Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 36

PIONEERS IN THE FULL-SERVICE BUSINESS
BY LINDSEY QUICK
WATERWAY GAS & Wash is a fullservice car wash company with gas pumps
and a full convenience store with 20 locations in five states. For a company founded
by people who wanted an investment that
would be easy to run, the company has
turned into a place of incredibly hardworking, dedicated people from its frontline
staff up to its president and CEO.
And that's by design.

THE WATERWAY HISTORY

Henry Dubinsky co-founded Waterway
Gas & Wash in the late 1960s with a group
of friends looking for a simple investment.
"Of course, we picked the car wash business, but we were very wrong about whether
it would be hard to run," Henry said. "We
thought it could be run without any of us
in the business, but after a short time, we
decided otherwise."
Henry decided to join the business fulltime, quitting his career as a lawyer and
CPA at the age of 31 in 1972. For Henry,
finding a way to differentiate the company
from others in the industry was important.
"From the beginning, we chose to bring in
what we thought would be a more professional approach to the industry," he said.
"We also wanted to have very striking locations, which is something we continue to
do today."
In the beginning, Waterway was a company of exterior car washes, with its first
location in Kirkwood, Mo. Over time, the
company began to expand, from the St.
Louis area to Kansas City, Mo. In 1999,
they expanded to Denver; in 2008, to
Cleveland; and in 2015, to Chicago. "As we
grew and developed, our locations became
full-service locations in areas that were limited in availability for other competitors,"
Henry said. The transition to full-service
wasn't complete until the early 1990s.
"We knew that the full-service segment
was a harder segment to manage," Henry
said. "And that's the risk. But that's our
competitive advantage today. While it is
hard to manage, we think we're good at
managing it, which again differentiates us
from our competitors."
Henry's son, Bob, who today is
Waterway's President and CEO, agrees

36

about the complexity and differentiation
the full-service model provides.
"The particular mix we have of fullservice washing and high-volume gasoline
plus a convenience store is definitely more
challenging than doing any one of those
three things," Bob said. "It's difficult to be
awesome at something challenging, but
it's also a lot of fun to do it and succeed."
Bob is pretty familiar with the business: he grew up with the business while
his father ran it, and joined the company
himself when he was in his early teens. "I
officially started with Waterway the week
after I turned 14, working at the location
closest to my house so I could ride my bike,"
Bob said. "I started by working the line and
drying, vacuuming and cleaning cars."
Bob continued his part-time career
with Waterway throughout college and
before leaving for graduate school. As he
contemplated what his future might hold,
Waterway was always on his mind. "I kept
coming back to how Waterway was the
one thing I really wanted to do," he said.
"I always loved working at Waterway, and
always enjoyed having such close contact
with my customers. In the full-service car
wash business, you're never more than a
couple feet away from your customer. The
idea of being outside the exit of a car wash,
interacting with thousands of different
people sounded more appealing to me
than sitting at a desk in an office building."

WAT
GAS &

CAR WASH MAGAZINE | WWW.CARWASH.ORG |

FALL 2017


http://WWW.CARWASH.ORG

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Car Wash - Fall 2017

Letter from the ICA
Meet the Board
By the Numbers
Overheard Online
Globetrotting
Waterway Gas & Wash
Rising stars
You've made it... now what?
Kadelyn Burgess, Crew Car Wash
Roll up your sleeves
They say they want a revolution
Lessons pave the way to success
Car Wash Excellence Summit
Carina Spurlock, Mister Car Wash
Shaun Nordgaarden, Waterway Gas & Wash
Automotive technology
... And now I own a car wash
“The How of Car Washing”
Take a Tour: Wash N Roll
Blast from the Past
Marketing Minute
Download It!
Ask Champ
Top Tweets
Advertiser Index
5 Things
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Intro
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - belyband1
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - bellyband2
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - cover1
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - cover2
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 3
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 4
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 5
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 6
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 7
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 8
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 9
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 10
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 11
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 12
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Letter from the ICA
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 14
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Meet the Board
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 16
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 17
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - By the Numbers
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 19
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 20
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 21
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 22
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Overheard Online
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 24
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 25
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Globetrotting
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 27
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 28
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 29
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 30
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 31
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 32
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 33
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 34
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 35
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Waterway Gas & Wash
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 37
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 38
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 39
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 40
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 41
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 42
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Rising stars
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 44
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 45
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 46
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 47
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 48
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 49
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 50
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - You've made it... now what?
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 52
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 53
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 54
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Kadelyn Burgess, Crew Car Wash
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Roll up your sleeves
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 57
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 58
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 59
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 60
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 61
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 62
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 63
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - They say they want a revolution
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 65
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 66
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 67
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 68
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 69
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 70
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 71
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 72
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 73
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 74
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 75
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 76
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Lessons pave the way to success
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 78
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 79
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 80
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Car Wash Excellence Summit
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 82
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 83
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 84
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Carina Spurlock, Mister Car Wash
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 86
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 87
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 88
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Shaun Nordgaarden, Waterway Gas & Wash
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 90
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 91
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Automotive technology
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 93
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 94
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - ... And now I own a car wash
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 96
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 97
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 98
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - “The How of Car Washing”
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Take a Tour: Wash N Roll
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 101
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 102
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 103
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 104
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 105
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 106
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 107
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Blast from the Past
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 109
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 110
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Marketing Minute
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 112
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Download It!
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Ask Champ
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Top Tweets
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 116
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - Advertiser Index
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 118
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 119
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 120
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 121
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - 5 Things
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - cover3
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - cover4
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert1
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert2
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert3
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert4
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert5
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert6
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert7
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert8
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert9
Car Wash - Fall 2017 - outsert10
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