Thursday, August 29, 2013

News: Xercise4Less expansion backed by BGF investment

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Fast-growing chain, Xercise4Less, has secured £5m investment from the Business Growth Fund (BGF) to support its expansion plans that include a planned new gym in Rotherham.

The Leeds based company has an ambitious five-year plan, which includes the rollout of approximately 100 new gyms nationwide. This will in turn create up to 4,000 new jobs.

Xercise4Less currently operates ten gyms and has agreements signed on 14 sites, which sees the brand take on more market share in Yorkshire, the North East and the South West.

"The People's Gym" is hoping to secure planning permission to convert the former B&Q outlet on Tenter Street in Rotherham into a 31,000 sq ft gym complete with 400 pieces of gym equipment, changing facilities, studio space, a female only section plus a salon and beauty treatment rooms on a mezzanine floor. 199 car parking spaces are also included in the plans.

If approved, it is anticipated that the proposed health and fitness club will provide a total of 40 new jobs both part and full time. In the plans, Xercise4Less said it will enter into measures to secure local training and employment opportunities.

Xercise4Less has been expanding its portfolio by taking on former retail and warehouse space in prominent locations offering advantages to customers over traditional city centre budget gyms such as additional space, more gym equipment and a wider variety of choice and more parking. Recent openings include a £1m gym in Doncaster (pictured) and the company recently signed a deal with Tesco to open state of the art gyms in stores at a number of sites throughout the UK.

Jon Wright, founder and CEO of Xercise4Less, said: "BGF's funding will give us the financial and operational facilities to continue our expansion at a key time for the market.

"The Xercise4Less concept is growing because we believe that a budget gym shouldn't offer a budget experience. Cost remains a major issue for many consumers today but we work hard to ensure our members benefit from many added value services. The facilities we offer and the price at which we offer them, continue to attract a large tranche of new consumers into the market."

The BGF is an independent fund of up to £2.5 billion, backed by five of the UK's main banking groups - Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds, RBS, and Standard Chartered - and working in collaboration with the British Bankers' Association.

Richard Taylor, senior investment manager at BGF, said: "We are delighted to be working with Xercise4Less; it is an exciting brand with a very simple but attractive consumer offering. The company has established a unique model in a high growth sector and the management team, under Jon's guidance, has demonstrated its expertise in rolling out new gyms over the past 18 months and consistently delivering a fantastic customer experience at the same time.

"We have no doubt that they will be capable of growing and managing the business on a much larger scale."

Xercise4Less website

Images: Xercise4Less

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