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Martinizing Dry Cleaning is a dry cleaning franchise founded in 1949. Martin Franchises, Inc., the parent company, is the largest dry cleaning franchise in the United States, with over 450 franchised stores worldwide. The family-owned company is based in Loveland, Ohio. The concept of One Hour Martinizing was pioneered by a New York chemist named Henry Martin in 1949. At the time, dry cleaning was done with flammable solvents, so the plants were located remotely from the storefronts. A customer would drop off their cleaning "in town", the garments would travel to the production facility to be cleaned and pressed, then they would return to the store several days later for pickup. By using a non-flammable solvent, the use of which was discovered by Martin, dry cleaning plants could now be located much more conveniently, and the process could be carried out in a much more timely manner. The use of this non-flammable solvent was adopted throughout the industry and revolutionized the business in that facilities could better serve their customers and provide much faster turn-around on the orders, if need be. Operationally this has been termed "on-site cleaning" (as opposed to the "remote" cleaning of the past).
Originally known as One Hour Martinizing, because customers could get their garments as little time as an hour. Martin Equipment Company was founded to produce the special equipment to clean the garments. Later, Martin Equipment Company became part of American Laundry Machinery in Ohio. The number of Martinizing franchises grew quite large during the 1950s and the 1960s. At that time, there was a flat annual fee that the franchisor would pay. As a Martinizing franchisee, you had to have a certain brand of equipment, and had to follow certain procedures. The concept was that there would be consistency from franchisee to franchisee. Phrases such as "Fresh as a Flower in Just one Hour" and "the Most in Drycleaning" were part of the trademarks.
According to Entrepreneur.com, the company has been steadily losing U.S. franchises.
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