Industroclean regains independence with buy-back from Nilfisk

The industrial cleaning industry will take on a more familiar hue with the announcement that Nilfisk SA has sold the business to the company’s local management. The result of this deal, effective from January 2019, is that the company has assumed its original name, Industroclean.

“We’re extremely excited to announce that our business is returning to its South African roots following the decision by the Danish group to refocus its operations,” says Emma Corder, managing director of Industroclean. “We continue to have a very strong relationship with Nilfisk and remain its sole distributor in South Africa.”

The rebranding and repurchase of the business is the latest chapter in a local success story that started in 1980. Industroclean quickly grew in size and the range of services and brands it offered. Its relationship with Nilfisk was formalised in 2010 when the company was appointed exclusive distributor in the region, and the Danish manufacturer took a stake in the business.

This transaction followed the acquisition two years earlier of Wap South Africa by Nilfisk. When, in 2014, the Danish company bought the remaining Industroclean shares it didn’t own, it merged this business with Wap South Africa.

Corder says recent executive changes and the group’s listing on the Copenhagen Stock Exchange in 2017 prompted a strategic review of the local operations.

“In terms of their model overseas, they are very much a machine, services and parts-focused organisation. And the historical Industroclean model has always been a full-service, one-stop-shop for machines, janitorial equipment, accessories, consumables and chemicals.

“I think that having now been separated out from Nilfisk we once again have the flexibility to promote other brands and to do more product development and invest in our other ranges. We continue to have a very strong partnership with them and they are very committed to ensuring that we succeed. They understand the importance of having a footprint in South Africa in order to move into the rest of Africa.”

For Industroclean, it will be business as usual as all operations, services and facilities remain unchanged.

The company has established a leading market position as the local manufacturer of WAP pressure washers and cleaning machinery, and supplier of a wide range of locally produced and imported cleaning chemicals, materials and accessories.

Corder says the new-found independence means it can refocus efforts on traditional strengths in the business.

“We have a lot more space to expand the range of international brands that we represent, and we have more scope to do product development on the chemicals we produce locally,” she says.

This, Corder adds, will have a positive impact on the service and quality levels that customers can expect. And will stand it good stead as Industroclean casts it’s eye to opportunities on the rest of the continent.

“Africa is exceptionally important to us. We have seen there are huge opportunities for growth there and one of the challenges for countries in sub-Saharan Africa is the availability of products in those areas. So, it will be a significant focus area for us in the next twelve months.”