Companies in this industry provide cleaning, washing, and waxing services for cars, trucks, vans, and trailers. Major US companies include Autobell Car Wash, Mister Car Wash, Blue Beacon International, Wash Depot, and Zips Car Wash (all based in the US), along with IMO Car Wash Group and Mr Wash Autoservice (both based in Germany) and Uhoda (Belgium).
Demand is driven by new car sales and growth in consumer income. The profitability of individual firms depends on favorable location and efficient operations. There are few economies of scale. Chains have advantages in advertising and customer recognition. Small firms can compete successfully by having good locations. The industry is highly fragmented: the 50 largest US companies hold less than 20% of the market.
Products, Operations & Technology
Major services are exterior wash, exterior and interior cleaning, waxing, underside cleaning, vacuuming, and premium detailing. Detailing services consist of intensive interior and exterior cleaning, as well as waxing and polishing by hand. Some facilities offer vehicle maintenance and repair and safety inspection services and sell automotive products.