In this FDD Talk 2016 post, you’ll learn the following:
- Section I – Background information on the Martinizing Dry Cleaning franchise opportunity, including relevant news updates
- Section II – Estimated initial investment for a Martinizing Dry Cleaning franchise, based on Item 7 of the company’s 2016 FDD
- Section III – Presentation and analysis of Martinizing Dry Cleaning’s financial performance representations, based on Item 19 of the company’s 2016 FDD, including information on the:
- 2015 average, high, and low number of plant stores, number of pick-up stores, total gross revenue, and percent of gross revenue derived from Route Services for the 15 Martinizing Dry Cleaning franchisees that supplied information in a survey
- 2015 average store ticket for the 13 Martinizing Dry Cleaning franchisees that supplied information in a survey
- 2015 average Route Services ticket for the 10 Martinizing Dry Cleaning franchisees that supplied information in a survey
- 2015 average percentage of gross revenue available to franchisee for the 15 Martinizing Dry Cleaning franchisees that supplied information in a survey
- 2014 and 2015 total gross sales, customer sign-ups, first-time customers, and number of orders related to Locker Services for Huntington, due to its affiliation with Martinizing and its performance of Locker Services through its affiliate Bizzie
Section I – Background Information
It was chemist Henry Martin who came up with a new solvent for dry cleaning clothes, so he opened the first Martinizing Dry Cleaning location in 1949 under the banner of One Hour Martinizing – a real change from the tradition of taking several days to work on clothes. The whole idea of fast turnaround in dry cleaning was a real game-changer for the entire industry.
Up until Henry Martin’s innovation, people would drop their clothes off at a dry cleaning storefront and from there the clothes would be shipped out to a dry cleaning plant. This was necessary because dry cleaning technology at the time included flammable solvents, and prudence dictated that the dry cleaning facilities be located far away from storefronts.
Martin’s discovery was dry cleaning solvents that weren’t flammable, allowing the dry cleaning to take place on-premise, thereby greatly reducing the amount of time required.
The family-owned private company was based in Loveland, OH, and Martin started franchising the same year he founded the company, which was another innovation in an industry that was largely dominated by “mom-and- pop” stores.
Emphasizing the reduced timeframe of cleaning, one of the company’s early and popular marketing slogans was Fresh as a Flower in Just One Hour.
The number of locations has been declining since at least 2001, when it had 751 locations. That number currently stands at 397, of which 216 are located outside the U.S. Now based in Berkley, MI, here’s how Martinizing Dry Cleaning keeps customers’ clothes fresh and pressed:
A Greener Cleaner
Martinizing’s latest push includes trying to attract a more upscale clientele by promoting itself as the Greener Cleaner that uses the most eco-safe methods for dry cleaning.
A Struggling Company?
Besides the steady decline in the number of locations for more than fifteen years, another indication that the company may be struggling is in its newsroom. It’s always handy to take a look at a franchise website’s press page to see what’s happening. You can get an instant feel for whether a company is thriving and growing, or not.
In the case of this chain, there are all of two stories listed in the newsroom – one from July 2015 about a location opening in Fairfax, and the other from November 2014 announcing that The Huntington Company had acquired the chain. That’s not exactly what you would call a robust showing for a newsroom page.
The Huntington Company owns an array of related brands such as Huntington Cleaners & Shirt Laundry, Huntington Window Fashions, Wesch Cleaners, 1-800-DryClean, Pressed 4 Time, Dry Cleaning Station, and Certified Restoration DryCleaning Network.
Huntington is co-owned by Wayne Wudyka and Jeffrey Snyder, partners who got into the dry cleaning industry 22 years ago when they purchased Huntington Cleaners in Huntington Woods and then also launched Certified Restoration.
What Huntington is now in the process of doing is taking some of its lesser-known dry cleaning brands, such as 1-800-DryClean, Pressed4Time, and Dry Cleaning Station, and rebranding them as Martinizing Dry Cleaning. This makes sense given the fact that the Martinizing brand has a long and recognizable history.
The chain will see a boost in the number of locations by about 200 when the rebranding effort is complete.
Section II – Estimated Costs
- Please click here for detailed estimates of Martinizing Dry Cleaning franchise costs, based on Item 7 of the company’s 2016 FDD (updated).