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Legendary Success

[ 0 ] Dec. 10, 2010 | SBO Editor

Since its founding in 1935, Von Schrader has become one of the best known and most respected names in the cleaning industry.Over the years, more than 50,000 enterprising individuals have started their own professional cleaning service businesses using the company’s air cell technology cleaning systems and proven business methods. This is a perfect business for anyone to start and run from their home base.

Von Schrader Company’s heritage begins with an enterprising young man named Francis Von Schrader who in 1935, in the midst of the Great Depression, dreamed of helping people find ways to help themselves. He left his position with a nationally known company in the carpet-cleaning field and started the Von Schrader Company with an ambitious goal and a shoestring investment – less than $5,000.

What Fran, as he preferred to be called, wanted to sell was not merely carpet cleaning equipment, but opportunity – a chance for industrious individuals to develop and build prosperous, independent businesses. Each individual who became affiliated with him and the company through use of Von Schrader equipment and programs came to be called a Von Schrader “Associate,” and as they prospered so did the Von Schrader Company.

Today, some seventy-five years later, Von Schrader Company proudly works with more than 50,000 Associates worldwide and has expanded its business to include many major industrial clients.

The original Von Schrader Company had only 200 sq. feet of manufacturing and office space and two employees. Only two products were produced, a carpet cleaning machine and a coconut oil shampoo.

Fran firmly believed the only way to assure true quality control for his products and continued growth for the company was to manufacture all the components of the machine in-house. The pursuit of quality led the Von Schrader Company to be the first company in the Americas to manufacture synthetic detergents. This was the beginning of the famous Von Schrader Anti-resoil crusade.

Today, Von Schrader Company manufactures five different cleaning systems including carpet, upholstery, and wall/ceiling systems with a wide array of Green Seal Certified cleaning agents and has distributors and Associates in over fifty countries worldwide.

In 1986, Francis Von Schrader retired from the company and today Ernie Middleton is President. Under his guidance, the company continues its leadership in the on-location cleaning industry that it pioneered.

Francis Von Schrader believed if there was a better way to do a cleaning job, this company could create it. The company philosophy is: “We remain committed to innovation and to being on the forefront in adapting our equipment to meet the maintenance challenges professional cleaners and contractors face each day. We remain true to our philosophy: to produce quality products to serve the ever-changing needs of the end user.”

The need for portable carpet cleaning systems that could be taken directly into homes and businesses grew in the 1930s because wall-to-wall carpet became very popular. Francis Von Schrader read the trend well and pioneered the concept of cleaning carpet on-site rather than removing it for off-site cleaning. All carpets at the time were woven, and nearly all of them were woven of wool. This required a system that employed a minimum amount of water to avoid the intolerable shrinkage problems; hence, the development of the Dry Foam Extraction Cleaning System.

Today, the original encapsulation system is known as “Air Cell” technology. The earliest Von Schrader machines were called “rug washers” and “carpet detergers,” and the company’s advertising promised to “clean carpets to the bottom.” Today, we manufacture two systems for carpet care, and both are based on the Dry Foam Extraction principle.

In 1967, Von Schrader Company launched its international marketing program. Fran was especially proud of the Presidential “E” Award, which was conferred by the Department of Commerce for our spectacular achievement in international trade. Specifically, the “E” award was presented to honor the company for its ability to increase dollar volume and the percentage of total sales going into exports. Very few companies have won this award.

Von Schrader state-of-the-art equipment has been modified to comply with electrical codes in the various countries in which it is used. Strong, but lightweight, packaging designs have been created to reduce delivery costs and minimize damage during international shipment. “We continue to work aggressively with our contacts around the world to assure reliable performance, regardless of the varying demands of the local marketplaces.”

Today’s philosophy is an emphasis on customer contact and training. The company strongly encourages Associates, professional cleaners, and facility managers to become more successful in their profession through advanced and accredited courses in cleaning methodology. Since 1988, literally thousands of men and women have taken advantage of the introductory and accelerated classes in carpet, upholstery, wall and ceiling cleaning, and, more recently color loss repair, offered at company headquarters in Racine and “on the road.” Amazing successes!

According to Von Schrader, “We want the individuals who choose to use our equipment to be the most highly skilled and best informed in the business. People come to us knowing we are vitally interested in their success and that we will stay with them as they learn and build their expertise.”

In 1993, Von Schrader hosted the first International Training School for Von Schrader Japan and, in June 2010 the company began its 75th anniversary celebration. The 175th Professional Cleaners School will be held in Racine, Wisconsin.

“We continually strive to stay closely linked with all of our customers through communications such as the “Between Cleanings” newsletter and our National Academy of Von Schrader Associates (NAVSA). NAVSA members can get the opportunity to know one another on a more personal basis and to take advantage of networking opportunities through these channels. They receive technical information and a newsletter update on carpet cleaning developments as they occur,” says the company.

The company looks forward to a booming future and says the best is yet to come. Serving customers worldwide, as well as introducing new and diversified systems and accessories, Von Schrader Company stands ready to meet the “Green” challenges ahead. Given Von Schrader’s heritage and determination to serve, the challenge will be greeted with enthusiasm and continued innovation.

According to the experts at Von Schrader, “we don’t succeed unless you do. And, from more than 70 years of experience, we know that the most successful people are those who are expert-educated, highly-informed, and professionally-trained. That’s why we strongly encourage YOU to take your career to the next level by mastering the cleaning techniques and business acumen provided through the Von Schrader School.”

Anyone concerned with the cleaning and maintenance of interior furnishings —regardless of experience or expertise — can benefit, including:Professional Cleaners ,Von Schrader Associates,Executive Housekeepers,Architects and Specifiers,Building Owners and Property Managers,Carpet Mill Technicians, Service, and Sales Professionals,Distributor Management and Sales Personnel,and Entrepreneurs.

For more information on how to get started with your own Von Schrader opportunity, visit: www.vonschrader.com or call 800/626-6916 or 262-634-1956. The fax # is: 262-634-2888. The company address is: 1600 Junction Avenue, Racine, WI 53403. •

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Category: Magazine, Small Business Opportunities, Small Business Opportunities Nov 2010