Industry Watch - July 2015 - Professional Carwashing & Detailing
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Industry Watch – July 2015

Company, association and people news collected from around the industry.


Company News

McNeil & Co. launches campaign to celebrate 25th anniversary

NEW YORK — Specialized insurance company McNeil & Co. has kicked off a national marketing and communications campaign to celebrate its 25th anniversary, according to a press release.

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The campaign includes a new logo, marketing tools, website, ads and videos, with the theme “We Are Who We Insure.” The campaign covers print, digital and social media platforms.

“We are excited to unveil our new look and launch the ‘We Are Who We Insure’ campaign, which reflects our unique approach to business and our dedication to our customers,” said Dan McNeil, founder of McNeil & Co.


As part of the campaign, McNeil & Co. will release a series of videos over the next year called “McNeil Minutes.” They will feature tips for managing risk, and Dan McNeil will discuss relevant business topics and his leadership vision.

Equipment distributor receives performance awards

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Howco Inc. earned three awards during the International Carwash Association‘s The Car Wash Show 2015 in Las Vegas, according to a press release.

The company received the Gold Level Sales & Excellence awards for sales volume and growth from Zep Vehicle Care. Howco represents the Armor All Professional, Rain-X and Blue Coral brands for Zep.


Coleman Hanna Car Wash Systems gave Howco the Diamond Award, recognizing the company as a “Million Dollar Producer” for Coleman Hanna. Howco also received a Bronze Award for superior domestic sales volume and support for the carwash systems business.

“We are thrilled to receive these prestigious awards,” said Howco CEO Chuck Howard. “They are wonderful testaments to the experienced and knowledgeable people who work for Howco and the premium equipment and chemicals we offer.”

Autobell earns water quality award

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Autobell Car Wash Inc. received the 2015 Sustain Charlotte Award in the Water Quality and Conservation category, according to a press release.


The honor represents Autobell’s 12th environmental award since 2000. All of the company’s locations treat 100 percent of wash water, and they recycle 80 to 100 percent. Some facilities reclaim 100 percent of the water.

Sustain Charlotte is a nonprofit that educates, engages and unites citizens to solve local sustainability challenges.

7-Eleven to acquire nearly 200 c-stores

BOSTON — 7-Eleven Inc. will purchase 182 Tedeschi Food Shops Inc. locations in New Hampshire and the greater Boston area, according to a press release.


“Tedeschi is a respected brand, and this acquisition fits in perfectly with 7-Eleven’s growth strategy,” said Stan Reynolds, executive vice president and chief financial officer of 7-Eleven.

“This move was made possible by 7-Eleven reinvesting the return from previous successful acquisitions to continue the company’s growth as the world’s largest convenience retailer,” added Reynolds. “These high-volume, high-performing locations complement our existing real estate portfolio in the [Boston] and New Hampshire [areas].”

CSI enters into distributor partnership with carwash

DE PERE, Wis. — Sitterly Road Wash LLC of Clifton, New York, has become a distributor for Cleaning Systems Inc. (CSI) through a new partnership, according to a press release.


Sitterly Road Wash is now an official distributor of Lustra products. It will work with carwash owners and operators in Eastern New York, Western Vermont and Western Massachusetts.

The carwash has been in business for more than 10 years. It specializes in in-bay automatic washes and has knowledge of all other formats.

“We are excited to be adding such an experienced and professional distributor to the Eastern New York and Western New England regions,” said Rob Peter, Lustra northeast regional sales manager. “The team of Sitterly Road Wash has such a vast wealth of knowledge that it will bring tremendous value to these markets.”


Kirkland Analytics announces new brand identity

SPOKANE, Wash. — Kirkland Analytics is now APANA, according to a press release.

“We’re truly excited about the brand and what it represents in technological advancement for businesses to save water, save money and optimize their water footprint,” said Tom Doll, executive vice president of sales and marketing for APANA.

The company has soft-launched a new website, The entire site was officially unveiled during the Clean Tech Showcase & Exhibition in Seattle on June 22.


Doll added that the company sees “abundant savings potential in an industry so highly dependent on water as a primary operating medium. Our carwash pilot results are proving successful and our 40 warehouse installations continue to deliver continued water savings.”

AutoWurld announces Prime Auto Care partnership

SAN DIEGO — AutoWurld members can receive discounted rates on Prime Auto Care services through a new partnership between the two companies, according to a press release.

Benefits include warranty and inspection services for franchise, independent and wholesale dealers.

“In addition to 90 days and 3,000 miles, our Dealer Protection Program offers powertrain coverage up to 150,000 miles with no year limits, and additional coverage for electrical and air conditioning,” said Kurtis Orcutt, vice president for Prime Auto Care. “Prime protects all key components of the vehicle including provisions for 24/7 roadside assistance to guarantee peace of mind.”


Other features of the program include rental car, trip interruption, one-ton vehicle coverage, emergency roadside service and towing and more.

AutoWurld allows dealers and wholesalers to cost-effectively manage inventory from anywhere through its website. It is a subscription-based service that eliminates listing, transaction and auction fees.

Armored AutoGroup agrees to sale

MIDDLETON, Wis. — Spectrum Brands will purchase Armored AutoGroup Inc. from Avista Capital Partners for $1.4 billion, according to a press release.

Armored AutoGroup includes automotive aftermarket brands Armor All, STP and A/C PRO. Armor All holds the No. 1 market share position in appearance products, while A/C PRO maintains the No. 1 U.S. position in the do-it-yourself air conditioner recharge category. Additionally, STP has the number three U.S. market share in performance chemicals.


For 2015 Armored AutoGroup is expected to generate net sales of more than $440 million. About 80 percent of the company’s annual sales are generated in the U.S.

The acquisition should increase Spectrum Brands’ top-line growth and margins. The deal will also positively affect the company’s cash flow.

Spectrum Brands and Armored AutoGroup’s boards of directors unanimously approved the transaction.

Whirlpool to acquire American Dryer Corporation

BENTON HARBOR, Mich. — Whirlpool has agreed to acquire American Dryer Corporation (ADC), according to a press release.


The transaction will allow Whirlpool to reach new markets and channels.

“Acquiring ADC strengthens our commitment to the commercial laundry industry and is aligned to our objectives of driving growth in adjacent businesses,” said Jeff M. Fettig, Whirlpool Corporation chairman and CEO.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Barrett-Jackson introduces auto care product line

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Barrett-Jackson has launched its own line of auto care products, according to a press release.

The line includes exterior and interior car, tire care and restoration products. Customers can purchase them in retail stores in North America including Wal-Mart, Pep Boys, Menards, Benny’s, and some Home Depot locations.


“We understand the importance of restoring and preserving the value of your vehicle,” noted Barrett-Jackson Chairman/CEO Craig Jackson. “Whether you’re giving your car a full detail or a quick touch-up, our new line of premium auto care products is car care you can trust.”

The products are designed to provide protection and long-lasting shine. They are formulated with Carnauba wax, and the Paste Wax, Spray Wax, Rapid Detailer and Liquid Wax Kit include hydrophobic polymers for all exterior surfaces.

For restoration, Barrett-Jackson’s products remove paint scratches, scuff marks and paint swirl marks. It can be used on all painted finishes and leaves no powdery residue. The new line also features a headlight restoration kit.


Association News

ACWA gears up for Australian trade show

MELBOURNE, Australia — The Australian Car Wash Association will present its Car Wash EXPO 2015 Aug. 25-27, according to a press release.

Carwash professionals can network with peers as they view the latest innovations in equipment, chemicals, recycling and wash services.

The event will be held at Etihad Stadium. Attendees can visit more than 60 booths over 9.5 hours. Special industry presentations plus a keynote and environmental speakers are also planned.


Visitors can go on a carwash site bus tour and take part in a workplace compliance seminar. Special travel accommodations have been negotiated.

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New York carwash meeting includes baseball and an education

REXFORD, N.Y. — The New York State Car Wash Association (NYSCWA) held its spring membership meeting on May 19, according to a press release.


Attendees visited NBT Bank Stadium in Syracuse, where Syracuse Chiefs General Manager Jason Smorol led them on a tour.

After a boxed lunch the group toured the McNeil & Co. insurance complex. Speakers Mark Nash, Dave Dennison and Mike Benmosche discussed insurance claims and how to prevent them.

Members then watched the Chiefs play at the stadium. Member Amanda Kubarek of K&S Car Wash threw out the first pitch, and Michael Grubka of Delta Sonic won a bobblehead contest.


People News

MacNeil appoints sales manager

BARRIE, Ontario — MacNeil Wash Systems has hired Anthony DiGioia as regional sales manager for the Southwest U.S., according to a press release.

DiGioia has 16 years of experience in the industry. He has worked with Arizona Car Wash systems and Cleaning Systems Inc.

“I am very happy to be joining MacNeil,” DiGioia shares. “I’m looking forward to helping our distributors and customers with their businesses, and turning their visions into profitable realities.”


CarWash Superstore hires general manager

BYHALIA, Miss. — CarWash Superstore has hired Jennifer Bender as general manager and director of sales, according to a press release.

Bender will oversee sales and operations including account services, sales training, purchasing and inventory control. She’ll also supervise the company’s new distributor program.

Bender has been part of the carwash industry for seven years. She previously served as sales manager for an industry equipment manufacturer.


CSI continues to grow team

DE PERE, Wis. — Cleaning Systems Inc. (CSI) has promoted Larry Taylor to assistant vice president – Texas, according to a press release.

Taylor has spent seven years with Lustra Car Care Products, a division of CSI. He has been involved in the carwash industry for more than 13 years. In his new role Taylor will oversee territories across Texas and work with CSI’s distributor partners in the area.


CSI has appointed Mercedes Mannino as director of marketing. She has 16 years of marketing and brand management experience. She previously spent nine years in the automotive industry.

Chris Ciechanowski has joined CSI as director of human resources. He has eight years of recruitment experience. He has been involved in staffing, team development and benefit management.

New CEO joins vacuum company

PELLA, Iowa — Ring-O-Matic Inc. has appointed Brian Metcalf as CEO, according to a press release.

Before joining Ring-O-Matic, Metcalf served as president of HammerHead Trenchless Equipment for eight years. He has also worked with Vermeer Corporation and Pella Corporation.


In his new role Metcalf will develop a sustainable strategic growth plan to position the company as the preferred supplier of vacuum excavators. He will also focus on achieving operational excellence and an expansion of the market with product offerings.

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