Forbes had a profile this week on a man living in India who has revolutionized the car wash industry in his country. The business model for waterless, mobile detailing and washing might sound common place because so many exist here in the states. But Forbes points out that Chirag Shah was really capitalizing on the intersection of a few problems and recent trends in India when he came up with the concept locally.
“A couple of years ago, I started running in the mornings and every day, when I was returning around seven in the morning, cars were being washed with zero knowledge and incorrect materials,” says Refreshed founder and CEO Shah. “They were just using a dirty rag and water – the same rag for the outside, the inside, the floor, on the wheel.”
Here are a few things that came into play. First, the idea of a family car has become a recent status symbol in India. More and more families are able to buy them and take a certain pride in maintaining them, especially when it comes to resale value. But Shah knew that the traditional automatic, brick and mortar car washes would not work in his country.
Still, with lack of water in India but constant dust, there was a definite need. So he decided on a mobile operation that streamlined the process. Rather than sending a handful of untrained workers to a single vehicle, he sends skilled workers to jobs where they use steam cleaners. Refraining from major water use means they are also able to eliminate water puddles, hence reducing mosquitoes and the diseases they pass on.
For the full story on Shah, visit Forbes.