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Bannatyne Group begins expansion into Northern Ireland with Virgin Active club

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Bannatyne Group is in an acquisition and growth phase and has significant resources to draw upon. This agreement could be the first of several acquisitions north and south of the Irish border
Justin Musgrove, CEO, Bannatyne Group

The Bannatyne Group has cast its net across the Irish Sea after buying Virgin Active's Belfast club.

The acquisition, for an undisclosed sum, is the first step in an investment strategy likely to include further deals in Northern Ireland and also the Republic of Ireland.

“Bannatyne Group is in an acquisition and growth phase and has significant resources to draw upon to fund the right deals,” said Justin Musgrove, the group’s chief executive.

"This agreement could be the first of several acquisitions north and south of the Irish border."

The operator intends to invest £1.2m (US$1.6m, €1.4m) in the Belfast club, including Technogym kit, MyZone and its B:360 wristbands, once the transfer is completed on 8 December.

The club, which has a membership of more than 3,700 people, includes a gym, cycle studio, luxury spa, sauna facilities and a 20-metre swimming pool with children’s pool.

This is the second time this year the two operators have agreed a deal. Bannatyne’s bought Virgin Active Humberston in Lincolnshire in August.

Since its launch in 1996, the Bannatyne Group portfolio has grown to 71 clubs.

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The Bannatyne Group has cast its net across the Irish Sea after buying Virgin Active's Belfast club.
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