Truck Wash Business Case Study


Smart entrepreneurs often look for businesses out of the way, things out of the ordinary but businesses, that have a good customer base and stable income. This is an extremely interesting story. He had always considered mobile truck wash efforts to be very profitable and he believed stationary truck washes to be a huge waste of money. That was until one year when a new franchisee joined our team from Oklahoma City. He runs a franchise company called Car Wash Guys; It turns out that the franchisee was previously employed by Blue Beacon Truck Washes, the largest truck wash chain in the US. They make around $138,000,000 per year with 80 truck washes and the company is very tight. Tim, our franchisee, was a truck manager for them, and before he bought our franchise, he started washing cars in OKC even though he’s the best at washing trucks. He had a two-year non-compete with his old company, which we have honored in OKC. He has tons of experience and indicated to me that the business is strong and we really should get into it. Later that year I sold a franchise to a person in WA state who owned car washes (5) and made a deal with a truck stop on an Indian reservation. He never started the plan, but the numbers we did on the spreadsheet looked great. and very profitable.

Even as a serial entrepreneur, I had never considered fixed site truck wash business as mobile truck wash business seemed much more efficient and less overhead; So even with all this knowledge in the team, we haven’t entered that market yet. One of our competitors in the car wash industry purchased two
truck wash chains for a total of fourteen truck washes and proclaimed it more profitable than their other car washes for 5 times more money. They now own nearly 100 truck and car wash locations across the country. After looking into it some more, a franchise buyer who owns Fuel MAN, an East Coast fuel card for fleet owners, approached us in South Carolina to use the Truck Wash Guys name and develop a trucks in the middle state. At that point we decided to start working on the details. Then a franchisee in OH made a deal with a truck stop between Columbus OH and Pittsburgh, to operate a 24 hour truck wash and defrost business. He thought how easy this is and now we have done a deal in WV at a truck wash as well. Our Ohio franchisee at the time hired another partner in WV.

Still reluctant to fully dive into the full-service truck wash subcategory, we found our Ohio franchisee going to great lengths to put together a deal with Pilot Truck Stops. Pilot Truck Stop has the most truck stops on the planet and sells 8% of all diesel fuel in the United States. So we planned a pilot-on-pilot program. Our temporary setup is a trailer unit, found at truck stops and washdowns make sense. We then work on plans for a building to send to the Construction department. for your approval, meanwhile the offers in
OH and WV and SC were suddenly in the works. We figured if our deal with the truck stops worked out well, the truck stops would get more traffic and fuel sales while generating
revenue and a percentage of the total truck stop revenue for the privilege of working there. We are so used to washing trucks and we have on our team a gentleman who sells Simonize truck washes and has been in the car wash and pressure washer equipment business for 20 years. By using the fuel man’s fuel cards as currency on the East Coast and Pilot’s name recognition, we thought we could enter this industry and take over.

There is a shortage of truck washes across the country and also a shortage of oil change facilities for trucks. A franchisee could be trained by our truck wash prototypes and probably be the best performing franchisee in our mobile truck wash.
division; then quickly establish themselves in their own markets. Pressure washing companies that specialize in fleet truck washing should, in fact, consider this type of strategy to enter the fixed site truck washing business.

If you study entrepreneurial companies, you will actually see that many companies fail in markets because of the opportunities that are presented, it is amazing the opportunities that exist and how quickly companies can grow when they can handle the demand of those markets. Think about this.

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