Annual Survey: Numbers Show Upswing in Distributor Biz Continues (Part 2)

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Average new laundry: 4.6 top loaders, 27.5 front loaders, 32.4 dryer pockets, 2,696 square feet

CHICAGO — The upswing in distributor business appears to be continuing, as the majority polled in American Coin-Op’s annual Distributor Survey once again enjoyed better business than the previous year, and is expecting overall 2015 sales to outdistance those of 2014.

Nearly three-quarters of distributors polled (68.3%) say that business—including sales of newly constructed self-service laundries and replacement business—was better in 2014 compared to 2013. When it comes to sales projections, an even greater percentage (70.0%) believes 2015 sales will be better than 2014’s.

Roughly 10% of respondents say 2014 business was worse than 2013’s, while 21.9% say business has stayed the same.

Every distributor listed in the American Coin-Op Distributors Directory was invited to participate in this year’s unscientific survey, which charts 2014 business and makes comparisons to previous years.

EQUIPMENT MIX

Perfecting the right equipment mix is critical for a coin laundry store’s success. Wondering what equipment more and more store owners and distributors are installing in coin laundries across the country? Here is a quick analysis on trends, according to this year’s survey.

Sixty percent of new stores in 2014 had at least one top loader, a slight decline from 2013’s figure of roughly 63%. Looking back further, the percentage of new stores with at least one top loader was 45% in 2012 and 58% in 2011.

Coin laundries newly built in 2014 have an average of 4.6 top loaders, compared to an average of 4.5 per new store in 2013 and 3.4 per new store in 2012. (These figures factor in stores with no top loaders.)

Breaking it down, following are the most popular numbers of top loaders installed in new stores in 2014:

1) 0

2) 6

3) 10

4) 4 and 8 (tie)

When it comes to front loaders, newly constructed coin laundries in 2014 have an average of 27.5 front loaders, a slight increase from 2013’s average of 26.6, but slightly behind the 28.0 average of 2012.

The most common number of front loaders installed in newly constructed laundries in 2014 was:

1) 20, 25, 30 and 35 (tie)

5) 10 and 45 (tie)

7) 34 and 40 (tie)

Newly constructed coin laundries in 2014 have an average of 32.4 dryer pockets, which is slightly below 2013’s average of 32.8. The average was 30.8 in 2012 and 34.1 in 2011, in comparison.

Following are the most common numbers of dryer pockets installed in newly built coin laundries in 2014:

1) 30

2) 20

3) 24, 40 and 50 (tie)

SURVEYING STORE SIZE

Are coin laundries taking up more real estate, or are store owners opting for more manageable, smaller stores?

Among the most popular store sizes, in square feet, reported in this year’s survey were 2,000; 3,500; 3,000; 2,400; and 4,000.

One-third (33.3%) of the stores constructed in 2014 are 2,000 square feet or less, while 36.1% are between 2,000 and 3,000 square feet. These figures compare to the 25% of stores measuring 2,000 square feet or less and the 59% covering between 2,000 and 3,000 square feet reported in 2013.

The largest newly constructed laundry built last year covers 7,500 square feet, while the smallest measures just 800 square feet, according to survey results.

The average newly constructed coin laundry store for 2014 covers 2,696 square feet. Prior averages were 2,663 square feet (2013); 2,754 square feet (2012); 2,721 square feet (2011); 2,663 square feet (2010); 2,712 square feet (2009); and 2,743 square feet (2008).

The average selling price of a newly constructed store—not including the cost of land and building—in 2014 was $360,394, compared to $368,214 in 2013, $386,591 in 2012, and $366,000 in 2011.

Monday’s conclusion: Facts and figures; other business; and the annual forecast

Missed Part 1 of this story? Read it HERE

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