Burges Salmon advises Bridges Fund Management Ltd on its investment in énergie Fitness

The Corporate team at Burges Salmon has advised specialist private markets investor Bridges Fund Management Ltd on its acquisition of a majority stake in énergie Fitness, the leading low-cost gym franchise business

06 September 2019

The investment from Bridges will help support the company’s growth plan and allow it to continue broadening access to quality health and fitness facilities. Bridges has significant experience in the low-cost gym sector, having introduced the concept to the UK in 2007, partnering with John Treharne to launch The Gym Group. Since then Bridges has also successfully invested in Impact Fitness, a Planet Fitness franchise in the US, and Viva Gym Group, the leading low-cost chain in Spain and Portugal.

énergie Fitness is a leading fitness and wellness club brand, with over 100 sites across the UK and Ireland, addressing a gap in the market for small-box format gyms in catchment areas with smaller populations and thereby providing local access to low-cost gyms. Its franchise model also fosters a greater emphasis on customer service, with gym owners encouraged to interact with members and get involved in their local community.

In line with Bridges’ ‘Healthier Lives’ impact theme, it will support énergie to expand into more underserved areas and strengthen its member proposition, so it can drive better health outcomes for its users.

Bridges is partnering with an experienced management team led by CEO Neil King, while founder Jan Spaticchia will remain with the business as a non-executive director. CEO Philip Newborough, who has led all Bridges’ low-cost gym investments, will join the énergie board, along with investment manager Alison Price. Mark Heappey, who also chairs Viva Gym Group, is joining the business as chair and Ivan Schofield will also be joining the board as a non-executive director.

The multi-disciplinary Burges Salmon team was led by Head of Corporate Richard Spink, with corporate assistance from Tim Roberts, Alex Lloyd, Doug Streatfield James and Martin Davidson; Rachael Ruane on banking; Sarah Lane and Sam Moore on tax; Rick Read and Will Hall on real estate; Laura Allum on share schemes, Rich Hugo and Amanda Leiu on commercial, and Hannah Malone on employment.

Richard comments: “We are very pleased to have advised Bridges on this significant investment. We look forward to seeing Neil and the team at énergie develop the business with support from Bridges and continue to bring gym access and related health benefits to areas that are currently underserved.”

Alison Price, investment manager at Bridges, concludes: “This acquisition is an exciting time for our business, and we are glad to have had the expertise and service of the Burges Salmon team by our side during this complex transaction.”

Key contact

Richard Spink

Richard Spink Partner

  • Head of Corporate
  • Mergers and Acquisitions
  • Private Equity

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