ISTOBAL is a Spanish leader company in the design, manufacture and marketing of car wash and car care solutions for the automotive sector. A strong internationalisation strategy has enabled the company to position itself internationally as the second European company in the industry. Strongly committed to innovation and efficient global solutions, ISTOBAL is a worldwide reference present in more than 75 countries.
Founded by Ismael Tomás Alacreu in 1950, ISTOBAL has managed to preserve its essence as a family-owned business -currently in the third generation- while running a multinational corporate group consisting of 10 subsidiaries and 3 manufacturing and assembly plants in Europe and America. At present, international represent 80% of the company’s manufacturing activity.
The group employs more than 800 people at the parent company, the main manufacturing site, and the 10 subsidiaries, and also relies on a worldwide network of car wash distributors that reinforce the company’s foreign presence. The focus on service allows ISTOBAL to provide comprehensive solutions including: design, by an R&D department constantly generating ideas, prototypes and patents; manufacturing and process engineering with a high operational flexibility and the latest technological breakthroughs; and marketing and technical support thanks to a consolidated network of trained sales personnel and technicians.
The development of next-generation, environmentally friendly chemicals and of financing and marketing solutions for its customers complete ISTOBAL’s portfolio of comprehensive services. ISTOBAL is not only a car wash manufacturer. In fact, ISTOBAL is a car wash supplier that can fulfil all the customer´s expectations. All this is done bearing in mind the need to adapt the supply to market demands, and enhancing the end-user experience.
We´re a technology and support driven car wash manufacturer
R&D and technical support as key part of ISTOBAL´s strategy
ISTOBAL considers its R&D team to be key and strategic to the company. Ideas and pioneering technologies are developed by them and turned into solutions; in addition to meeting customers’ needs, they also anticipate future demands in the car wash and car care market.
The research and development department is made up of a group of talented, experienced and creative professionals who contribute to technological progress, as proved by more than 50 patents registered in different countries by the company.
This is achieved in close collaboration with leading technological institutes and universities such as the Polytechnic University of Valencia, the Technological Institute for Metal, Furniture, Wood and Packaging, and with companies from the scientific and technology sector like Siemens.
Along these lines, the creation of the ISTOBAL Professorship stands out as a collaboration framework with the Polytechnic University intended to boost the training of future professionals, research in engineering, and the development of R&D projects.
In the process engineering area, the company applies new technological breakthroughs in manufacturing on an ongoing basis. Thanks to this, ISTOBAL adapts to customers’ circumstances and needs at all times, and ensures delivery with a tight turnaround and at competitive prices.
Leader amongst car wash equipment manufacturers
Another strategic key is the company’s technical support network. Consisting of highly qualified professionals trained in the latest ISTOBAL technologies and products, Technical Service are able to commission and service machines when requested by the client.
The focus on innovation and operational flexibility allow the company to provide comprehensive services tailored to the needs of individual car wash facilities, and to offer the end user a pleasant experience.
To that end, relying on a large worldwide network of distributors and setting up a relevant number of subsidiaries in Europe and America was fundamental. The merger and acquisition policy -intended to liaise with existing companies in strategic foreign markets- was key to the company’s internationalisation.
Likewise, ongoing business growth caused ISTOBAL to implement a global group strategy segregating and differentiating activities in each of its subsidiaries, the parent company seeing to it that the entire holding runs smoothly.