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Fitness First Australia sells West Australian clubs to Ardent Leisure

Fitness First Australia sells West Australian clubs to Ardent Leisure
August 7, 2014

Fitness First Australia has announced the sale of its eight clubs in Western Australia to Ardent Leisure for $32.5 million.

Ardent will acquire Fitness First clubs in Balga, Cannington, Floreat, Innaloo, Myaree, Brookfield Place (Perth CBD), Murray Street (Perth CBD) and Subiaco – with the clubs to become part of Ardent’s Goodlife Health Club chain when the deal is concluded.

Fitness First Australia Managing Director Pete Manuel explained “our owners accepted an attractive offer for our WA clubs, which is validation of the revitalisation of our brand and the significant investment we have made in our people, our products and our personalised fitness experience.

"The capital raised by this sale means we can speed up our rebrand and do more in our clubs in the eastern states to deliver on our promise of going further for our members, with second-to-none facilities to match."

The deal follows the 2012 sale of six Fitness First clubs in South Australia to Ardent Leisure, a strategic move to consolidate Fitness First’s club portfolio in Brisbane, Sydney, the ACT and Melbourne.

The program of refurbishment and rebrand of 14 clubs in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria has led to positive signs of growth for Fitness First - base membership and retention across the rebranded clubs has improved by an average of 10% against prior year trends.

Manuel added "the sale delivers the perfect opportunity to really accelerate our club refurbishment program with an injection of capital.

"We will increase our number of complete refurbishments from 21 to 58 by March 2015, taking the total new investment under Oaktree’s ownership to $78 million, benefitting our members with innovative brand signatures, arrival areas, new equipment and wet areas. This investment includes new club openings at the landmark Flinders Street club in Melbourne, and the innovative concept club, The Zone in Sydney’s CBD.

"We have absolute clarity about the power of fitness to support our members’ aspirations to access happier, healthier, more enriched lives, both inside the gym and beyond. We have set our focus firmly on building the most motivating, fitness-leading clubs in Australia to support this vision, delivering our fitness philosophy within a culture of care and service."

The transition will see memberships at all of Fitness First’s Western Australian clubs honoured by Goodlife Health Clubs, with members gaining access to another seven Goodlife Health Clubs across the state.

Retention of the majority of the Fitness First personnel in Western Australia was a condition of the sale to Ardent Leisure Group and there is expected to be minimal to no impact of Fitness First employees.

Transfer of the clubs is expected to take place in the next 28 days.

Fitness First Australia retains a portfolio of 71 clubs, with proceeds from the Western Australian sale to be used in the ongoing rebranding of its east coast gyms.

A recently agreed acceleration of Fitness First Australia’s rebranding will see 58 of its clubs rebranded by March of next year.

25th June 2014 - FITNESS FIRST LAUNCHES NEW CHILDREN’S ACTIVITY PROGRAMS

12th May 2014 - ARDENT LEISURE GROWS NINE-MONTH REVENUE 

23rd January 2014 - HOLLYWOOD MAGIC AND AEROBICS HERITAGE UNDERPIN FITNESS FIRST RELAUNCH

12th August 2013 - $130 MILLION GLOBAL INVESTMENT TO BOOST FITNESS FIRST BRAND

1st June 2012 - FITNESS FIRST TO SHED 24 AUSTRALIAN CLUBS

 


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