Edition 1504
08 December 2018
Edition: 1504

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British fund buys Portugal’s leading ‘low-cost’ gym chain

in News · 11-01-2018 14:21:00 · 0 Comments

The Fitness Hut chain, which comprises 31 gyms and turns over more than 30 million euros in Portugal, has been sold to the Viva Gym Group Limited, of the British fund Bridges Ventures.

British fund buys Portugal’s leading ‘low-cost’ gym chain

Bridges Ventures already owns the Viva Gym chain in Spain and was responsible for creating the first chain of gymnasiums in England.
According to Lusa News Agency, the managing director of The Edge Group, which sold the 50 percent of capital it had in Fitness Hut to Bridges Ventures said the British fund has “experience and results” in this sector, and has shown “interest in making an Iberian consolidation of the operation of gyms”.
According to José Luís Pinto Basto (who with Miguel Pais do Amaral spearheads the investment and venture capital holdings that make up The Edge Group), the deal included the sale of the entire capital of Fitness Hut, the 50 percent held by Edge Capital (the private equity holding company of the group) and the remaining 50 percent that was controlled by the management team of the gym-management chain.
Without revealing the value of the sale, due to confidentiality on behalf of the buyer, Pinto Basto said that “it is certainly one of the largest private equity transactions in recent years in Portugal.”
He added that the current management team “will continue to manage the company” having reinvested part of the proceeds from the sale in the holding company that will run the Iberian operation of the British fund’s gyms.
“We left the company in good hands, with the same management team and better financial abilities to continue to grow it and to invest in its international expansion”, added the managing director of The Edge Group.
José Pinto Basto believes the goal of Fitness Hut’s new owners is “to continue to expand in Portugal and Spain”, and revealed that for now, the Viva Gym and Fitness Hut brands will be kept separate in Spain and Portugal, but with common management and synergies.
“But we believe that their intention is then to expand this group beyond the Iberian borders, because they already have experience in other markets, namely in the English market”, he added.
Fitness Hut was born in 2011 by the hands of Edge Capital and the current management team, with an initial investment that allowed the opening of eight gyms in the first two years. The first Fitness Hut gym in Portugal opened in Amoreiras in 2011.
In 2014, the OxyCapital Mezzanine Fund became a partner of Fitness Hut, financing the company with an additional investment of 12 million euros, which allowed the acceleration of chain expansion throughout the country.
Currently, the Fitness Hut chain has 31 gyms in Portugal, with a membership of more than 110,000 and a turnover of over 30 million euros, claiming the leadership of the fitness sector in the country.

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Edition 1504
08 December 2018
Edition: 1504

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

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