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Sofa cleaning franchise grows 10 times in 6 years and plans to open 8 units abroad

Entrepreneur Fritz Paixão says that working with upholstery cleaning was never his life's dream, but that he embraced the opportunity when it arose. Created in 2015 in a condominium parking lot in Salvador, CleanNew is a network of franchises specializing in upholstery cleaning and shielding.

The expectation of the businessman is to increase revenues by 25%, reaching R$ 25 million at the end of this year, and expand operations in national and international territory. Today, CleanNew has 38 units spread across 22 Brazilian states and operates in three countries abroad – Argentina, Colombia and the United States.

How did the company come about? Paixão graduated in physiotherapy, worked with pisciculture (fish farming) and as a host of a TV show before embarking on the path of cleaning upholstery. When the business started, Paixão was going to get married and wanted to buy an apartment for the new phase of his life, but he didn't have the money for it.

It bet on washing cars inside luxury condominiums in Salvador to get a higher income and, over time, customers started asking the company to do the same service on upholstery inside their homes. “I invested in the necessary machinery and the customers themselves started making referrals. I saw that the business model was ready and I focused on the residential sector”, says the businessman.

During the day, company employees cleaned upholstery and, at night, washed cars. The high demand made it unsustainable to maintain both sides of the business and Paixão had to choose which path to follow. The decision was easy, based on a calculator: I earned BRL 250 washing 10 cars, the same amount I earned in an hour washing a sofa.

What makes CleanNew different for Paixão? Shielding is a waterproofing process created by the company. In addition to the technique developed by the company, franchisees use their own product that is not marketed.

Who can be a franchisee? Anyone interested in the area. Paixão says that the cost of the franchise varies from R$ 44,000 to R$ 140,000, depending on the size of the city – smaller cities have a lower cost. Price includes starter products, equipment, and franchise fee.

“My goal within the company is to transform the lives of our investors. Today we are not just looking for franchisees who have capital, we like stories, people who want to face the challenge”, says the entrepreneur.

The cost for international units ranges from $50,000 to $250,000 depending on the region.

What is the revenue expectation for this year? In 2015, the year the company was founded, revenue was R$150,000. The following year, when CleanNew adopted the franchise system, it increased to R$ 2.5 million. For 2021, the goal is to reach BRL 25 million.

Expansion strategies
By the end of the year, Paixão wants to open 50 units in Brazil, in addition to investing in brand internationalization strategies.

The company will open at least 8 new franchises abroad, which are already negotiated: two in the United States (in Orlando and Boca Raton), three in Colombia (in Barranquilla, Cali and Medellín) and three in Spain (in Madrid , Mallorca and Barcelona). The goal is to open 20 new units abroad by the end of the year. Italy is one of the countries under negotiation.

For the entrepreneur, internationalization was essential to give more credibility to the brand. Today, franchises abroad have some characteristics of their own to adapt to the reality of the countries they are in, whether with changes in the way of offering the service or related to the company's legal issues.


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