PureGym to acquire European operator Fitness World
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PureGym to acquire European operator Fitness World

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Like PureGym, we are passionate about making fitness more affordable and accessible
– Steen Albrechtslund

PureGym is set to become the second largest fitness operator in Europe, after revealing plans to acquire Danish chain Fitness World.

Fitness World is the largest fitness provider in Denmark and also has operations in Switzerland and Poland.

Founded in 2005, it has grown to become one of Europe’s leading value-based fitness providers, with more than 230 gyms and around 600,000 members. It has increased its market share of the European low-cost market both organically and through the acquisition of Condizione in Poland in 2015 and then Basefit in Switzerland in 2018.

In addition to its international estate of gyms, Fitness World also has its own sports nutrition brand, Functional Nutrition, and a bespoke member fitness app.

In 2018 Fitness World had revenues of £175m and EBITDA of £38m.

The deal will give PureGym significant scale in continental Europe and rapidly accelerate its international expansion, which includes plans for trial sites in the US.

PureGym has opened more than 70 sites since being acquired by funds controlled by Leonard Green & Partners (LGP) in 2017 and currently has 263 sites in the UK.

The combined PureGym/Fitness World group will be trading from more than 500 sites – second only in size to Basic Fit in the European market.

“This transaction brings together two well matched, successful market-leading businesses and the combination creates a powerful platform from which to accelerate growth and deliver on our purpose of getting even more people, more active, more often," said Humphrey Cobbold, CEO of PureGym.

"The acquisition of Fitness World is a transformational deal for PureGym and will support our long-held ambition to become a leading international gym and fitness operator.

"Fitness World is a business we know well and have long admired. The team there have done an outstanding job in building unparalleled leadership in the highly attractive Danish market with exciting growth positions in Switzerland and Poland.

"My management team and I are genuinely excited to welcome Steen and all his colleagues in Denmark, Switzerland and Poland to our ‘fitness family’. We firmly believe that there is a great future ahead for all of us.”

Steen Albrechtslund, CEO of Fitness World, added: “PureGym's decision to invest in Fitness World is testament to the business we have built, which is the overwhelming market leader in Denmark and a growing player in Switzerland and Poland.

"Like PureGym, we are passionate about making fitness more affordable and accessible. We believe that the combined business will create an even more impactful business, enabling us to take our attractive proposition to more people across Europe."

The transaction is expected to be completed in early 2020 subject to standard completion conditions.

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PureGym is set to become the second largest fitness operator in Europe, after revealing plans to acquire Danish chain Fitness World.
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