Fitness First Australia To Launch 24 Hour Operation

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SYDNEY, Australia — Fitness First Australia is set to launch 24/7 operations to help grow its membership.

In an interview with Health Club Management, Greg Oliver, CEO of the brand’s parent company Fitness & Lifestyle Group, explained that turning Fitness First into a 24/7 operation would be an “extremely compelling” proposition for customers.

The move follows a similar switch made by Goodlife Health Clubs, one of Fitness & Lifestyle Group’s other brands, which began operating a 24-hour model in 2014. Since the switch Goodlife has seen its membership increase by 30,000 as a direct result.

“We’ve converted over 50 of the Goodlife clubs already and the rest will follow. We now plan to do the same with Fitness First,” Oliver told Health Club Management.

Australia’s largest fitness organisation, Fitness & Lifestyle Group owns Goodlife Health Clubs, weight-loss and training brand Hypoxi and Australia’s biggest fitness franchise Jetts. Having added Fitness First Australia to its portfolio last September, the company, backed by Private Equity Group Quadrant hopes it could make an attractive float candidate in time.

“The nature of the industry and the growth going forward… will be appealing to institutional investors,” Executive Chairman Chris Hadley told the Financial Review.

In the meantime, aside from extending Fitness First’s opening hours, the group is set to franchise the Hypoxi brand throughout the US.

“We look forward to a strong and aggressive national expansion, and we are excited to bring our unique fitness and weight loss model to new clients and owners across the country,” revealed Jeff Stokes, Vice President of Hypoxi USA.

In addition to the traditional standalone studio model, Hypoxi USA will offer health club owners an in-club studio option modeled after the successful, 75 plus studio network of Australian franchises and corporate stores.

Servicing 650,000 members and with revenue of more than $400 million, Fitness & Lifestyle Group has forged a strong presence in Australia. But when it comes to the firm’s long-term growth strategy both the US and Asia beckon.

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