Manufacturers' Showcase - September 2002

Manufacturers' Showcase: Lube Programs

Express Care Program
Lexington, Kentucky

Valvoline created the new Express Care program to distinguish an independent operator's facility and offer a premium branded look that differentiates the business from automotive competitors and other retail businesses. Also, the program offers an Installed Business Team focused on increasing the success of each Express Care operator's business.

Advantages/Features The Express Care program from Valvoline is designed to attract and retain customers with a bold, contemporary image, in-store business assistance, and Valvoline's brand recognition. Whether building a new location or converting an existing facility, Express Care positions the operator as a convenience-focused, diversified service provider, offering the highest quality products and services and ultimately receiving the trust of the consumer. Express Care operators benefit as this level of trust is further enhanced by Valvoline's offering of high performance products under five well known brands: Valvoline motor oils, Eagle One appearance products, SynPower motor oil and performance products, Pyroil automotive chemicals, and Zerex antifreeze coolant. The Express Care program has the advantage to operators of combining a car wash and quick lube which offers a professional retail image for both profit-centers under one highly marketable name.

Customer/Operator Support The Express Care Installed Business Team provides assistance based on the individual needs of an operator. Operators are provided one assessment day and five days of on-site consultation to support their operational, marketing, and management success. Areas of assistance include: labor planning and control, customer service training, promotional planning, advertising, product/service presentation, store merchandising, profit and loss (P&L) planning, information management (computerization), mortgage based financing, market research, and building plans. In addition, Valvoline provides ongoing promotional opportunities and marketing materials designed to increase car count, customer loyalty, and sales.

Contact Valvoline Express Care. Toll free: (800) 622-6846.

Tulsa, Oklahoma

The CITGO Lube program has grown to include more than 400 independently owned and operated facilities today. Additionally, CITGO features SUPERGUARD(r) motor oils and other quality CITGO automotive lubricants in over 700 fast lubes, car dealerships and installed outlets supported through its nationwide system of branded, contract lubricant marketers. CITGO promotes the placement of its Lube facilities on existing C-store and car wash properties to maximize cross-marketing potential and revenue-sharing benefits. Its program offers the independent owner a franchise-like operation without the associated franchise costs.

Advantages/Features CITGO offers a site selection and development system, flexible branding and signage options, marketing/advertising/promotional tools, proprietary credit card program, used oil recycling program, SUPERGARD Lifetime Engine Warranty program, and a supply relationship through CITGO's branded, contract lubricant marketer network. It also offers a complete private label filter program. Through CITGO's recommended facility structure policy, preliminary and complete construction plans for new, ground-up locations are proposed. Additionally, it promotes the modular building concept through its association with Boegh Building Systems. A qualified CITGO Lube facility must have pits, drive-through bays, and bulk storage and dispensing capabilities.

Operator Support CITGO offers full support from site selection to construction to business-building tools during actual facility operation. An important cornerstone of this support is the CITGO Fast Lube Management training school, offered regionally throughout the year. CITGO also maintains relationships with key vendors that provide preferred pricing and structured programs for equipment, financing, computer systems, and general equipment leasing.

Contact CITGO Petroleum Corporation (David Kunkel, CITGO Fast Lube Contact), P.O. Box 3758, Tulsa, OK 74102. (918) 495-4106. Toll free: (800) 331-5483. E-mail:

Kwik Kar
Dallas, Texas

The very first Kwik Kar was built by Kwik Industries in Denton, Texas in 1985. Today there are 340 shops, making Kwik Kar one of the fastest growing systems of quick-lube shops in the Southwest. Kwik Kar's concept is that of a quick-lube shop with exceedingly high standards, quality products and selection as well as professional service.

Advantages/Features Each Kwik Kar is independently owned and operated, offering economies of scale associated with a franchise operation, but without the pitfalls inherent with a franchise unit. Kwik Kar provides a dependable source for automotive supplies, a 45,000-square-foot warehouse and a top distributor of many fine products, such as Pennzoil, Gumout, Fram, and many more.

Recommended Facility Structures Standard four bay, double stack (four lube bays and four service bays) with options to increase.Operator Support o Advertising and marketing support, signage and promotional items, demographic analysis, market feasibility studies, turn-key construction, building plans, engineering, equipment, special negotiations on national accounts and equipment, financing programs and training programs are available.

Contact Operators interested in obtaining more information should contact Ray Ellis, president of Kwik Industries, 4725 Nall Rd., Dallas, TX 75244. (972) 458-9761. Web site:

Oil Can Henry's
Portland, Oregon

Oil Can Henry's is a leader in the quick lube industry, with a powerful brand, proven operations and training programs and extensive marketing support. As a member of Castrol Select Service, a nationwide network of quality quick lubes, Oil Can Henry's has access to Castrol's premium lubricants and proven track record of exceptional sales.

Advantages/Features Oil Can Henry's develops innovative solutions to provide franchisees with additional tools and opportunities for success. The new modular one bay center is just one example of this innovative spirit. The one bay center provides a quick, low-cost entry into Oil Can Henry's proven system. It fits on a plot of land the size of six parking spaces, making it an ideal addition to an existing car wash location. (Take a virtual tour of the center at

Customer/Operator Support Oil Can Henry's provides extensive, on-going operations and marketing support. The unique Oil Can Henry's operations system sets it apart from the competition and provides franchisees with the tools needed to build strong customer relationships and average customer tickets that are consistently at the top of the quick lube industry. In short, Oil Can Henry's provides excellent franchise opportunities for hard-working, committed individuals.

Contact Oil Can Henry's, 1200 N.W. Naito Parkway, Suite 690, Portland, OR 97209-2800. Toll free: (800) 765-6244. Web site:

76 Lubricants Company's Express Lube Program
Houston, Texas

The 76 Express Lube program offers operators several branding options, from a fully-branded lube center to a supply only with point-of-purchase and advertising.

Advantages/Features 76 Express Lube is available through more than 300 marketers across the United States offering a wide range of services using a full line of quality oils and programs that can be tailored to meet the needs of each individual operator. In addition to these services, 76 Express Lube owners can depend on the 76 name, and can benefit from the company's research and development. 76 offers programs including credit cards, equipment, air and oil filters, advertising and marketing and other business start-up needs.

Customer/Operator Support The 76 Express Lube program includes: on-site business improvement programs for new and existing operators; regional training for operators, managers and technicians; site selection; architectural concepts; and building plans. Also, 76 offers a broad range of products and support capabilities to help new as well as experienced lube shop operators.

Contact Operators seeking more information can call toll-free to speak John Brant your 76 Express Lube representative at (800) 766-1020, ext. 8.

Shell Rapid Lube?
Houston, Texas?

Shell Rapid Lube offers qualified car wash operators a competitive fast lube program supported by one of the most recognized brands in the world - Shell.

Advantages/Features Shell Rapid Lube retailers operate independently while enjoying identification with Shell. Operating expenses are minimized with no franchise fees, no royalty fees, and no advertising fees. In addition, retailers can take advantage of market-competitive cost-of-goods for FormulaShell(r) motor oil, ShellGuard(tm) filters & wiper blades. New Shell Rapid Lube locations receive a free exterior signage package. To sum it up - the Shell Rapid Lube program offers simplified programs, lower product cost and brand recognition. Often, a two- or three-bay facility will fit on an existing property.

Operator Support The Shell Rapid Lube program includes free building plans, demographic analysis, Standards of Appearance and Operations Guide, Ad Layouts, and Uniform Program. Also Shell Rapid Lube locations can accept Shell and Texaco proprietary credit cards. Retailers can choose from receiving Business Development Funds or getting a net-net price on FormulaShell(r) motor oil.

Contact Shell Rapid Lube. Toll free: (800) 782-7852 (option 6). Operators seeking more information can e-mail at

Valvoline We Feature Installer Program
Lexington, Kentucky

Valvoline has been dedicated to the development of quality, innovative, high-performance products and services for over 130 years.

Advantage/Features Installers participating in the We Feature program maintain their entrepreneurial independence while aligning with Valvoline's strong brand-image. They benefit from the added value of Valvoline's history, variety of products, advertising efforts, and high customer loyalty.

Operator Support The installer has access to multiple promotions tailored to meet the needs of the quick lube operator. The promotions highlight products from the Valvoline Family of Brands and offer value-added premiums and/or customer giveaways. They are all designed to help drive traffic, build business, and increase overall car count. In addition to promotions, the Valvoline We Feature program has a merchandising package that is second to none. Installers can increase visibility with point-of-sale material including posters, product display racks, curb signs, and custom banners.

Contact Toll free: (800) 622-6846. Web site:

Valvoline Instant Oil Change
Lexington, Kentucky

Since 1988, the Valvoline Instant Oil Change (VIOC) franchise program has offered car wash and independent quick lube operators an excellent way to expand their service offerings, maximize the return on their real estate investment and increase their revenue potential by capitalizing on the growing trend toward do-it-for-me automotive services and the strength of the Valvoline brand name. There are nearly 100 single- and multi-unit franchisees (including a number of individuals who also operate car washes) and 329 units nationwide.

Adding a VIOC center to an existing car wash provides exceptional cross-marketing opportunities. It lends a competitive edge over car wash locations that do not have quick lubes and provides a well-known, popular brand to compete with those that do. VIOC's proven system and ongoing operational and marketing support also give car wash operators many ways in which to capitalize on the advantages of adding a quick lube: the program requires less capital investment and less equipment maintenance than opening a new car wash, enhances customer convenience through "one-stop shopping," draws on the existing customer base for the location and balances the peaks and valleys of car wash demand.

Advantages/Features "VIOC franchisees are our marketing partners," the company says. "In return for helping us enhance the strength, extend the reach and deliver the promise of quality that the Valvoline brand name represents, we offer them continuous support." This support includes:

• MVP (Maximum Vehicle Performance(tm)): a state-of-the-art, computer-based vehicle-maintenance tracking system currently in operation at all VIOC service centers and accessible via the Internet at Rather than just blanket service reminders at standard intervals, MVP keeps an ongoing history of vehicle service and mileage, allowing VIOC operators to provide more timely reminders geared to meet specific driving habits and needs. Customers are issued cards accepted at VIOC centers nationwide, producing invaluable fleet-marketing opportunities while encouraging repeat business from current customers.

• Land/Building Financing: VIOC offers qualified franchise owners financing programs for land and building construction at attractive rates.

• Real Estate: VIOC's real estate representatives educate, assist and consult on the identification, development and purchase of property.

• Site-Selection Tool: VIOC offers proprietary site-selection modeling tools as well as demographic tools, Precision Code modeling to identify where your customers live, cannibalization reports that provide assistance in determining proximity of new sites and entire market optimization reports.

• Construction Assistance: The VIOC project manager provides prototype plans on disk and aids with construction issues.

• Equipment Leases: Franchisees lease all lube equipment from VIOC for just $1 per year.

• Oil Pricing: Franchisees realize benefits of preferred product pricing.

• Marketing Support: Franchisees benefit from both VIOC's and Valvoline's support of their national brand identities. Professional advertising and public relations support is available to all franchisees.

• POS System/SuperPro: Proprietary operating system that provides the following benefits: labor scheduling, inventory management, Internet monitoring, red flag reports, computer technician support, computer maintenance support, theft controls, customized customer comments, improved customer service, reduced claims, new employee handbooks, training manuals, interview guides, demonstrated professionalism and improved employee retention.

• Pre-Opening Training Support: Extensive seven-week training program. Program includes five weeks at VIOC headquarters in Lexington and two weeks on site.

• Ongoing Training Support: FBCs (Franchise Business Consultants) provide ongoing training assistance in all facets of the business.

Recommended Facility Structure Two- or three-bay drive-through formats with full basement and floor openings. Two-bay dimensions: 46' x 30', three-bay dimensions: 59' x 30'. Oil tanks above ground, but in basement.

Labor Requirements Separate facility manager to oversee quick-lube customer service; number of technicians required varies with daily car counts and extra services performed.

Operator Support The VIOC program supports every facet of business, from managing operations and personnel to analyzing demographics in the site-selection process to ongoing employee training, advertising, public relations and environmental consultation. VIOC's Franchise Advisory Council provides a forum to benchmark ideas with other franchisees.

Financial Requirements Qualification requires net worth of $200,000, with $150,000 in cash or liquid assets. In some markets, existing facility conversions can reduce start-up costs significantly.

Contact Valvoline Instant Oil Change (David Young, franchise sales manager). Toll free: (800) 622-6846. Fax (859) 357-7049. Or visit the VIOC Franchising web site at

Oilstop Inc.
Rohnert Park, California

Oilstop Inc. offers independent car wash operators a comprehensive, Drive Thru Oil Change
franchise opportunity program unlike any other with the option to co-brand with Chevron, 76, Exxon, or other major oil companies.

Advantages/Features When you become an Oilstop franchisee, you become part of one of the most well-respected, training-intensive franchises in the industry. With a nationally recognized industry presence, Oilstop has a mission statement that every franchisee must follow: "We will serve people with excellence, humbly, with a servant's heart." Building and signage design assistance is available. A proprietary computer point-of-sale system provides you immediate access to each guest's service history and measures the productivity of each member of your staff any hour of the day so you can monitor and reward service excellence.

Operator Support The Oilstop franchise program comes complete with 8 to 12 weeks of classroom and on-site training, and follow-up training on a regularly scheduled basis, both in person and in a series of training videos. Localized marketing, promotional and advertising campaigns will be designed for your market demographics, and you're just a phone call away from talking with the Oilstop management team to assist you in any way.

Contact Car wash operators seeking more information concerning any aspect of the franchise operation can call Gary Woo at (707) 586-2047. If there's a mutual interest, you will receive a packet of materials discussing the franchise opportunity in detail. You can contact Oilstop by e-mail at:, or visit our website,

Castrol North America
Wayne, New Jersey

Castrol Consumer North America is focused on the independent fast lubes' need for premium products packaged with the service, convenience and knowledge operators need to run a successful fast lube facility. By making significant investments in developing fast lube programs, Castrol has attracted the best independent lube operators in North America. Castrol is renowned for its fast lube programs and support services, in addition to being the supplier of high-quality, premium-branded products.

Advantages/Features Castrol Consumer North America markets premium lubricants and services directly to independent lube operators and automotive service providers. These business partnerships serve both the interest of Castrol and the local fast lube by delivering them premium branded products, unparalleled marketing support, extensive training and high margins. Castrol's extensive lubricant line includes Castrol(r) GTX(tm), Castrol(r) GTX High Mileage(tm), Castrol(r) Syntec Blend(tm) (part
synthetic motor oil) and Castrol(r) Syntec(tm) (full synthetic motor oil). The entire line is designed to provide different levels of superior protection, for all types of engines. Castrol also features a line of high-quality Super Clean car care products. Customer/Operator Support o Castrol offers a comprehensive training program for fast lube technicians. Castrol's computer-based Lube Tech Certification program has an unique interactive multimedia format that covers technician education, skills assessment, marketing, sales training and certification.

Architectural Services Castrol offers a customized program that features a team of trained professionals to design and build automotive facilities. Included is an architectural-concept design assistance center with state-of-the-art CAD/CAM systems.

Bulk Marketing Program Designed to increase the average per car revenue through a comprehensive program to sell synthetic motor oil, this program delivers improved consumer offers, promotions, training and exclusive mobile equipment (The SYNTEC Booster) that allows the realization of price efficiencies from bulk oil.

Equipment Loaned equipment programs including a complete line of lube and shop equipment and tools. Turnkey solutions drive additional profits through equipment alliances and upgrades.

Marketing Castrol has the highest co-op available in the industry. Signage is provided at no charge to operators. Promotional allowances permit customers to earn up to 100% of costs by featuring and promoting Castrol. A full line of merchandising tools and point-of-sale materials is also available.

Customer Warranty Castrol's Maximum Protection Warranty protects the customer's engine for up to 500,000 miles. Also offered is a free roadside assistance program at no cost and no hassle.

Financial Assistance Plan Castrol offers a wide range of financial assistance programs.

Contact Castrol North America, 1500 Valley Road, Wayne, NJ 07470. Toll free: (888) CASTROL. Web site:

Grease Monkey
Denver, Colorado

Grease Monkey is the largest vehicle preventive maintenance franchise not owned by a major oil company in the US, with more than 200 centers in 30 states and Mexico.

Advantages/Features Grease Monkey's independence allows franchisees to focus on meeting the needs of the customer, without being required to promote a certain brand of oil. It also allows for more aggressive purchasing power within the industry so that franchisees can obtain affordable products and services to build and run a successful operation.

Preventive Maintenance Center/Car Wash Businesses A Grease Monkey center and car wash facility can be an extremely profitable venture with the cross-over and referral business between the two businesses. The marriage of capabilities between the two centers creates a certain synergy resulting in a higher level of customer satisfaction for both, as well as a uniquely streamlined and efficient management process. Combining the two businesses, which offer complementing services to the same customer base, these operators are maximizing their profitability and the potential for higher returns on their investment. Grease Monkey provides the support needed every step of the way.

Operator Support Grease Monkey offers a comprehensive support package from the time the franchisee selects a site for their location, through ongoing operation of the lube concept. The Grease Monkey program includes site selection assistance, lease and purchase negotiations, third-party financing options, and national account purchasing. Franchisees are assisted with technical training and marketing and operations consultation. Grease Monkey has one of the most progressive marketing teams in the industry, including a central marketing division as well as field marketing staff who visit centers and provide local center marketing support. Grease Monkey centers also benefit from a corporate team that provides new product and service research and development, as well as program roll-out and continued support. Along with comprehensive business planning advice, and technical and marketing support, franchise owners benefit from the Grease Monkey brand and established reputation in achieving success.

Contact Grease Monkey, 633 17th Street, Suite 400, Denver, CO, 80202. Toll free: (800) 364-0352. Web site:

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