Total year end members were at 578,000, a decrease of 27.2% versus prior year (2019: 794,000) due to prolonged periods of closure; average member numbers fell by 11.1% to 708,000 (2019: 796,000). Higher levels of membership retention have been seen during the current lockdown versus previous closure periods; as at 28 February 2021 membership level was 547,000 (31 December 2020: 578,000). 97% of current members say they expect to return to the gym as soon as possible, with 75% stating that fitness will be more important to them than it was pre-COVID. Gyms in England are expected to re-open on 12 April 2021 with gyms in Scotland re-opening 26 April 2021.
In 2020, eight new gyms opened increasing the total estate to 183 at December 2020. Three new sites are planned to open in April and one in May, with an additional four starting on-site imminently. In addition, The Gym’s growing pipeline has a further six leases exchanged with several more in advanced negotiations
Richard Darwin, CEO of The Gym Group, commented: “During 2020 we demonstrated the resilience of our business and its culture even in the most challenging of times. By freezing subscriptions when closed and by providing an excellent COVID-secure environment in our gyms when open, we have retained most of our members; by supporting colleagues with topped-up furlough pay, honest communications and a comprehensive wellbeing plan we have high levels of staff retention and engagement; and by managing cash carefully we will emerge from the crisis with manageable levels of debt. We are ready to start rebuilding our memberships levels and growing our estate from 12 April, extending affordable fitness at a time when health and fitness has never been more important.”
Source: The Gym Group plc
Picture: The Gym Group plc