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KX Pilates founder steps back with appointment of new Chief Executive

KX Pilates founder steps back with appointment of new Chief Executive
January 7, 2019

KX Pilates founder Aaron Smith has stepped down from his position as Chief Executive, with Selina Bridge, the former General Manager of Curves Oceania, taking  on the role.

Explaining that he will now take on a more directional role with the business, Smith, founded the business eight years ago and has built the fitness franchise to achieve an annual revenue for 2017/18 of $20 million, told Inside Franchise Business that he will now take on a more directional role with the business.

Smith (pictured above) advised “my goal was to take the business to 50 studios, and we reached that milestone a couple of months ago and our first international. We’ve been growing quite substantially and I just needed to press pause. The business needs someone who can manage and grow the current network to 150 studios in Australia.

“I could keep going forever but I have a passion for people, a passion for innovation. I’ve got a classic enterpreneur’s mindset. I’m still passionate about the company and the founder’s role, I will get to every state every quarter, spreading the founder’s ‘fairy dust’."

Commenting on her new position, Bridge advised “I look forward to working with the KX Pilates team to further grow the business, leveraging the great work that Aaron and his team have done to build an extraordinarily strong and reputable fitness brand.

“I am passionate about the health and fitness industry and see a wealth of opportunity for the KX brand to continue its expansion across Australia and overseas.”

Smith told Inside Franchise Business the time to move on was right for him and the business and is relaxed about handing over the reins, adding “I’ve always found it quite easy to release control and empower people in skill sets where they are better than me. I’ve always believed in hiring people more skilled than you.

“Yes, I’m running a 50-studio business but I’m not a good manager, It’s not something I love.

“I’m fairly good at leading. I believe if you spend more time in your strengths, you’ll be more successful.”

The move gives Smith the opportunity to return to the roots of the business, running occasional specialty classes.

It will also allow him to focus on the innovations he’s been working on behind the scenes as the business has grown, initiatives designed to establish a competitive edge through complementary branded projects.

Customised and branded wholesale Pilates equipment is one initiative that is getting close to completion - customising generic machinery has been the first step, but Smith has just finished the design of a piece of equipment from scratch.

“There’s a lot of competition in fitness and Pilates, so apart from the brand and the experience, it’s exactly the same. What experience are we delivering, what can we offer that no other brand is offering, and what can we do to strengthen our IP?”

Smith views equipment and education as valuable tools to consolidate the brand so he expects to launch a basics Pilates program that can be offered externally while keeping the specifics of the KX Pilates method exclusive to the studios.

Related Articles

12th September 2018 - KX Pilates’ opens 50th franchise and first international studio

17th April 2018 - KX Pilates founder describes eight years of business growth

14th April 2018 - Women drive global growth of boutique fitness studios

12th March 2018 - Australian fitness industry revenues to grow to $2.4 billion by 2022/23

21st July 2017 - KX Pilates makes a stand on sham contracting

24th March 2016 - Activity entrepreneurs share their business secrets

28th September 2014 - KX Pilates expands with Sydney studio opening

27th February 2014 - KX Pilates franchises its high performance Pilates training


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