Smelling An Opportunity

According to The New York Times, for more than a decade, some of the nation’s shrewdest marketers have tried to muscle in on the neighborhood dry cleaner, only to give up after years of labor and millions of dollars in investments.

Undeterred, Procter & Gamble is taking a shot at it, again. Having persuaded Americans to buy synthetic laundry detergent, fluorinated toothpaste and disposable diapers, P.& G. believes it has finally cracked the code on the dry cleaning business, too.

Where other dry cleaning entrepreneurs have tried to come up with clever business models for dry cleaning, P.& G.’s primary innovation is in the brand name itself: Tide Dry Cleaners, named after its best-selling laundry detergent.

Tide will draw people into the franchise stores, and superior service – which includes drive-through service, 24-hour pickup and cleaning methods it markets as environmentally safer – will keep them coming back, company officials predict.

Among the Tide believers is Rick DeAngelis, a 40-year-old who is planning to open a franchise in suburban Cincinnati next year.

“It’s been a trusted name in laundry for 60 years,” he said. “It’s almost synonymous with laundry.”

Photo by minyanville.

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