I have just received details that Profiles for Women, a UK based health club chain for women has gone bust (officially in administrative receivership). As I write, these clubs have an `average` paying membership of around 500 members and turnover of around £200,000 per club. Not great, given that many people have put their heart and soul into making the business a success. There are some sorry looking statistics when you delve a little deeper, such as why free membership amounted to 11% of all members. Was the service so bad, that they were having to give it away?
So what does this say about the future prospects of women-only facilities? Not much, I’d say. It just reminds me that the main proposition has to be absolutely right whether that is a women only offer or mixed…good location, innovative service delivered by friendly and attentive staff and a well maintained club. That’s the `core` and then you build from that.
So what will happen now? Well, the clubs will continue to trade while buyers hover and pluck out the parts that may make commercial sense. Most of the 47 staff will keep their jobs, so long as a new buyer is found for all five clubs. Overall, I think it’s difficult time for most the health club industry, especially the independent sector as this latest failure demonstrates.