Business Profiles

by Speed Queen

last updated 07/12/2023


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Sit Back And Relax

by Speed Queen

last updated 07/12/2023


Speed Queen-equipped laundromats offer investors good returns with remote management

Since starting the Pakuranga Laundromat five years ago, life has only got better for owner Manoj Patel. ‘As a semi-retirement business, it could not be better,’ he says. ‘I have every confidence in the machines and the system. I know I can go on holiday for a couple of months to see family and not worry – my business will carry on earning steadily.’

Manoj was one of the first in New Zealand to convert a coin-operated laundromat to a fully-cashless one. His business was equipped by Speed Queen – the oldest and largest manufacturer of commercial laundry equipment in the world. As Royce Little, head of sales at Speed Queen, says, ‘The company was founded in 1908 and has  always been at the cutting edge of technology and trends.’

Manoj’s experience of Speed Queen was as smooth as it was successful. ‘I’ve had several businesses in the past, including one of the last Video Ezy stores in Auckland. I’d always had the feeling that there was a need for a laundromat in the Pakuranga area so I began to research sites and equipment. It quickly became clear Speed Queen offered the most robust machines, the best service, and were well ahead of the game in terms of offering Eftpos and credit card payment.

‘Working with them was drama-free. Speed Queen pride themselves on advising owners about site selection, and the equipment is as robust as they claim. I’ve not had to replace a single machine, and I’m convinced they will run for fifteen to twenty years as intended.’

The company is not a franchise, with laundromat owners operating under their own brand. However, as Royce emphasises, the company does assist you to get up and running. ‘We help with all the essential work from parking criteria to meeting council regulations and demographics. We haven’t built an outlet that has failed yet, and we don’t intend to!’

Cashless is king

Manoj initially set up most of his machines to be token-operated. ‘It was a good idea, because people didn’t have to worry about cash and could buy their tokens in advance. It also meant we weren’t keeping cash on the premises. However, in practice it didn’t quite work out. Some people lost or forgot their tokens, while although there was no cash in the machines, the bad guys didn’t know that and we suffered a couple of break-ins.’

Thanks to Speed Queen’s technology, there was a simple answer. ‘I converted all the machines to take Eftpos and credit cards only. This was more convenient for customers, who didn’t mind paying the small transaction fee, and better for me – I was able to get rid of the token machine and have had no further break-ins, so it was a win/win!’ 

It also made it easier for Manoj to take holidays with no hassle – something which Royce Little of Speed Queen says is key to the appeal of the business.

‘With cashless operation and remote cloud-based management tools, Speed Queen owners can be anywhere in the world and watch the money appear in their account as the machines do their job!’

Almost perfect

Investors all over the country are realising the potential of owning a Speed Queen-equipped business. ‘Self-serve laundromats have become increasingly popular,’ says Royce. ‘They are almost a perfect business opportunity: no staff, cashless, and capable of being run remotely.  Even in quite small towns, Speed Queen laundromats are proving  highly successful.

‘One of the key factors is plenty of available parking for customers – the only human requirement is a cleaner. Some owners like to do that themselves, as Manoj has done, but he can employ someone when  he wants to go away. For anyone seeking a passive income, they  are perfect.’

And Manoj agrees. ‘Being able to choose my own working hours, and not needing to be on site all the time is the biggest advantage for me. If you are thinking of setting up your own laundromat, I’d advise you to talk to Speed Queen, learn every aspect of the business thoroughly, then do what most Speed Queen operators do – relax and enjoy life.’

Impressive returns

Speed Queen has equipped hundreds of laundromats in New Zealand, and supplied six of the largest laundromats operating in the  southern hemisphere. 

‘We are now seeking further investors,’ says Royce. ‘A medium-sized investment is between $250,000 and $300,000, with a deposit required of $75-100,000. The return on the total investment is in the region of 20-30 percent, and we’ve had some owners do much better than that. 

‘To find out more, and discuss possible locations, give me a call.  It could help you create the future you want.’   

See this advertorial on page 81 of Franchise New Zealand magazine Year 32 Issue 4

Contact details for Speed Queen

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