Bally to Sell 39 Clubs to Blast Fitness
Wednesday, April 11, 2012
Club Industry magazine yesterday reported an announcement from Bally Total Fitness Holding Corp., Chicago, stating it has entered into an agreement with Blast Fitness Acquisition LLC, an affiliate of Blast Fitness Group LLC, Auburndale, MA, in which Bally will sell 39 clubs to Blast Fitness.
Bally spokesperson Larry Larsen declined to disclose the terms of the deal, which includes a cash consideration and an assumption of certain liabilities by Blast. The deal is expected to be completed by May 1.
Blast, a club chain that offers memberships as low as $10 a month, will acquire Bally clubs in Boston (three); Buffalo, NY (one); Charlotte, NC (two); Fresno, CA (five); Milwaukee (four); Providence, RI (one); and St. Louis (two), plus three in Connecticut and all 18 in Texas, consisting of nine in Houston, five in Dallas-Fort Worth and four in San Antonio.
The deal comes five months after the LA Fitness acquisition of 171 Bally clubs last November. Once the Blast deal is finalized, Bally will have about 60 clubs remaining, Larsen says.
Blast currently has 15 clubs open in Illinois, Massachusetts, Minnesota and Rhode Island, plus four more clubs in Illinois that are expected to open soon, according to its website. Ten of the clubs, including all six Massachusetts clubs, the one Rhode Island club and three of the four Minnesota clubs, direct prospects to a page with a Work Out World logo.
In addition to the $10-a-month option, Blast members can purchase a $19.99-a-month membership. Services offered by Blast include a women-only area
, personal training, babysitting, group exercise classes and unlimited tanning.
Blast will honor all Bally memberships in the markets in which Blast acquired clubs. Transferred members will have membership privileges at the remaining Bally clubs in other markets.
After the completion of the deal, Bally will have 23 clubs in the New York City area, six in the San Francisco area and seven in the Denver area. Houston was one of Bally's other core markets prior to the Blast deal.
"We felt that our efforts would be better spent in other markets where we have a very big presence," Larsen says.
Larsen declined to comment specifically on the future of Bally.
"We have a management that is committed to the business and doing what's best for it," Larsen says. "They'll continue to review all the opportunities and make decisions accordingly."
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