Just a few decades ago, stay-at-home mothers worked as maids while teenaged boys mowed lawns and raked leaves. Over time, these part-time money makers transformed into lucrative, full-time careers for men and women. Consider how cleaning services have become a multi-million dollar enterprise over the past fifty years.
The Need for Insurance
It was easy to hire the lady around the corner to clean your house before the holidays. She would be there in a few minutes and accepted cash to get the job done. Soon offices started to hire local people to clean up. The workload increased and locals would bring a helper to get the job done. This was the beginning of cleaning businesses as we know them today.
With more jobs and workers on board, there were greater risks. Items could get lost, broken or stolen during the cleaning process. A worker could trip over a faulty floorboard and get hurt. The need for insurance became evident. Now most people want to hire a cleaning company with a license, insurance and reliable transportation to the job. The days of walking around the corner to go to work are over.
The Popularity of Franchising
Typically, the start-up costs to start small cleaning businesses are minimal. The business needs to have a few cleaning supplies and transportation. Some cleaning companies request the client provide the supplies to ensure the job is done the way they want it. As clients request additional services such as steam cleaning, the cleaning crew might need to make additional investments. It is can also be costly to get a license and insurance as well as market the business.
Franchising takes the mystery out of starting and registering a cleaning business. People who want to pursue this career already get in on the ground floor of a well-established business people have heard of. The need to market their business is minimal. They can get to work right away rather than canvassing for clients. Today there are many lucrative cleaning franchises as well as large cleaning companies that choose to work independently.
Saving Money on Renovations
Hiring a cleaning service is a way to revamp your home or office space without investing in costly renovations. Businesses want a clean, professional environment where workers and clients feel comfortable. Residences need to be healthy and well-organized to keep people happy and well. Having a professional cleaning service maintaining the place on a schedule keeps it ready for occupants and visitors.
A clean space also looks more valuable. Even if the premises are old, they can be properly organized and tidy. This gives them a refreshed appearance without spending thousands of dollars on new furniture or updates. Many people hire a cleaning service to ensure their premises are always in the best possible shape.
Expanding Work Hours
Once upon a time, one parent stayed at home while the other went out to work. This meant there was someone at home to take care of the children, cooking and cleaning. This scenario has changed radically since most households require two incomes to survive. With both people working, it becomes impossible to handle all the little details such as cleaning the house.
Small businesses used to have a few people clean the facilities periodically. Now most workers are on the fast-track to success. They have no time left after a long day to start cleaning the workplace. As a result, cleaning services are needed to maintain offices and homes while their occupants are earning a living.
Years ago, few households were recycling or building a compost pile. Now businesses and residences are concerned about going green. People are aware of the environment and how trash can have a negative impact on natural resources. Certain areas also have regulations pertaining to recycling and how trash is disposed of.
Cleaning services know the proper cleansers to use and how to get rid of all kinds of trash. When people want to go green, they can consult with a reputable cleaning company to find out how to do it. A professional cleaning crew shows people the green way to clean and dispose of trash. This makes the premises and the world around us a cleaner and greener place.
The Growth of Niche Cleaning Services
When the largest office in town was a converted colonial home, there was no real need for niche cleaning services. Now there are skyscrapers with huge windows that can’t be reached by a regular person. They require special equipment and a person with experience washing corporate office windows. These types of structural changes lead to the growth of niche cleaning services.
Other niches have also developed over the years. For example, plush carpeting in office reception areas requires deep cleaning and steam cleaning. Hardwood floors need to be properly maintained and refinished when they show signs of wear and tear. There are also hoarding cleaning services to help people get rid of junk and establish a more organized environment. Niche cleaning services have further expanded cleaning enterprises.
The Expansion of Outdoor Living Areas
People want more room to unwind and entertain but might not be able to spend money to build an extension on their homes. It has become increasingly popular to establish luxurious outdoor living areas on decks, patios and balconies. These living spaces include outdoor kitchens, dining areas and living spaces. They also require specialized maintenance that is not typically done by a landscaper.
Additional niche cleaning opportunities have opened up to keep outdoor living spaces pristine. Outdoor furniture must be cleaned as well as barbecue grills, outdoor kitchen spaces and indoor/outdoor rooms. The ground needs to be swept and outdoor décor must be wiped down. All these items must be stored or covered during the coldest months of the year. Specialty cleaning services help homeowners keep these spaces clean and organized.
It is crucial for our health and overall well-being to maintain a clean workplace and residence. As more people hire cleaning services to handle their expanding responsibilities, the cleaning industry continues to grow by leaps and bounds. People from all educational backgrounds can enter this lucrative field, gain experience on-the-job and earn a good living doing it.
UK delays review of business rates tax until autumn
LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s finance ministry said it would delay publication of its review of business rates – a tax paid by companies based on the value of the property they occupy – until the autumn when the economic outlook should be clearer.
Many companies are demanding reductions in their business rates to help them compete with online retailers.
“Due to the ongoing and wide-ranging impacts of the pandemic and economic uncertainty, the government said the review’s final report would be released later in the year when there is more clarity on the long-term state of the economy and the public finances,” the ministry said.
Finance minister Rishi Sunak has granted a temporary business rates exemption to companies in the retail, hospitality, and leisure sectors, costing over 10 billion pounds ($14 billion). Sunak is due to announce his next round of support measures for the economy on March 3.
($1 = 0.7152 pounds)
(Writing by William Schomberg, editing by David Milliken)
Discounter Pepco has all of Europe in its sights
By James Davey
LONDON (Reuters) – Pepco Group, which owns British discount retailer Poundland, has targeted 400 store openings across Europe in its 2020-21 financial year as it expands its PEPCO brand beyond central and eastern Europe, its boss said on Friday.
The group opened a net 327 new stores in its 2019-20 year, taking the total to 3,021 in 15 countries. The PEPCO brand entered western Europe for the first time with openings in Italy and it plans its first foray into Spain in April or May.
Chief Executive Andy Bond said its five stores in Italy have traded “super well” so far.
“That’s given us a lot of confidence that we can now start building PEPCO into western Europe and that expands our market opportunity from roughly 100 million people (in central and eastern Europe) to roughly 500 million people,” he told Reuters.
To further illustrate the brand’s potential he noted that the group has more than 1,000 PEPCO shops in Poland, which has a significantly smaller population and gross domestic product than Italy or Spain.
The company, which also owns the Dealz brand in Europe but does not trade online, has already opened more than 100 of the targeted 400 new stores this financial year.
Pepco Group is part of South African conglomerate Steinhoff, which is still battling the fallout of a 2017 accounting scandal.
Since 2019 Steinhoff and its creditors have been evaluating a range of strategic options for Pepco Group, including a potential public listing, private equity sale or trade sale.
That process was delayed by the pandemic, but Steinhoff said last month that it had resumed.
“The business will be up for sale at the right time. It’s a case of when, rather than if,” said Bond, a former boss of British supermarket chain Asda.
Pepco Group on Friday reported a 31% drop in full-year core earnings, citing temporary coronavirus-related store closures.
Underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) were 229 million euros ($277 million) for the year to Sept. 30, against 331 million euros the previous year.
Sales rose 3% to 3.5 billion euros, reflecting new store openings.
($1 = 0.8279 euros)
(Reporting by James Davey; Editing by David Goodman)
Fashion-focused livery launch reveals new colours for Gasly, Tsunoda in 2021
Scuderia AlphaTauri debuted their colours for the 2021 Formula 1 season as drivers Pierre Gasly and Yuki Tsunoda unveiled the team’s new look with the livery for their AT02 racecars. The setting was a fashion-forward launch in the all-new showroom of AlphaTauri, Red Bull’s premium fashion brand.
Salzburg (AUSTRIA) – Formula 1 team Scuderia AlphaTauri served up a stylish preview of the new F1 season with a presentation of its 2021 livery alongside key looks from the upcoming Autumn/Winter 2021 collection of Red Bull’s premium fashion brand, AlphaTauri. The launch – held at AlphaTauri’s new showroom in Salzburg, Austria and presented digitally – marked the first time that drivers Pierre Gasly of France and Yuki Tsunoda of Japan have appeared together as teammates.
After a successful first season racing in AlphaTauri colours, the Italian outfit is looking to challenge the top of the ultra-competitive midfield in 2021, and the two young drivers have been assigned clear-cut roles. Gasly is Team Leader. The 25-year-old, who made his Formula One debut with the team in 2017 under its former name, Scuderia Toro Rosso, has earned two F1 podiums. During the 2020 campaign, Gasly’s maiden win at Monza was a defining moment for him and the team under its new name.
Tsunoda, 20, is the first Japanese driver to race in F1 since 2014, his promotion coming off the back of a fast, four-season trajectory from winning the 2018 F4 Japanese Championship and finishing third in the 2020 FIA F2 Championship to entering the top-level ranks this year. Expectations are high for his rapid style of learning to complement the experience of Gasly.
“The decision to go for Pierre and Yuki in 2021 was taken because Scuderia AlphaTauri’s philosophy is still to give talented young drivers from the Red Bull Junior Program the opportunity to step up to F1 and to educate them – this is why Yuki now gets his chance,” explained Team Principal Franz Tost. “With Pierre on Yuki’s side we have an experienced driver, who can help our Japanese rookie to develop faster, but at the same time we can aim for good results. I think this pair is the best possible scenario to achieve both our targets, and I’m also confident this will be a successful one.”
In 2020, Scuderia AlphaTauri won best livery by a landslide, and the team’s all-new, matte blue and white racecar livery took center stage with the drivers at the fashion event, anticipating the 2021 model that will debut at pre-season testing in Bahrain on 12 March. The test is the precursor to an unprecedented 23-race schedule, and in preparation for the demanding calendar both drivers have spent time at Red Bull’s Athlete Performance Center for intense fitness testing.
“I’m ready to take on the role of team leader. Yuki is a very quick driver, and he will help us move the team forward – we will work together to achieve that,” said Gasly, the team’s all-time top points scorer. “I really believe last year was the team’s best in terms of the way it worked, the development, the performance and the way it managed the race weekends. I’m always hungry for more, and I’m sure we can achieve great things in 2021.”
Tsunoda, who was honored with the Anthoine Hubert Award for best Formula 2 rookie in 2020, added, “I’ve been lucky enough to spend some time with Scuderia AlphaTauri ahead of the season, so I’m already developing strong relationships and learning a lot from them – including Pierre, who is an incredible talent. My main goal is to learn quickly and deliver results as soon as possible, and I’m really excited to get started.”
The launch at the AlphaTauri Showroom not only gave Gasly and Tsunoda a preview of the AlphaTauri Autumn/Winter 2021 fashion collection, but the drivers had the chance to select their new off-grid looks ahead of the season start.
Ahmet Mercan, CEO AlphaTauri, summarized: “This is a triple reveal at a unique point of time: a new AlphaTauri Showroom where fashion meets F1, a first look at the AW21 AlphaTauri collection and the unveiling of the new Scuderia AlphaTauri F1 livery and driver pairing.”
Scuderia AlphaTauri fans don’t have long to wait for racing action: The FIA Formula 1 season kicks off at the Bahrain Test on 12-14 March, in preparation for the Bahrain Grand Prix on 28 March.
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