name of the late president of Proto-Vest, Inc., has donated money to the Promise Village Home for Children, a charitable non-profit organization.
Proto-Vest, Inc., a manufacturer of carwash drying equipment, handles all administrative costs for the fund to ensure that 100 percent of the proceeds are dedicated to helping the youth of today.
The fund was created by the McElroy family as a way to honor Timothy McElroy after his passing.
The donation to Promise Village, a rehabilitation center for troubled foster home children, ensures the program can accommodate two more youths.
•PDQ Manufacturing, Inc. hired Kelly Luberda as its new Marketing Program Manager.
Luberda’s responsibilities include implementing the company’s world-wide advertising, public relations and brand communication strategies.
Luberda has over 17 years of marketing and public relations experience. Prior to coming to PDQ Manufacturing, Inc., Luberda was the Marketing Communications Manager at Cellcom, a regional wireless telecommunications company.
She holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in Communications from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.
• Karl Schmidt has been appointed CITGO Petroleum Corporation’s general manager of its lubricants division, which produces a full line of engine oils, greases, process oils, fluids and other lubricants.
Schmidt’s responsibilities will include the division’s business operations, from base oil manufacturing to finished lubricant marketing.
Schmidt holds a BA in chemical engineering from the University of Texas and a MA in finance from the University of Huston where he received the Dean’s award for Academic Excellence.
• Carwash owner Stacey Patulski has been appointed to serve on the Midwest Carwash Association’s (MCA) Board of Directors.
Patulski, owner of Manistee Auto Spa in Manistee, MI, said he looks forward to “maintaining a strong and effective organization.”
• Michael Palandro has been named Dosatron’s Chief Executive Officer.
Palandro assumed responsibility for position of CEO in October 2006.
Palandro brings successful leadership experience in both domestic and overseas operating environments to the company.
Dosatron is a manufacturer of chemical dispensers and pumps.
• Dan Bowe, a 10-year veteran of the laundry industry, will lead the IPSO sales team for Alliance Laundry.
IPSO is a commercial laundry manufacturer, purchased by U.S.-based Alliance Laundry Systems in July. The company manufactures coin-operated and on-premises laundry equipment, such as those used by self-serve carwash owners and operators.