Business Profiles

by Speed Queen

last updated 16/09/2021


Pandemic-Proof Earner

by Speed Queen

last updated 16/09/2021


A Speed Queen laundromat provides a healthy, near-passive return on investment – even when other businesses are closed

Business ownership often means gruelling long hours, but Speed Queen does things differently. Speed Queen is a turn-key laundromat business that stands out for its ability to generate regular passive income for next-to-no-time spent on site.

And even during Level 4 lockdowns, self-service laundromats are deemed an essential business, meaning they can continue trading (and making money for their owners) when many other businesses can’t. With remote operation and PayWave-enabled machines making the business cashless, there are fewer contact points for customers, too.

‘It means the laundromat owners can remain safely at home in their bubble while the machines do the work,’ says Royce Little, Speed Queen’s head of laundromat sales. ‘With Covid variants likely to go on affecting how we live for some time to come, it’s yet another reason why we say Speed Queen offers a near-perfect business opportunity.

‘There can be low rent locations; zero staff; potentially cashless operation; and remote management. With Speed Queen there are no ongoing franchise fees to pay, either – it’s simply a case of investing in the equipment up-front and opening the laundromat under your own name.’

That’s not to say that there is no support. ‘We work closely with potential laundromat owners to assess the feasibility of each site,’ says Royce. ‘That’s not just the right demographic mix, but the parking, lease terms and traffic levels to ensure the best outcome for each new owner. We’re proud to say that no Speed Queen laundromat has ever failed in New Zealand, and we work hard to keep it that way.’

New technology makes it simple

With the US-built machines virtually indestructible, Speed Queen owners can expect an average of 15 to 20 years of reliable service, says Royce. ‘And if there is an issue, we have service engineers right around the country so they’re never out of action for long.

‘While the washers and dryers themselves are incredibly robust, it’s the way that we have matched them to new technology that has boosted the overall appeal of this business opportunity. You can manage the laundromat remotely simply using an app downloaded to your smartphone. The app allows you to access marketing and support functions, and get operational reports, as well as resolve any issues within the laundromat – such as responding to customer queries and managing individual machines. For example, if a token gets stuck or an ‘error’ light is displayed on a machine, you can instruct the customer to load their washing into another machine which you can then start remotely.

‘You can also monitor the laundromat on your smartphone through in-store security cameras to add further peace of mind. It means that you could theoretically live in the Bay of Islands and operate a business in Invercargill!’

A long pedigree

Speed Queen has been around since 1908 and it has been operating in New Zealand for 25 years. It is the world’s oldest and largest manufacturer of commercial laundry equipment, and leading-edge technology has long been a feature of the brand.

Most recently, cashless operation has been introduced. ‘Going cashless has not just enabled complete remote operation, but also eliminated any security and health issues associated with the handling of cash,’ explains Royce. ‘We’re confident that the business is pandemic-proof, future-proof and recession-proof. ‘People will always have to wash and dry their clothes – you can’t get away from that fact,’ he says.

Easy operation, excellent return

When it comes to opening your own laundromat with Speed Queen, Royce says, ‘We’ve done all we can to make this pretty much a turn-key business and we will hold your hand through the process.

‘We offer a solid financial package and won’t give the green light to anyone unless the fundamentals are right. We’ll also assist with all the required council regulations.’

Showing the appeal of the business model, Royce says that Speed Queen laundromats attract a broad range of investors. They include a retired CFO, some dairy owners who put up a deposit and opened one next to their shop, and a group of executives in their twenties who wanted a money-earning sideline without interrupting their careers.

‘The average investment ranges between $200-350,000, and the required deposit can be as low as $80,000. The return on total investment is in the region of 20-30 percent – that’s a lot more than you’ll get from the bank, and we’ve had some owners do much better than that!

‘Right now, we’re looking to hear from anyone who has the desire to build a successful business in any part of the country. With cheap rent, no staff, cashless operation, remote management, and a high level of business security for these uncertain times, I think you’ll find the Speed Queen opportunity ticks all the boxes.’   

See this advertorial on page 43 of Franchise New Zealand magazine Year 30 Issue 03

Contact details for Speed Queen

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