Biz Idea #16 – Updating Laundromats

by Byron on January 24, 2012

The Problem:

This was shocking to me, but many laundromats still use coin based machines.  This means you need change machines and change collection, among other inefficiencies.  In addition, you can’t take gift cards or EBT.  And you need repairmen who born in the Depression.

The Business

Update laundromats to have optimized technology and equipment.  Get a partner for the financing and provide specific illustrations about the cost savings.  Sell this to one or two location guys.

But then flip it on its head.  First, calculate the average of what the shop made for the last year.  Your start-up, makinglauromatsbetter.com, collects all of the money the shop makes (remember, the money now comes in electronically)  and pays that amount to the laundromat owner.  Makinglaundromatsbetter.com gets paid for selling the equipment, get a cut on the financing from the financing company, and takes a small fee for money managment and monthly guarantee.  Then the laundromat owner gets paid half of all of the revenue over and above his old monthly average.  As soon as the equipment is paid off, the money starts coming in straight to the laundromat owner’s bank account.

Doableness

The right relationships, the right money formula, and the right sales team is all this is.  The relationships are with financing, equipment, installation, and banking.  A rough draft of the money formula is above.  The right sales team is always part of the challenge.  On the whole, this is challenging, but doable.  It is probably best left to someone with industry experience.

My Thoughts

Modernizing facilities and equipment often pays for itself.  I’m thinking green buildings and waste management here.  You need to find salespeople good enough to get over the customer lethargy and a sales hook compelling enough.  I think the monthly guarantee of the laundromat owner’s monthly revenue is compelling enough in this case.

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