London launderette goes contactless with new web app

An environmentally focused launderette in King’s Cross, London has launched a brand new web app in an effort to not only avoid going under but innovate the age old launderette business as the economic effects of the coronavirus begins to bite.

The 1 Stop Wash web app allows customers who are working from home or self-isolating to get their laundry and drycleaning picked up and delivered via a few taps through their phone, it also allows customers to personalise their cleaning preferences such as using bio or non bio detergents. The web app is now available to use in selected London postcodes and offers a wide variety of services.

With fifty percent of the UK’s workforce adapting to the ‘new normal’ and working from home and with millions of people self isolating, COVID-19 has led to less people leaving their homes to use small local businesses such as launderettes and drycleaners. This has put the futures of many independent cleaners in severe jeopardy.

On-demand tech laundry and drycleaning apps already exist but they are known to be expensive due to them acting as middlemen and farming out cleaning to third party companies. With little to no control of the cleaning process, these companies are forced to use facilities which continue to use harmful chemicals such as PERC in their cleaning processes; this chemical has been classified as a probable carcinogen by the EPA.

1 Stop Wash is aiming to bring the traditional local launderette and drycleaner experience straight to the customer’s doorstep by offering a more sustainable business model compared to its tech counterparts. The service exists everyday between a tight two-hour time slot as opposed to offering multiple time slots throughout the day like their competitors. This has allowed them to offer cheaper prices as they save up to 50 per cent on fuel costs and 70 per cent less in driver worked hours as well as cutting the middleman from the process.

Post-Covid will be a difficult period for many high street launderettes and drycleaners as demand has dropped for traditional shirts and suits as many find themselves now acclimatising to working from home. This in turn has ramped up the urgency for many local launderettes to now fully digitalize their services and offer pick up and drop off as they look to survive the likely negative economic impact of Covid-19.

Rohit Dhillon, director of operations at 1 Stop Wash joined his family’s small laundry business last summer and was successfully growing the business until the pandemic disrupted his plans: “The impact of the pandemic was felt overnight, I went from planning to scale up to wondering how we’d survive this sudden downturn in business. We supported our community during the pandemic by offering free laundry to the elderly and worked hard behind the scenes to quickly create an affordable and eco-friendly online service that our customers demand. The reaction has been fantastic in our first week and we can’t wait to release our app.”

The UK laundry and drycleaning market is worth nearly £2 billion and online services for this sector has had an incredible year on year growth rate of 16 per cent before COVID-19 struck. “Many app’s have burst on the scene to disrupt the age-old industry but some have also failed, mainly due to the rigid ‘on-demand’ business model. This was perfectly demonstrated when tech giant Laundrapp secured £15 million in funding before falling into administration in early February before being acquired by Inc & Co Group,” said Dhillon.

An environmentally focused launderette in King’s Cross, London has launched a brand new web app in an effort to not only avoid going under but innovate the age old launderette business as the economic effects of the coronavirus begins to bite.

The 1 Stop Wash web app allows customers who are working from home or self-isolating to get their laundry and drycleaning picked up and delivered via a few taps through their phone, it also allows customers to personalise their cleaning preferences such as using bio or non bio detergents. The web app is now available to use in selected London postcodes and offers a wide variety of services.

With fifty percent of the UK’s workforce adapting to the ‘new normal’ and working from home and with millions of people self isolating, COVID-19 has led to less people leaving their homes to use small local businesses such as launderettes and drycleaners. This has put the futures of many independent cleaners in severe jeopardy.

On-demand tech laundry and drycleaning apps already exist but they are known to be expensive due to them acting as middlemen and farming out cleaning to third party companies. With little to no control of the cleaning process, these companies are forced to use facilities which continue to use harmful chemicals such as PERC in their cleaning processes; this chemical has been classified as a probable carcinogen by the EPA.

1 Stop Wash is aiming to bring the traditional local launderette and drycleaner experience straight to the customer’s doorstep by offering a more sustainable business model compared to its tech counterparts. The service exists everyday between a tight two-hour time slot as opposed to offering multiple time slots throughout the day like their competitors. This has allowed them to offer cheaper prices as they save up to 50 per cent on fuel costs and 70 per cent less in driver worked hours as well as cutting the middleman from the process.

Post-Covid will be a difficult period for many high street launderettes and drycleaners as demand has dropped for traditional shirts and suits as many find themselves now acclimatising to working from home. This in turn has ramped up the urgency for many local launderettes to now fully digitalize their services and offer pick up and drop off as they look to survive the likely negative economic impact of Covid-19.

Rohit Dhillon, director of operations at 1 Stop Wash joined his family’s small laundry business last summer and was successfully growing the business until the pandemic disrupted his plans: “The impact of the pandemic was felt overnight, I went from planning to scale up to wondering how we’d survive this sudden downturn in business. We supported our community during the pandemic by offering free laundry to the elderly and worked hard behind the scenes to quickly create an affordable and eco-friendly online service that our customers demand. The reaction has been fantastic in our first week and we can’t wait to release our app.”

The UK laundry and drycleaning market is worth nearly £2 billion and online services for this sector has had an incredible year on year growth rate of 16 per cent before COVID-19 struck. “Many app’s have burst on the scene to disrupt the age-old industry but some have also failed, mainly due to the rigid ‘on-demand’ business model. This was perfectly demonstrated when tech giant Laundrapp secured £15 million in funding before falling into administration in early February before being acquired by Inc & Co Group,” said Dhillon.

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