Industry Newsline - November 2002

Industry Newsline

PDQ Manufacturing Inc. of De Pere, WI has announced that Mike Savignac has accepted the responsibilities of vice president of sales and marketing in addition to his current responsibilities. Savignac has been employed with PDQ since April 2001, serving as executive vice president of operations. He has a BS degree in Electrical Engineering and an MBA. His 17-plus years of experience include management of the full spectrum of manufacturing, sales, marketing, engineering, customer service, materials, and quality arenas. Savignac will continue to direct PDQ's manufacturing operations, as well as lead sales efforts and marketing initiatives for the company.

NBA player Charles Oakley has expanded his car wash business. The newest facility is located at 2101 Gravesend Neck Road Brooklyn, NY. Oakley's car wash offers a wide range of services, the most unique of which is the availability of the car wash for charity fundraisers.

The New York State Car Wash Association's (NYSCWA) Fall General Membership Meeting, car wash tour, and boat cruise took place September 12. Nearly 60 people came out for a full day of car wash touring and recreation aboard the Spirit of Rochester.

The keynote speaker was Bill Sartor, president of the International Carwash Association. Sartor spoke on the current ICA initiatives and the importance of participating in state or regional association activities. Walt Hartl, president of NYSCWA, offered an update on the association's activities. Matters covered included the group's sales tax efforts. Although repeal in 2003 was unlikely, Hartl emphasized the importance of the association continuing to keep its name in front of key legislators. He also asked for increased

Carwash PAC support so lobbyists Judy Klein and Connie Crane, as well as association members, could attend some key legislative functions over the next year.

Mike Benmosche of Brown & Brown Insurance updated the group on the insurance program and the state of the insurance market right now.

San Diego Magnetics, a supplier of currency authentication detectors and brand protection solutions, has announced an agreement with Iowa Changers to offer a completely new digital currency acceptor/validator. The all-new digital design replaces 50-year-old technology and creates a far more reliable and secure product than those currently on the market.

The new Iowa Changers unit utilizes San Diego Magnetics advanced thin film technology to validate the bill. The new bill validator is more reliable and robust and offers much more security than other models. It is less prone to "stringing" of bills. The system is capable of verifying all denominations of currency.
At the heart of the validator is the SDM low-profile digital sensor. Superior signal-to-noise ratio and immunity to stray magnetic fields contributes to greater accuracy of the system. The sensor is speed-independent and immune to temperature fluctuations, allowing for greater flexibility in system design.

Integrated Cleaning Systems International Inc. (ICSI), which specialises in Kärcher vehicle washes, has recorded unusually good growth in the first eight months of this year. Kevin J. Collette, the company president, reported that last year's sales numbers had already been surpassed at the end of August this year. This means that Kärcher sales volume had more than quadrupled since 1999.

Kärcher gantry washes travel over the vehicle using a refined contour-following system to guarantee uniformly good washing results over the vehicle's entire surface. Patented Kärcher power nozzles achieve an impact pressure that is up to 40 percent higher than conventional nozzles. Kärcher car washes are available as pure high-pressure touchless gantries or as combination gantries with soft-foam "Carlite" washing brushes.

ICSI is headquartered in West Palm Beach, FL and sells, installs, and services Kärcher vehicle washes nationwide through a network of factory trained distributors. The company is a long-standing and committed partner of Alfred Kärcher GmbH Co., a German company founded in 1935, with a workforce of 5,500 and an annual sales volume of more than one billion Euro. Both companies co-operate closely in developing Kärcher vehicle washes for the American market and see themselves as emerging-market leaders in innovative vehicle washing technology. Further expansion of the vehicle wash business in the United States is planned for the coming years.

Nasdaq advised Mace Security International Inc. ("Mace"), on October 2, 2002 that its stock price was below $1.00 for 30 consecutive days. If the bid price of the Mace's stock is not $1.00 or more for 10 consecutive days (or longer, at the discretion of Nasdaq) on or before December 31, 2002, Nasdaq has advised the Mace that it may be delisted. The company may appeal any decision to delist its stock or it may apply to transfer its securities to the Nasdaq SmallCap Market.

On October 15, 2002, Mace announced that it had purchased a block of 429,000 shares of the company's common stock in the open market at a price of $0.51 per share. These shares represent 1.7% of the company's total shares outstanding. Mace plans to immediately retire these shares, which will eliminate them from the open market float and increase the company's book value per share from $2.56 per share to $2.59 per share (based on data as of June 30, 2002).

While Louis D. Paolino, Jr., chairman and CEO of Mace, declared that at the current level of the stock price, management considered Mace to be significantly undervalued, the block purchase seemed to do little to bolster investor confidence. "Our decision to purchase these shares results from the belief that the market has undervalued our business. Further purchases will be considered in the future," Paolino added.

Automechanika 2002 took place from September 17 through 22 in Frankfurt, Germany. Organizers were able to report a 10 percent increase in exhibitor numbers and, at 159,531, a record number of trade visitors from over 130 countries.

A majority of exhibitors (64 percent) said they were very pleased with the high level of trade-visitor decision-making authority. Around two-thirds of visitors hold an executive position in their company. Forty percent of trade visitors came from outside Germany. After Germany, the top ten visitor countries were France, Great Britain, Italy, the USA, Poland, The Netherlands, Belgium, Israel, Spain and Greece.

A total of 4,291 exhibitors from 70 countries took up 300,000 square meters of indoor exhibition space at Automechanika 2002. In an effort to make it easy for US car care companies to test the waters in Europe via Automechanika, the International Carwash Association put together a "North American Carwash Pavilion," and was successful in attracting nine exhibitors including Auto Laundry News.

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