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David Sauers | Co-founder & President | Royal Restrooms Franchise Sales | LLC

Royal Restrooms: Setting the New Standard of Hygiene in the Portable Restroom Industry

World War II, despite being the deadliest war in history, was also a time of amazing innovations. Among computers, jet engines, nuclear power, one of the eccentric inventions was a portable restroom. At that time, it was invented for the ship crew so that they wouldn’t need to go offshore to use the bathroom. Made of wood and metals, those toilets were purely utilitarian and had nothing as compared to modern restrooms.

Although portable restrooms went through a lot of improvement and remodeling over the years, the concerns of comfort, hygiene, and sanitation were still growing. It was the need to address this major concern that led to the inception of Royal Restrooms, a nationwide company, with its headquarters in Savannah, committed to providing high-quality portable restrooms trailers and portable shower trailers.

Royal Restrooms was founded on a hot day in 2004, when David Sauers, faced with a dirty port-a-potty and a potty-training child at a festival in the park, knew there had to be a better solution. David with the help of his good friend and Kappa Alpha fraternity brother, Robert Glisson, put in motion what would later change the entire portable toilet industry.

Royal Restrooms was slow to start. Both David and Robert found it hard to believe that a fully functioning portable bathroom was not accepted over the traditional porta potty. “Change is difficult for people to process, even if it comes with true value. Human nature is to do it as it has always been done. Well, I for one was tired of going to the bathroom like the Romans. Nobody in their wedding dress, much less anybody in today’s times should use a porta potty unless it is absolutely necessary,” expresses David.

And the Journey Continued

As the business grew the two men worked weddings, backyard oyster roasts, and small company events until Hurricane Katrina hit. The natural disaster changed their thinking. Up until then, they had used their restrooms for parties and weddings. They had to rethink their mindset. They were driving into what looked like a war zone. From that moment on, they rethought their purpose. David was deeply moved by what he saw on his trip to Louisiana. They still provided luxury portable restrooms for weddings, parties, sporting events, and non-profit celebrations but they changed their business model and offerings to include disaster relief situations where they could mobilize within hours. The small, portable nature of their mobile restrooms meant the Royal Restrooms fleet could be on the road to a fire, tornado, or other disasters almost immediately.

From the flagship Savannah office, 47 additional offices have sprung up all over the country able to serve any portion of the US.

A Story of Expansion

Royal Restrooms started selling licenses in 2006 and became a franchise in 2008. Unfortunately, the US economy tanked that year and the company failed to sell another office for some time. Royal Restrooms decided to end the efforts of expansion and focus all of its efforts on maintaining its licensed offices. Thankfully, the company did not lose an office during this low time in the US economy.

Royal Restrooms Franchise Sales, LLC was formed in 2016 because several of the office owners had built a very profitable business and were ready to retire or pass on their offices to others. As a franchise, the business is valued more, has a higher likelihood of survival/profitability, and is easier for a lending institution to wrap its minds around it. Since, 2017, it has open six new offices with the seventh coming in September 2021. David says, “We chose our franchisees carefully because we are more like family than a corporation.”

A Conservative Approach

The world is constantly changing but the way you think of bathrooms and showers do not really change all that much unless you think of them in a setting that is not in a permanent structure. And that is what Royal Restrooms did. It introduced fully functioning private stall bathrooms in a trailer.

Royal Restrooms was one of the first to have ADA-approved Handicap restrooms in its fleet and the first to have an ADA shower. Throughout the years, the company has incorporated and adopted a conservative approach to be more conscious of power consumption, paper waste, and low flow water.

For example, water heaters become more efficient and save energy. Royal Restroom incorporates touchless faucets to stop the spread of germs. It uses continuous feed paper towels to cut down on waste, and not blow dryers, as research has found that they spread germs and viruses at an alarming rate.

Talking about the impacts of the pandemic, David mentions that it has had lasting effects on our country, the economy, and our children. Many of these effects we will not see for decades to come. For Royal Restrooms, most people saw the importance of personal hygiene as a way to better health during the pandemic. The company was able to assist with that goal and its business flourished.

Royal Restrooms built sink trailers to help stop the spread of germs. The CDC said that hand washing is the single most important thing to do in the fight against the spread of germs. Thus, it has installed WIFI-enabled TVs on the sides of its sink trailers so that clients can stream information to guests, real-time schedules, maps, or other important details that need to be communicated to them.

Moreover, the company designed and manufactured a sink trailer that features eight handwashing stations, which promotes handwashing. It has been incredibly popular and has been awarded The Innovation and Excellence award by Corporate Live Wire as an important part of fighting the spread of COVID-19.

Royal Restrooms has been very fortunate as a business. Very early on it offered its own Purple Shield Promise because its daily procedures and cleaning practices varied little. It has always considered the personal safety of its employees, clients, and their guest. The company may just rent restrooms and showers, but it truly is marketing so much more.

Constantly Innovating

David believes that Royal’s attention to detail and innovation are its best features. Most people do not expect restrooms to have as much thought behind every little detail. Royal Restroom tries hard to make sure details are not what is on their mind. “I feel like it’s our job for them not to think, because if they do then we have missed something important,” states David.

Besides, the people at Royal Restrooms also consider that it is their job to change the perception of the way people think about the portable restroom industry and make sure they are providing the safest options for clients and guests. By educating their clients on the changes they are making, such as hands-free or motion detected, they are setting the new standard of hygiene in the portable toilet industry.

Promoting a Strong Work Culture

Some of the businesses that Royal Restrooms completed have been happy, blessed events. There are no happier times than a wedding, the joy all involves exude. Nothing is more joyous for a team than a charity event that raises thousands of dollars that will be used for life-saving research or to fund a cause worth believing in. The Royal Restrooms team has been part of the group first to factory explosions. They have cried together at the site of plane crashes. They have traveled through hurricane-raged coastal areas, praying together for those affected by the storm surge.

Without the strong culture that Royal Restrooms promotes from within the hard times would be too difficult to get through. Staff members have learned to lean on each other, not just in the office in which they work, but within the nationwide network. Besides the devastation the team witnesses, the long nights on the road delivering trailers to small businesses that are facing closure due to catastrophic building failures, it comes down to the fact that Royal Restrooms is responsible for a family’s livelihood and that weighs heavily on their shoulders.

Contributing to the Social Causes

When it comes to giving back to the community, Royal Restrooms, since its inception in 2004, has donated over one and a half million dollars in in-kind donations in support of its community in the home office of Savannah alone. Multiply that impact through the over 40 offices nationwide and the contribution is limitless. Its staff also enjoys participating in the causes that are close to their hearts, nationally, such as the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, of which David Sauers recently participated in the Man and Woman of the Year campaign, as well as various local organizations. Royal Restrooms trusts that, through their non-profit partners, their support blesses others and makes an impact in whatever dilemma their neighbors may be facing.

A Roadmap Ahead

Royal Restrooms has separated itself from the competition by always being innovative, offering excellent customer service and value that is unmatched, which is why it is in a business category unto itself. It is due to its community, consistency, and confidence, the company is continuously awarded Best Portable Restrooms Company. Robert Glisson has proven the importance of this time and time again through its flagship office in Savannah.

That being said, in five years, Royal Restrooms strongly believes that there will be a large expansion to the number of its franchises across the country. COVID-19 and the pandemic saw a jump in the interest in personal hygiene and how to keep businesses safe and above reproach, and Royal Restrooms was able to play a part in those safety measures.

Royal Restrooms is currently designing new trailers to meet the evolving demand and popularity of restroom trailers with safety and convenience in mind. By taking these measures, it has been able to explore other avenues of revenue that fit into the events industry. Right now, the company is exploring and testing a new trailer in the Savannah market that could be added to its fleet-wide rental service. It has a completely new trailer design coming out for 2022.

Royal Restrooms believes that the eight-sink trailer will also be of vital importance in the next five years, as city governments, schools, public areas, hospitals, sporting arenas, and even petting zoos are all lining up to give their guests a more sanitary and enjoyable experience.

Testament to Excellence

One of the clients of Royal Restrooms named Suzanne Ward Brinson shares, “I highly recommend Royal Restrooms to any bride on their special day! A week before my wedding, I realized my venue didn’t have adequate restrooms and I went into panic mode. Several friends recommended Royal Restrooms, so I called them and immediately got in touch with them. The restrooms were beautiful and extremely clean. I will be using Royal Restrooms in the future and recommend their company to anyone needing first class restrooms for their event.”