In this edition of Market Focus, we cover two new hires, an association initiative, planned carwash openings, a grand opening and a move.

Naren Persaud re-joins MacNeil team as customer service and inside sales manager

BARRIE, Ontario — MacNeil Wash Systems has named Naren Persaud as its new customer service and inside sales manager, according to a press release.

In this new role for the company, Persaud will be responsible for guiding customer service, inside sales and order processing, working closely with the 48 members of MacNeil’s international distributor network and four North American sales managers to process and track customer orders, the release continued.

“Naren comes to MacNeil with a tremendous amount of organizational experience and technical expertise to deliver best-in-class customer care,” said Jeff Tulk, plant operations manager for MacNeil Wash Systems. “This is a key role in the partnership we have with our distributors and owner-operators, and I’m looking forward to having Naren lead significant growth on our key objectives in this area.”

Persaud has worked with MacNeil in the past in a very similar role, the release noted, and has decided to return with the departure of the current incumbent, Tara Favretto.

“Tara has brought tremendous positive changes to the customer service and inside sales department and she will certainly be missed. However, having someone with Naren’s experience to step in and take over the position will certainly make for a very smooth transition over the next few weeks,” Tulk added.

PECO appoints new member to Parts Division

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — PECO Car Wash Systems announced the appointment of Mike Gristchuk to its Parts Division, according to a press release.

Gristchuk comes with a wealth of experience, having spent 13 years as fleet manager with a No. 1 auto dealer where he was instrumental in contracting negotiations, managing accounts and developing new streams of revenue, the release continued.

Gristchuk joins PECO Car Wash Systems in the Parts Division with long-time veteran Chris Sage, the release added.

Gristchuk’s engineering background and several years’ experience with a carwash parts manufacturer along with his extensive track record in customer support make him a perfect fit for “The Most Helpful Brand in Car Washing,” the release noted.

“I have admired PECO for many years. The equipment is designed to be both strong and incredibly durable while maintaining a matter of simplicity. PECO’s staff has been the friendliest I have dealt with, in years past. It’s no wonder PECO has grown so much over the recent years,” Gristchuk said. “Their dedication to customer support made it an easy choice to join team PECO.”

PSCWA promotes Car Wash Awareness Month

SEATTLE, Wash. — May is Car Wash Awareness Month, and for the Puget Sound Car Wash Association and its partners, this is an opportunity to raise awareness of how citizens in the region can help protect the Puget Sound, according to a press release.

The Car Wash Awareness Month campaign is presented by the Puget Sound Car Wash Association in partnership with the Department of Ecology, King, Pierce, Thurston and Snohomish Counties, cities around the Puget Sound, the Puget Sound Partnership, the Washington Environmental Council and the Puget Soundkeeper Alliance, the release noted.

With over three million cars in King, Pierce, Thurston and Snohomish Counties, it’s widely recognized that cars contribute significant pollution to the Puget Sound, the release continued.

Three million cars contribute an estimated 9,194 gallons of gasoline, diesel and motor oil; 19,355 pounds of phosphorous and nitrogen; 2,903 pounds of ammonia; and 1,451,613 pounds of solid waste into the area’s waterways annually, the release stated.

The Puget Sound Car Wash Association is a leader in the effort to protect streams, lakes and the Puget Sound from pollution caused by washing cars and trucks, the release continued, and it offers nonprofit organizations a carwash ticket program as an alternative to parking lot carwashes.

It has been awarded King County’s Earth Hero Award as an industry leader for innovative and effective environmental programs and has received the Community Service Leadership Award from the International Car Wash Association, the release concluded.

For more information, contact the Puget Sound Car Wash Association, 6351 Seaview Ave. NW, Seattle, WA 98107-2664, by phone (206) 622-8425 or by email at carwashassoc@qwestoffice.net.

To help spread the message to citizens, you can view and download PSCWA’s toolkit here.

Brothers to open three carwashes this year

FRANKFORT, Ky. — According to www.state-journal.com, two banker brothers, Geoff and Robbie Rather, are betting big on a few new Fast Freddy carwashes.

“Our father is named Freddy,” said Geoff Rather.

One location on the west side of Frankfort at the site of the former Kentucky Car Wash is due to open in June; a location in Shelbyville is expected to open a month later, and a third location on the east side on Versailles Road should open this fall, the article noted.

While theses carwashes are the Rathers’ first ones in the industry, the article continued, the general manager, Mike Andriotto, has been working in professional carwashing since the 1970s.

“It’s the most modern equipment we could get our hands on. It’s an exciting business,” Andriotto said. “I started working weekends when I was a kid dragging chains. They didn’t have conveyors back then.”

The Fast Freddy washes will all be express washes that can get a car washed in three minutes, the article stated; the sites will also include free vacuums, and only two attendants will be on-site to supervise.

Fast Freddy wash prices will start at $8 for a basic wash, $11 and $15 for mid-range washes and $18 for the most inclusive wash; in addition, there will be a subscription model for each type of wash, priced $19.95, $24,95, $29.95 and $34.95 respectively, the article added.

“We use it personally and we like it,” said Geoff Rather of the subscription model, noting that he goes to a local carwash every other day.

The Rathers are installing new equipment at both the west side and Shelbyville locations, which they had acquired, but they are building the east side location from the ground up, the article concluded.

Black Diamond Details holds grand opening

ASHLAND, Ohio — According to www.richlandsource.com, Brent Coffy, who ran the business Enhanced Home Painting, a pressure washing and painting business, for 14 years, decided to shift focus and opened Black Diamond Details, an auto detailing company, in March 2017.

“When we were doing pressure washing as a painting company, we couldn’t go after washing contracts for trucks saying, ‘We’re Enhanced Home Painting. We want to wash your truck for you.’ So it just made sense as far as name and market,” Coffy said. “It’s been a really fun adventure.”

The business held its grand opening and ribbon-cutting on April 21st, sponsored by the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce.

The building Coffy is currently leasing for the business, but plans to purchase next year, has space to pressure wash vehicles in back; afterwards, they move to a “paint booth” to be buffed, and then they are moved to the front of the building to be finished, the article concluded.

Finishing Touch Auto Detailing moves into new building

STAYTON, Ore. — According to www.statesmanjournal.com, Finishing Touch Auto Detailing moved two blocks down from its former, 800 sq. ft. facility into its new 5,000 sq. ft. facility, solving the business’ problems with space.

“Our new location can allow us to work on more vehicles, get them done more quickly, and have greater quality control,” owner Ryan Hendricks said. “We’re opening this larger shop at a great time for business, when our part-time Oregon resident customers return for the spring and summer months.”

In addition, Finishing Touch Auto Detailing is now offering new services, including paint protection film, spray-in bed liners and a selection of after-market accessories, the article concluded.