One of the biggest trends or if I dare to say ‘keywords’ this year in the laundry business will be ‘Sustainable Business Practices’. What do they really mean or rather how does one achieve it. Of course, every business has its own path, however a few simple measures taken can see results in the long run. In this issue, we have listed out a few, however, we want to open out the floor to you. Share your ‘sustainable business practices’ with us and let’s try and bring in better best practices into the region.
JustClean co-founder says Kingdom made it easier than any other Gulf country to set up business
Saudi Arabia is a prime hub for startups in the Middle East, and its understanding of online business surpasses that of other countries in the region, a young Arab entrepreneur said.
Athbi Al-Enezi, Co-Founder of Kuwait-based technology company JustClean, says Saudi was the easiest country in the Gulf to set up the marketplace application which connects hundreds of laundry services with thousands of consumers.
Among the speakers at ArabNet Riyadh, Saudi’s leading forum focused on digital business, Al-Enezi will tell entrepreneurs, investors and students that now is the right time for growth of startups in the Kingdom.
“Saudi is the largest market with the biggest population, and many changes are taking place, so some of the reasons are obvious,” said Al-Enezi. “But we were pleasantly surprised that we were able to set up JustClean operations here faster than anywhere else in the region.
“Naturally, we had learnt a lot from setting up the business in Kuwait before expanding into Bahrain and the UAE first. But we did not expect to be up and running in Saudi so quickly.
“Our business is taking laundries from offline to online, and connecting them with consumers, and we were helped by the fact that the understanding of online business in general is booming here.”
JustClean recently spread its Saudi operations from the Eastern Province to Jeddah and Riyadh, and plans to have a presence in all the Kingdom’s major cities as part of expansion plans which will take in overseas markets next year.
“If you want to be everywhere in Saudi, the risk is higher because of the size of the country,” said Al-Enezi, among the successful entrepreneurs featured in the Sawalif Riyadiya sessions at ArabNet, that took place at Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Center.
“To make things work, you need offices and teams in cities which are hours apart, so the amount of investment required is three times as much as in any other Gulf country. But the rewards are greater also.”
LaundrexNet to focus on digitised solutions
Organised by Messe Frankfurt India and Virtual Info Systems, the one-day conference Texcare Forum India - LaundrexNet will take place at the Bombay Convention and Exhibition Centre, Mumbai on 15 February.
The conference is being held concurrently with Laundrex India Expo 2020 and will highlight on digitalisation in laundry & dry cleaning business, introduction of newer and innovative technologies, elevating customer experience and future industry trends with impactful panel discussions.
Industry experts from Germany, UK, Singapore and India, including Elgar Straub, managing director of VDMA Textile Care, Fabric and Leather Technologies, Germany; Andrew Glassford, director, NewGen Business Services; Keith Tan Chee Meng, regional sales executive at Jensen; T M Nagarajan, vice president Wipro Water; Sagar Sodha, zonal head west at Jyothy Fabricare Services; and Venkata Chary, vice president Business Development at World Water Works India, are among other top speakers who will be addressing the laundry and dry cleaning industry.
The one-day conference is expected to witness a notable presence of over 150 attendees, and will emphasise majorly on textile care implementing industry 4.0 and challenges that come in hand with it.
The fourth industrial revolution will make the laundry supply chain systems more responsive, allowing businesses to reach end customers directly and tailor their business models accordingly with an opportunity of mass customisation and increased interaction.
Industry experts will also conduct a session on “How to Escalate Laundry Business Profits & Performances” to discuss proven practices to help increase profits for the dry cleaning and laundry business. Texcare Forum India is a sister event of Texcare International, the world market for modern textile care. The next Texcare International will be held in Frankfurt from 20 – 24 June 2020.
Texcare will focus on automation in the laundry
The productivity of a laundry depends on unbroken process flows and transparent commodity streams. The solutions required for automation in the sector are therefore a high priority at Texcare International, which takes place from 20 to 24 June in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. The focus will be very much on artificial intelligence and smart information systems, which will help maximise the degree of automation within the sector.
The be-all and end-all for the laundry sector is the ability to monitor the quantity, quality and storage location of the textiles that are circulating on site, at all times.
The data collected form the basis for precise price calculations, throw up any weak points in the system and serve to provide documentation for third parties. But it is only when all the machinery and plant involved in a given textile service are interlinked on a single network that the logistics of the laundry service run seamlessly, with minimal down-time of the machinery, reduced quantities in circulation and the resultant increase in productivity that is closely associated with it.
How to Make Your Laundry Operation Sustainable
A recent press release stated that a movement towards sustainable business practices could continue to escalate in the first years of a new decade. Leaders in the uniform, linen, and commercial laundry industry may be ready to evaluate their impact on local natural resources. A new trend in 'green' business practices may continue to gain attention in 2020.
Customers actively seeking eco-friendly services could focus on companies moving towards more sustainable business habits. Environmentally conscious corporate leaders can find water conservation an excellent area to make a positive change. Choosing an eco-friendly linen service to handle restaurant or hotel needs could help lower the impact on local natural resources.
So what exactly does ‘sustainability’ mean to laundry businesses? The term ‘sustainability’ hinges on many more factors than environmental friendliness—mostly other economic influences. For laundry businesses, and hospitality businesses that include laundry operations, true sustainability means considering all sides of conservation. That translates to limiting energy and water, as well as focusing on environmentally-friendly processes. It's about finding a holistic solution, not fixing one piece of the puzzle.
Every type of business devotes a large portion of its expense budget to labour, and hotel laundry is no different—the biggest expenses for laundry production are its supplies and associated labour. Clean Middle East put together a few steps on how to make your laundry operations more sustainable.
Traditional commercial laundry machines are notoriously wasteful, particularly when it comes to water and energy use. However, there are ways to reduce that waste and make your laundry operation more sustainable.
Step #1: Use cold water whenever possible
Water isn't the only resource gobbled up in laundry operations. It takes a surprising amount of energy to heat the water used in traditional washing machines, and cold water is just as effective at disinfecting linens.
Step #2: Monitor your usage
Today's technology gives us the chance to not only better monitor the cost of laundry operations, but the usage of individual resources. An AHLA survey found that for hotels, both in-room energy sensors and whole building energy management systems are becoming more common, and laundry software solutions allow you to take the same control over your hotel laundry service.
Step #3: Upgrade to low-water laundry machines
With Hydrofinity near-waterless laundry systems, you save water, energy and detergent on every load. You can reduce energy usage in your laundry operations by up to 50%, and water usage by up to 80%.