FIBO 2015: Health club sector M&A activity on the rise
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FIBO 2015: Health club sector M&A activity on the rise

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The health club sector is becoming an increasingly attractive prospect for investors, as evidenced by a significant jump in the number of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) seen over the past year.

There were 19 M&A transactions alone in 2014, compared to an overall total of 24 in the three years previously, according to the European Health & Fitness Market Report 2014.

The report - presented today (8 April) by Karsten Hollasch of Deloitte at the European Health & Fitness Forum (EHFF) in Cologne, Germany - observed an industry that has escaped the doldrums of recession and is fast becoming an attractive prospect thanks to its growth. It noted the majority of activity was being driven by strategic investors and financial investors rather than private individuals, with only one of the 19 M&A transactions being driven by the latter in 2014.

Other key findings from the 150-page report included:

- There is a certain correlation between GDP growth and health club membership increases. This was evidenced by 2014 gym membership growth in Spain, Turkey, Germany and Poland - all of which outstripped the average European gym membership growth rate of 4 per cent

- Despite German-based McFit having the largest membership base (around 1.3 million), Virgin Active remains Europe’s biggest gym chain in terms of revenue by some distance

- Most European club operators expect to grow in 2015, with Polish clubs the most optimistic and Russian clubs the least

Health Club Management will be on hand throughout FIBO 2015, live reporting on the latest developments throughout the show and posting them straight to the Health Club Management website. Head of news Jak Phillips will also be live-tweeting from the event, follow him on Twitter by clicking here.

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The health club sector is becoming an increasingly attractive prospect for investors, as evidenced by a significant jump in the number of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) seen over the past year.
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