The CEO and the new CLEAN vision
Posted on 16-Mar-2016
CLEAN has more than doubled in size in recent months with two acquisitions – Watford Launderers and Cleaners and Paragon Laundry – and the company’s ambitious plans for growth aren’t stopping there.
CLEAN’s chief executive officer Jason Miller explains what impact recent growth has had on the business and what his vision is for the company moving forward.
What has the recent acquisition of Paragon Laundry done to expand the business?
This is a very exciting and strategic acquisition for CLEAN. I have known Paragon and worked closely with the business over many years and the integration of the Paragon business into CLEAN is a logical development. Combining Paragon with CLEAN extends our market share in linen rental and doubles our workwear turnover.
The geographical synergies are excellent and this acquisition will significantly extend our UK coverage. It will also broaden our service offering and see us enter new markets with Special Occasion Linen. The transaction further extends our ownership of the Brilliant Laundry Group to become the single largest shareholder.
What challenges and opportunities has this growth presented?
The challenge is merging two separate companies into the one CLEAN brand, which is an administrative challenge. For example an employee previously working for Paragon might have the same role as a CLEAN employee at a different plant, however their job title might be completely different. The challenge is therefore to make job titles and job roles consistent across the board. Other challenges include merging previously separate head offices into one and switching employees onto the CLEAN payroll.
In terms of opportunities, acquisitions allow us to learn from the companies we acquire. Paragon had a fantastic special occasion linen service providing table setting products and ideas for corporate events, weddings and private functions. Thanks to the acquisition CLEAN is now geared up to supply special occasion linen and it’s a service we are actively looking to expand. We keep what works and remove what doesn’t. Every acquisition is an opportunity to learn better ways to do things.
What benefits can customers expect?
At CLEAN we operate as one giant laundry. The locations of the new plants and the streamlined routes our drivers operate mean if one of our plants sees a spike in demand during a peak operating period, another of our plants can meet the additional demand seamlessly. This ensures our customers always have the right amount of linen when and where they need it.
Another significant development for CLEAN is our investment in a world-class super laundry in Slough which is due to open later this year. We have taken everything we have learned so far and designed a facility that will provide our customers with the best service available. It will feature new technological advancements and embrace environmental considerations, focusing significantly on the optimisation of energy and chemical consumption.
The acquisitions and recent investment enable us to service our customers better. Customers are always at the centre of what we do and we want them to aspire to use our service.
What is your vison for the business in the next five years?
We don’t necessarily want to be the biggest but we do want to be the best. It’s CLEAN’s quality of service, integrity and most importantly the people who work for us that sets CLEAN apart. We are always looking to build for tomorrow and the next five years will see more acquisitions, investment and growth.