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Evolution Wellness expands in fast growing south east Asian fitness market

Evolution Wellness expands in fast growing south east Asian fitness market
September 16, 2019

Offering two major brands - Fitness First and Celebrity Fitness - that target key market segments, Evolution Wellness has grown over the past two years to become the largest fitness operator in south east Asia, with over 160 clubs across six countries, more than 375,000 members and over 6,000 staff members.

With members in Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, Hong Kong and Thailand, using its clubs over 25 million times a year, the growth has been driven by the merger of Fitness First and Celebrity Fitness to become Evolution Wellness in 2017.

Further growth saw the group buy the Bali-based Fivelements luxury retreat resort in June 2018, then expanding the Fivelements brand with the opening of a luxury yoga studio in Hong Kong in July this year.

In addition, the group acquired Malaysian club group Chi Fitness - with 13 branches - in October last year while also unveiling the first GoFit club in Malaysia in August.

Now paying particular attention to the fast-growing market in Thailand, Mark Buchanan (pictured), who took on the role of Managing Director at Evolution Wellness in March this year, recently told the Bangkok Post “our business expansion in Thailand will focus on the three main brands - Fitness First, Celebrity Fitness and GoFit.

“Three more branches of Fitness First will be added by the end of this year, amounting to a total of 34 branches (while) Celebrity Fitness will also open two branches at the same time, (then) in 2020, our latest brand GoFit will be launched for the first time in Thailand to fulfil the brand portfolio to respond better to the needs of customers in each group according to their lifestyle.”

While Fitness First will be the flagship brand for Evolution Wellness in Thailand, each of the group’s offerings will be aimed at different target audiences, with Fitness First aimed at the 25 to 40 year old demographic and Celebrity Fitness targeting those aged 21 to 35 years who prefer joining fitness classes. With these two brands offering full-service clubs, with cardio and weight-training equipment, class studios and professional trainers, GoFit will target the ‘digitally-oriented fast-paced population’ relying on fitness evaluation technology and class participation.

Commenting on specific performance in Thailand, Buchanan added “Fitness First has been growing well, with an increase of 7% in revenue, 11% profit made from personal trainer service, as well as 1.5% increase in amount of members.

“We aim for 2020 to have an increase of 11% in revenue, 13% in personal trainer service, as well as setting the service frequency goal to 8.6 million times and the amount of members going up to 89,000 people.”

In the immediate future, Celebrity Fitness plans to open two branches in November 2019 in strategic locations in the suburbs of Samyan Mitrtown and Singha Estate, with an investment of 120 million baht (US$3.9 million).

Looking forward, Buchanan concluded “what’s interesting is that it’s not just about business expansion but also giving the ultimate fitness experience to all members with our variety of brands.

“Special benefits are given for members to use a diversity of brands, which will bring about fun, enjoyment and refreshing experience that will also give us a strong point and advantage in business.”

Related Articles

7th August 2019 - Event series to ‘connect Asia’s fitness industry’

13th February 2019 - Inaugural Singapore Fit Summit heralds evolution of Asian fitness business network

17th January 2019 - New body to represent Singapore’s fitness industry

5th December 2018 - Evolution Wellness adds CHi Fitness to its portfolio

28th July 2018 - Evolution Wellness acquires Fivelements health resorts

6th June 2018 - IHRSA Report shows 22 million members at fitness clubs across key Asia-Pacific markets

19th May 2018 - South East Asia’s Celebrity Fitness introduces special exercise classes through Ramadan

7th September 2017 - Evolution Wellness completes first Celebrity Fitness rebrand under Fitness First Asia banner

10th August 2017 - Fitness First Asia partners with Wexer to deliver new digital membership

23rd February 2017 - Asian fitness club merger sees creation of Evolution Wellness

29th September 2016 - Quadrant expands wellness empire with acquisition of Fitness First Australia

8th April 2016 - Owners look at sale of Fitness First’s global operations

14th July 2014 - Singapore fitness clubs hit by complaints

10th July 2012 - New openings mark ‘aggressive expansion’ by Celebrity Fitness


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