Planet Fitness

Planet Fitness’ Surging Expansion Highlights Huge U.S. Economic Trends

Gym chain Planet Fitness continues to surge in popularity in the United States. The secret sauce of the company has been its low-cost gym membership and inviting workout environments. Now, the company is starting to take its show on the road, with an entry into Canada in 2015. But, Planet Fitness’ rise to the top in the highly fragmented gym industry sheds light on two huge trends in the U.S. The first is the growing number of fast food chains, which are packing on the pounds on a nation that is battling with robust levels of obesity. Second, the uprooting of physical retail due to more mobile consumption, as seen hundreds of store closures, continues to afford Planet Fitness access to attractive real estate assets. Brian Sozzi talks with Planet Fitness CEO Chris Rondeau to discuss.

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Planet Fitness Domination Has Only Just Begun

PF-logo-registeredBrian Sozzi of The Street reports:

You won’t find jacked, sweaty bodybuilders pumping iron at Planet Fitness, nor will you find skinny folks sipping drinks from the juice bar. That’s by design, according to Dorvin Lively, CFO at the rapidly growing gym chain.

Planet Fitness was founded by Mike Grondahl in 1992 as a welcoming place to work out at prices more affordable than upscale competitors Lifetime Fitness (LTM_) and Town Sports International (CLUB_). The business attracts people who have never gone to a gym before, benefitting from the movement by the general population toward a healthier, more active lifestyle. The U.S. has 32,000 health clubs, according to industry research firm IHRSA. More than 62.1 million Americans used a health club in 2013. Since 2008, U.S. health club memberships have risen 16%, with growth clocking in at 5.3% in 2013.

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