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How a Podcast Inspired Steve Ketterling to Sign on as LaundroLab’s First Franchisee

Ketterling recently inked LaundroLab’s first franchise agreement after working as a CFA and moving to Denver, Colorado.

By Justin Wick1851 Franchise Contributor
SPONSOREDUpdated 6:06AM 03/04/22

LaundroLab, the innovative, emerging laundromat concept from the Charlotte area, officially signed its first franchisee, Steve Ketterling, in Colorado. Ketterling has signed on to open three units in the greater Denver area.

Ketterling said it was a podcast, featuring LaundroLab co-founder Alex Smereczniak, that first got him interested in franchising with the brand. Smereczniak appeared on The Meb Faber Show and mapped out how LaundroLab has reimagined an industry and has quickly taken shape. Ketterling, a finance professional, took note and reached out to the brand — and eventually relocated to pursue this chance to partner with the brand. “I recently moved to Denver from Montana for this opportunity,” he said. 

Ketterling added that the emerging nature of the brand is a strength, and Ketterling wants to help LaundroLab reach its goal of becoming an industry leader. The LaundroLab team believes Denver can hold roughly 15 units, and they are rapidly preparing for even greater franchisee interest once Ketterling’s units are up and running.

“LaundroLab is in its first year of franchising, but we’re already making an impact in a $5 billion industry,” Smereczniak said. “We’re able to offer something previously unmatched in the laundromat industry, and we’re putting an upscale environment together for people that deserve a better service than what is currently offered.”

Ketterling’s first unit in Colorado is scheduled to open in early 2022. His goal is to open additional locations in the Denver market after his first three are established.

Ketterling previously worked for Morgan Stanley as a CFA and portfolio manager. While he doesn’t have previous franchising experience, Ketterling has enjoyed working with LaundroLab team and is eager to take advantage of a semi-absentee franchise model that has drawn franchisee interest across the country. 

Ketterling explained how he felt it was important to establish the LaundroLab brand in a larger market, and the cluster of population density in Denver was ideal for an emerging brand to take off. “I did some research on the area, and it felt like a good opportunity for a new player to enter the market,” he said.

His plan is to look to Denver and the surrounding communities for multi-unit expansion. While Ketterling’s operation will be established a long distance from LaundroLab’s corporate headquarters in Charlotte, he feels the available support will continue to present itself as first-class assistance.

“I don’t feel like distance is a thing,” he said. “When I was scouting locations, they were helping me target Denver as a great area.”

“We wouldn’t enter into this business if we didn’t believe in our ability to support franchisees across the country,” Smereczniak said. “We’re thrilled to have Steve joining us in one of the hottest markets there is, and we can’t wait for our franchise model to prove itself in an area that can truly benefit from our services.”

The liquidity requirements for a new LaundroLab franchise ranges from $321,000-$483,000. A new LaundroLab store can range anywhere from $1M - $1.7M, which includes equipment, buildout, franchise fee, working capital and more. For more information on franchising, visit