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UPDATE


INTERNATIONAL IN BRIEF


Just Fit heads for MediaPark


German operator Just Fit has signed a deal to take over Cologne’s top fitness location, situated in the city’s MediaPark, this year. Te site will be redeveloped into a


premium, 4,500sq m club set over four floors, to open in September. Facilities will include a swimming pool, five saunas, a Technogym-equipped gym and three group exercise studios. “Te new fitness club in Cologne’s


MediaPark will be our flagship,” says Just Fit founder Frank Böhme. In line with the group’s ethos


of affordable fitness, monthly membership of the club – including free parking – will be offered for €49.90 for a limited period.


budget club in Mexico New club concept for MPSCM


US-based Millennium Partners Sports Club Management (MPSCM) has added a seventh club to its estate. MPSCM is known primarily as an


operator of large-scale clubs in major cities, but this new facility is located in Chestnut Hill, just outside Boston, and measures 3,065sq m. Te club is the first to fall under the


company’s new ‘Jewel Box’ umbrella – a new concept that draws on technology and state-of-the-art architecture to deliver “access to the unique gems our clubs have consistently provided, presented in a way that the fitness industry has not yet seen,” according to MPSCM CEO Smaiyra Million.


FFME to invest US$150m


Fitness First Middle East has announced plans to inject US$150m into its growth through fresh equity and internal accruals over a three-year period. Since its acquisition by the Landmark


Group, Fitness First has added 22 new clubs to its regional network. In 2012, the fitness chain saw a 33 per cent increase in membership across its clubs and a 30 per cent growth in sales compared to the same period in 2012. Plans are in place to roll out more


clubs in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and Turkey during 2013. Te brand is also exploring a new sub-franchising model.


16


FITLane sells 35 per cent equity stake “The successful and rapid development


French health club operator FITLane, the market leader in the Cote d’Azur, has sold a 35 per cent equity stake in the business to Naxicap, a French private equity company (and a subsidiary of Natixis) for a reported €3.4m. FITLane’s president Hans Peter


Franklin remains the majority stakeholder, but this additional financial backing will allow the brand to expand further and more rapidly: plans are for another five clubs on the Cote d’Azur over the next couple of years, taking the chain to 12 sites.


Read Health Club Management online at healthclubmanagement.co.uk/digital


of FITLane to date, as well as the clear strategy put in place by Hans Peter Franklin and his team, was what attracted us to this project. We view our role as an accelerator of the brand’s development. There are already projects for a number of new clubs in the pipeline,” says Naxicap’s Thomas Barrochin. FITLane is also due to open its seventh


facility this month in the heart of Nice. Having reached its pre-sale target of 1,000 members, the 100sq m club is ultimately expected to cater for 3,000 members.


March 2013 © Cybertrek 2013


NEWS Bonga Gym opens fourth site


Bonga Gym – the premium low-cost operation in Mexico, which launched its first site in January 2011 – opened its fourth club in December 2012. Located in Mexico City, the 1,500sq m facility is said to be the largest budget


club in the country. It offers a Life Fitness-equipped gym, a range of group exercise classes, a lounge with WiFi and vending machines, and shower/locker areas. The previous three sites were kitted out by Matrix. Monthly fees at Bonga Gyms sites start


at 399 Mexican pesos (£20), based on an upfront annual payment. Although it’s billed as a ‘self-service’ offering, a gym floor instructor is on-site during certain hours, with PT also available at an additional cost. With a stated aim of being market leader


CrossFit ‘club in club’ concept for SATS Bonga Gym La Raza is said to be the largest


Scandinavian market leader SATS has launched a CrossFit ‘club in club’ concept at an existing facility – Regeringsgatan in Stockholm, Sweden. The 300sq m ‘box’ has been created as a


separate facility on-site, designed to attract those who want to try out CrossFit but who still want access to a full-service offering. It currently runs around 40 classes a week, with more planned to meet demand. “We’ve watched the CrossFit trend grow


for the past couple of years,” says Daniel Almgren, Nordic product manager for SATS. “With our level of resources, we believe we can lift CrossFit to a new level.” SATS now plans to roll the concept out to other sites in its estate.


in the budget sector, Bonga Gyms’ mission is, through its affordable pricing, to help address the soaring levels of overweight and obesity in Mexico, encouraging people to improve their quality of life via sports and healthy nutritional habits. The operator is currently looking for a further two locations.


Te new CrossFit facility consists of a 300sq m ‘box’ within the Stockholm club


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