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GLL to invest in technology to improve customer experience

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Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) is reviewing its staffing structures and investing in technology to improve member experience and business efficiency due to continued economic pressure on customer spend and local authority funding.

Following the release of its latest accounts, the charitable social enterprise told Health Club Management that it wanted to ensure it was meeting the demands of its customers, such as reducing queues at peak times and freeing up centre staff to assist users. GLL said it would be "investing in new technology to improve the customer experience and the efficiency" of the business.

Turnover at the charitable social enterprise grew by 9 per cent last year to £246m (US$317.9m, €280.4m), from £226m (US$325.2m, €257.6m) in 2015.

Due to "commercial trading operations" net income was £1.7m (US$2.2m, €1.9m) last year, down from £6.9m (US$8.9m, €7.9m) in 2015.

The 36-page report said that its subsidiary North Country Leisure Limited (NCL) declared a loss of £2.3m (US$3m, €2.6m) in the year while the Tone Group declared a surplus of £278,000 (US$358,800, €316,900).

GLL reported a group margin of 0.8 per cent for the year.

The financial statement said: "The margin is low because of extraordinary events in the year, namely: the acquisitions of Gosling Sports Park, Sutton Sports Village, Fitspace stand alone gyms and the performance of NCL that suffered losses due to early year trading deficits following an asset transfer in Newcastle."

GLL operates more than 300 facilities with over 12,000 workers in the UK.

In excess of 42 million visits were made to its facilities last year. As a result, GLL generated social value of £350m (US$451.7m, €399m) – up from £260m (US$335.6m, €296.4m) in 2015.

Since the GLL Sport Foundation programme was launched in 2008, 10,600 athlete awards have been provided at a cost of £6.1m (US$7.9m, €7m).

The report added: "We will continue to look at innovation and new products within our sector and services to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and accessibility of our offer. This will be increasingly important as we face continued economic pressure on customer spend and local authority funding for public services.

"In response to the significant reduction in public service funding for leisure and cultural services, we will undertake a 2017 review of our cost base and structures."

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Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) is reviewing its staffing structures and investing in technology to improve member experience and the efficiency of its business due to continued economic pressure on customer spend and local authority funding.
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