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Esporta could sell struggling European clubs

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Neil Gillis, chief executive of Esporta, has said he would sell the group’s European health and fitness clubs if he got the right price for them.

“We have struggled in Europe and have no plans to expand there,” he told Health Club Management magazine.

“What we’ll do is manage what we’ve got and if we can sell the business and get a good price, we will. If we can’t sell it, we’ll run it, but manage it better. The only way to do that is to employ local people who know the market, rather than running it like a colonial business.”

The group has two UK sites set to open later this year, in Taunton and Stafford and another due to open next year, in Guildford and is looking for further opportunities. “We are looking at some UK sites,” said Gillis, “big parcels of land around major towns for new-build racquets sites – but only maybe six or seven in the next two years and only large, family-orientated racquets clubs.” For the full interview see Health Club Management, October 2003, p30

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Neil Gillis, chief executive of Esporta, has said he would sell the group’s European health and fitness clubs if he got the right price for them.
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