SOURCE: Linde AG

March 28, 2007 05:39 ET

Fred Butler®: Linde Launches Europe-Wide Roll-Out of Eco-Friendly Dry-Cleaning Brand

MUNICH, GERMANY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- March 28, 2007 -- The Linde Group

-- Plans for around 200 Fred Butler® areas across Europe by 2011

-- Investment of 50 million euros

-- Several thousand jobs to be created across Europe

-- Eco-friendly cleaning process awarded Blue Angel certification

The Linde Group is to roll out its Fred Butler® brand across Europe -- offering dry-cleaning services based on an eco-friendly process that uses carbon dioxide.

"Fred Butler is a prime example of the many applications for industrial gases," says Professor Dr Wolfgang Reitzle, chief executive officer of Linde AG, "We are committed to developing this business model, investing around 50 million euros in outlets and cleaning facilities by 2011. Through Fred Butler, we will make a sustainable contribution to protecting the earth's climate -- and to creating new jobs."

Over the next five years, Fred Butler® aims to establish thousands of new jobs across Europe. These plans were announced today at a press conference in Munich by CEO Andreas Klensch. The franchising company is currently opening shops in Munich, kick-starting a Europe-wide roll-out of the brand. At the press conference, the company was also awarded Blue Angel environmental certification by Matthias Machnig, State Secretary of the Federal German Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. The Fred Butler® cleaning method uses recycled carbon dioxide. As a result, it is not only more environmentally friendly, but is also far gentler on clothes than conventional dry-cleaning techniques.

Plans for 200 areas across Europe by 2011

Following a highly successful market trial in Frankfurt, Fred Butler® has now opened two outlets in Munich (in Wasserburger Landstrasse and Rosenheimer Strasse) and a central cleaning facility in nearby Feldkirchen. "This year, we will set up a further nine cleaning facilities -- so-called areas -- in major German economic centers. Six of these will be run by franchisees" says Klensch. The company is planning to create 33 more areas Europe-wide in 2008. And it aims to establish 50 per year between 2009 and 2011. That will take the total to almost 200, providing jobs for several thousand people.

The Fred Butler® principle

The Fred Butler® cleaning technique is based on recycled carbon dioxide: no toxic chemicals or high-speed spin cycles are required. This prevents skin irritation and, according to a study carried out within the scope of the EU Life initiative, makes clothes last 30 to 40 percent longer. Moreover, the process is suitable for items that, until now, could not be dry-cleaned -- such as leather or extremely soiled industrial work clothing. In addition, Fred Butler® offers innovative added-value services: including setting up collection points at companies such as banks, insurance firms, publishing houses, etc. -- and cleaning and returning clothes within 48 hours.

Fred Butler® is a brand of Cleaning Enterprises GmbH, a wholly-owned subsidiary of leading industrial gases and engineering company, the Linde Group. Cleaning Enterprises GmbH is headquartered in Pullach, near Munich, Germany and employs around 100 people.

The Linde Group is a world leading industrial gases and engineering company with more than 51,000 employees working in around 70 countries worldwide. Following the acquisition of The BOC Group the company has gases and engineering sales of approximately 12 billion euro. The strategy of The Linde Group is geared towards earnings-based growth and focuses on the expansion of its international business with forward-looking products and services. For more information, please see The Linde Group online at http://www.linde.com

Press Release as pdf: http://hugin.info/125064/R/1114993/203370.pdf

Contact Information

  • For additional information:

    Cleaning Enterprises GmbH
    Frauke Kollmorgen
    Tel.: +49 (0)89 7446-1621
    Email Contact

    The Linde Group
    Stefan Metz
    Tel.: +49 (0)89 35757-1322
    Email Contact