U.S. Exhibitors Pleased with Texcare International Results


Joe Ricci lecture image
Joseph Ricci, president/CEO of the Textile Rental Services Association, briefed Texcare attendees on the state of the U.S. textile services market during his lecture Tuesday as part of the Texcare Forum. (Photo: Bruce Beggs)

Bruce Beggs |

FRANKFURT, Germany — With Texcare International wrapping up today, many exhibitors with U.S. ties expressed delight in this year’s event and vow to return to the World Market for Modern Textile Care in four years.

Robin Thurgood, vice president and general manager of Rennco, brought his Michigan company’s industrial laundry packaging solutions to the show and found attendees intrigued by the prospect of packaging linens automatically rather than by hand.

“This is our first foray into Europe,” Thurgood says. “I’m not sure there’s anything like us over here yet. I’m not sure they’ve gone into this style of packaging. They’re all very interested.”

Dexter Laundry exhibited at Texcare in hopes of opening up new on-premise and coin laundry markets for its washers and dryers, according to Kevin Hietpas, vice president of sales and marketing.

“Honestly, I think we’re more ready for the customers on the coin side, but we’re seeing what the OPL market is like here in Europe and elsewhere in the world, what those customers need,” Hietpas says. “I think we’re close on some counts (and) we’ve got additional product development to do in other areas.”

Dexter has used the show to establish new contacts and will follow up with many potential opportunities with a long-term view, he adds.

The largest booth in the exhibition belonged to Germany’s own Kannegiesser, and Phil Hart, executive vice president of Kannegiesser USA, says the company’s founder is devoted to exhibitions and displaying a full range of high-technology products and systems to the industry.

“It’s been a very full booth,” Hart says. “The number of visitors has been quite high. And the variety. It really is a worldwide show. One of the side benefits of this is we can introduce customers from various parts of the world and just let them talk, let them compare notes and there’s a certain synergy that goes on at that point.”

Sustainability was a buzzword for this exhibition. AquaRecycle President Jeff Lebedin found that it wasn’t water recycling that had visitors to his booth talking but rather the recycling of dryer exhaust made possible by his company’s ThermalRecycle equipment.

“There are a lot of centralized laundries in Europe, and they do a lot of tunnel washing,” says Lebedin, whose company is based in Georgia. “We just don’t see a huge market yet for recycling water, but when it gets into the dryer part of it, recycling dryer exhaust is in its infancy in our industry because very few companies know what it costs them to dry their linen.”

There were 264 exhibitors from 26 nations represented at the five-day show. The United States was third in number of companies attending behind host nation Germany and Italy.

About the author

Bruce Beggs

American Trade Magazines LLC

Editorial Director, American Trade Magazines LLC

Bruce Beggs is editorial director of American Trade Magazines LLC, including American Coin-Op, American Drycleaner and American Laundry News. He was the editor of American Laundry News from November 1999 to May 2011. Beggs has worked as a newspaper reporter/editor and magazine editor since graduating from Kansas State University in 1986 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and mass communications. He and his wife, Sandy, have two children.


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