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Laundromat start-up raises 55 million yuan

COLDSKY.CN – Chinese laundromat start-up qingyangkeji.cn has raised 55 million yuan ($8.1 million) in A+ financing, led by its core supplier, home appliances giant Haier, and an industrial fund of online classifieds platform 58.com, according to tech news portal 36kr.com.

Chinese can be particular about their laundry – they prefer air drying, assuming it’s healthier, so washing machines generally have no drying capabilities, and there are almost no self-service laundry facilities available at a community level, whether in Beijing or Shanghai.

Qingyangkeji, a spin-off of Beijing Haluo Baobei Tech and founded in December 2016, said it had already established more than 800 outlets in schools, hotels, factories and apartments in more than 21 cities, providing smart washing machines, dryers, and washing machines for shoes.

Of its more than 500,000 users, approximately half were based on university campuses, where students were able to wash their clothes with the aid of the now seemingly almighty WeChat public account or its applet and monitor the whole process from their cellphone.

Data provided by the team said the business revenue is more than two times higher than the industry standard. The company hopes to use laundry as a linking point to change the efficiency of the laundry market, estimated to be a 100 billion-dollar market.

It’s almost a cliché for Chinese tech start-ups to emphasize their service is more than a service but a bridge to other possible business opportunities.

The company will launch the “100 Cities Partner Program” to fully expand its presence, saying it has now standardized all aspects of its laundry service.

Zhang Miao, the managing director of Haier’s venture capital arm, said laundry and clothes care provide an important scenario to bring together users and community-level service, two criterions in sound investment logic.

Zhang also said a connection with users through intelligent hardware and big data-based supply chain management will enable Qingyangkeji.cn to offer low-cost and high-quality IoT laundry services in the future.

Qingyangkeji, which literally means Light Oxygen, also said on its official website it had installed 2,000 washing machines by November 2017 and reached one million orders in total by January. It also said the Haier washing machines boast a number of advantages including ozone disinfection.

The start-up’s core managers come from leading on-demand online services provider Meituan, laundry-on-demand service Edaixi, which suffered a shake-up last year, and search engine Baidu.

 

Author WeChat #ukingsun

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