Newsline - September 2003

Industry Newsline


Hanna Car Wash Systems International, LLC has announced the appointment of Kathleen Gardiner as director of marketing. Gardiner is responsible for developing and implementing Hanna's marketing strategies. Gardiner brings almost a decade of marketing experience to Hanna, having worked many years for a full-service advertising agency and later as marketing director for a chain of fast lubes. Most recently, she managed all marketing efforts for Integrated Services Inc., a provider of computer systems to the car wash and fast lube industries. Gardiner holds an MBA and received her Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Texas at Austin.

Trina Christiansen has been named marketing manager for Integrated Services Inc. (ISI). Christiansen will create advertising and collateral materials and oversee all planning/implementation of marketing strategies and budgets. Her responsibilities also include planning and promotion for trade shows and maintenance of the company web site. Christiansen brings a wide variety of marketing and public relations skills to ISI. Most recently, she worked in Business Development at DDB Worldwide's Seattle office. Christiansen received her bachelor's degree in Business Management from George Fox University.


A former Burger King restaurant on Shore Drive in Virginia Beach is now a unique car wash. Coastal Waterworks opened in mid-June to the delight of local customers longing for a full-service car wash. Alan Bunch, creator and owner/operator of the new car wash, expressed pride at how the building had turned out and delight at how quickly customers were discovering its services.

Bunch opened the $1.6 million Coast-Guard-Station-themed car wash just three months behind schedule. The 3,000-square-foot wash includes a 60-foot tunnel featuring Hanna Car Wash equipment,
a 1,000-square-foot lobby/gift shop offering refreshments, auto accessories and greeting cards, offices, and a 1,000-square-foot detail shop complete with tiled floor and authentically reproduced maritime windows and bay doors. The building also sports a tower modeled on a station lighthouse.


A&M Cleaning Products Inc, a manufacturer and distributor of premium cleaning products has been acquired by BioLab Inc., a subsidiary of Great Lakes Chemical Corporation. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. A&M has two product lines marketed under the brand names "Greased Lightning" and "Orange Blast." BioLab Inc., based in Lawrenceville, GA, is a provider of water treatment products for industrial and recreational applications, as well as specialty household consumer products.


Mark Curtis (left) and Chris Fisher of Splash flank Patty Benitez and her husband, Ralph.

Out of a field of 62 key winners, Splash Car Wash of Connecticut and New York presented Patty Benitez of Carmel, NY with a brand new 2003 Jeep Wrangler in its 2003 Wash It and Win Contest. This was the culmination of a four-week promotion that included all 15 of Splash's tunnels at 14 car wash locations. Each tunnel location gave away four keys per week for four weeks or 60 keys. Two bonus keys were given away on a local radio station for a total of 62 keys.

On Saturday, July 26, at the "Start Me up Party" held at Splash's Wilton, CT location, each key winner was given a chance to try his or her key in the ignition of the New Jeep Wrangler. Patty Benitez, number 46 in the line of 62, placed her key in the ignition, turned the key and to her surprise and amazement the engine started, making her the winner in Splash's fourth Jeep Giveaway in seven years.


Holland, OH-based Hamilton Manufacturing Corporation has announced that as of June
18, 2003, all production models XE and STA Validators include the software to accept the new $20 bills scheduled for release this fall. All XE Validators can be upgraded in the field simply with a new EPROM available now for a nominal fee. All STA Validators can be updated through Hamilton Manufacturing Corporation or any of its factory-trained service representatives. Contact your local Hamilton Distributor for further details or visit the company's web site at


Hanna Car Wash Systems has expanded its domestic and international distributor network, adding 10 new distributor territories and four new distributors so far this year.

The geographic increase in Hanna's territories is due to the addition of four new distributors and the expansion of an existing distributor. The new distributors are Intelligent Wash Systems (Colorado), Northwest Pump (Southern California), AWT (Italy), and PDQ of the Rockies (Utah, Idaho). Howco has expanded to include the territories of Delaware, Washington D.C., Maryland, Eastern Pennsylvania, and the northeast tip of Virginia.


Mace Security International Inc. (Nasdaq: MACE) has announced financial results for the quarter ended June 30, 2003 and the first half of 2003. Revenues for the three months ended June 30, 2003 were $12.3 million compared to $11.9 million for the same period of 2002, an increase of approximately $450,000. The increase was due to an increase in revenue by approximately $750,000 in the company's security products segment. This increase was partially offset by a decrease in car wash and detailing revenues in the second quarter of 2003 as a result, according to the company, of continued weather-related volume declines in its Texas, Florida and northeast regions. The volume-related decline in car wash revenues was partially offset by an increase in average wash and detail revenue per car from $13.96 in the second quarter of 2002 to $14.98 in 2003, a 7.3 percent increase.

Revenues for the six months ended June 30, 2003 were $24.9 million as compared to $23.6 million for the first half of 2002, an increase of $1.3 million, or 5.5 percent. The increase in revenues was due to the operations of the company's security products segment where revenues rose to $2.3 million from $400,000 in the first half of 2002. This increase was partially offset by a decrease in car wash and detailing revenues.


Following its first patent for Virtual Treadle(r) technology, PDQ Manufacturing Inc. has been awarded a second patent (Patent # US 6,551,415) identifying the unique control method that is used in the Virtual Treadle system. The first patent identified the specific devices and how they go together to perform the Virtual Treadle function while the second patent broadens the scope to identify the details of the methods used in the system. The Virtual Treadle features a driver-friendly open wash bay without guide rails or drive-on floor treadle. It safely accepts vehicles with any wheel configurations including low-profile sport wheels, "dually" pick-up trucks, and oversized SUV tires. The addition of the second Virtual Treadle patent adds to the intellectual property that PDQ has developed to aid the vehicle wash market.


Jack Flash Rainbow Wash, headquartered in Mount Pleasant, SC, has added a sixth Autec in-bay automatic. "They're writing the book on success with stand-alone in-bay automatics and setting the benchmark for car wash operators and investors across the country," commented Joey Stilley, Autec's national sales manager. Of the six units installed, one location includes self-serve bays in addition to the automatic. The Mount Pleasant location has two top-of-the-line machines, side-by-side, while two additional locations (Ashley Phosphate Rd. and Playground Rd. in the Charleston, SC area) feature Autec's newest car wash system, the Evolution(tm) combination wash, allowing consumers their choice of soft touch, touch free or a combination of both.


PDQ Manufacturing and Washing Equipment Technologies hosted a hospitality tent at the Watkins Glen NASCAR road race held in Watkins Glen, NY August 10, 2003. Over 110 people enjoyed a day that included pit tours, food, a personal visit with NASCAR Winston Cup driver and PDQ spokesperson
Ward Burton, and finish-line grandstand seats. Around 70 customers were in attendance, as well as Washing Equipment Technologies and PDQ Manufacturing employees.

Burton posed for pictures with event attendees, signed autographs and answered questions from the audience about everything from racing to car washing. PDQ partnered with Burton in February of this year. Burton, who drives the #22 Dodge Intrepid, promotes the company's full line of vehicle wash systems.

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