In 1988, while attending the University of Central Florida, entrepreneur Darrell New started his own business by delivering dry cleaning to busy professionals in Orlando, Florida. He named his business “Valet Express” and after graduating, he found that his venture was not only fun and easy, but also profitable. He continued to develop the business with his wife and brother and began franchising in 1999. Today, he has over 100 franchise units across the United States.
1-800-DryClean franchises require a franchise fee of $14,900 plus a territory fee of $15,000. The total startup costs range from $60,000 to $72,000. 1-800-DryClean requires the minimum net worth of a franchisee to be $100,000 and a minimum cash requirement of $30,000. A royalty fee of 7% is also charged by the parent company.
1-800-DryClean boasts a simple startup and no rent or inventory required as it can be run as a home based business. They offer training and support in a variety of different ways including their “Right Start” training for new franchise owners. They also offer training on business planning, operations, and marketing. They do charge a marketing fee of slightly more than 1% of gross sales.
1-800-DryClean does not require owner operation but it is definitely encouraged. They also recommend more than one van and they advocate hiring, training, and managing additional drivers, office support staff, and marketers. They provide ongoing support via their intranet site, company publications, and conferences. Proprietary business management software is also provided to help manage schedules and routes.
As with any franchise opportunity, your success with 1-800-DryClean will depend on your ability to market your business and service. If you do not already know how to do this, or if you require further marketing training, I would suggest that you seek out additional resources to learn this critical skill.