Emerging Technology

Richard Branson’s Virgin Group to launch gym business in Australia

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Virgin Group says one of its most successful global businesses, Virgin Active Health Clubs, is coming to Australia.

Virgin Group says one of its most successful global businesses, Virgin Active Health Clubs, is coming to Australia.

The first club will open in Frenchs Forest, Sydney, in December.

Already a major player in health and fitness in Britain, Italy, Spain and South Africa, Virgin Active has made a significant impact on the industry since its inception in 1999. It is now one of the largest health club businesses in the world, with over 170 clubs and more than 900,000 members. In 2007, the company enjoyed its eighth continuous year of growth, with reported revenues of $658 million and tax-paid profit of $152 million during the calendar year.

“From machine waiting times and intimidating environments to high fees and poor customer service, consumer dissatisfaction with the current gym offerings is clear,” says Mark Blackman, MD of Virgin Active Australia.

“Virgin Active will redefine the gym experience in Australia with world class facilities, a friendly, welcoming environment and that great value for money and customer service that people have come to expect from Virgin.”

Matthew Bucknall, global CEO, Virgin Active adds: “With a proven formula that has seen rapid growth and expansion overseas over the last nine years, we believe that the Australian market is ripe for the new, holistic approach to health and fitness that Virgin Active offers.”

Virgin Active’s second Australian gym, on Bourke St, Melbourne, will open in the first quarter of 2009.

Richard Branson says he is thrilled to bring one of his favourite Virgin businesses to Australia. “The Virgin brand is already well known and loved by Australians and I know people will enjoy getting fit and active the Virgin way. Everyone knows the importance of good health and at Virgin Active we will help people achieve their goals and ensure they have a little bit of fun along the way.”

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