Planet Fitness was one of four fitness franchises deemed worthy of a ranking on Franchise Times39 Fast and Serious list of smartestgrowing franchises with staying power Photo courtesy Planet Fitness

Planet Fitness was one of four fitness franchises deemed worthy of a ranking on Franchise Times' Fast and Serious list of smartest-growing franchises with staying power. (Photo courtesy Planet Fitness.)

Four Fitness Clubs Make the Franchise Times Fast and Serious List

Planet Fitness tops the Fast and Serious list put out by Franchise Times. The list, which ranks the smartest-growing franchise companies with staying power, also includes three other fitness franchises. 

Planet Fitness, Newington, New Hampshire, tops Franchise Times' Fast and Serious list of the smartest-growing franchises that have staying power. The list of 40 companies, which includes three other fitness franchises, is featured in the franchising publication's March issue.

The other franchises on the list are Anytime Fitness, Hastings, Minnesota, at No. 3; Title Boxing Club, Ann Arbor, Michigan, at No. 20; and Retro Fitness, Colts Neck, New Jersey, at No. 37.

"Planet Fitness stands on top of our exclusive Fast and Serious ranking with an impressive growth record over three years," said Beth Ewen, editor-in-chief of Franchise Times. "This is the only ranking that considers three years' worth of data to eliminate brands that might soar one year but then fade the next. Planet Fitness leads a strong group of 40 franchises that take a long-term view toward growth."

The list is created using the Franchise Times Top 200+ database of 500 franchise brands ranked by annual sales. Franchise Times created a 10-point proprietary formula, including percentage sales and unit growth over a three-year period.

Planet Fitness, which completed its initial public offering in August 2015, has 1,040 franchised clubs plus 58 corporate clubs. Last week, the company announced record revenue of $330.5 million for 2015, and the company estimates it will record between $355 million and $365 million in 2016 revenue as it plans to add 209 new stores system-wide this year.

Last week, the company's stock price took a dip from $15.61 per share to $13.23 when Ben Axler, the head of Spruce Point Capital Management, called the company a  "glorified equipment reseller" with questionable business strategies and unachievable business goals. To that charge, Planet Fitness CEO Chris Rondeau told Fortune magazine: "As one of the largest and fastest-growing franchisors and operators of fitness centers in the U.S., the business has never been stronger."

The stock has since rebounded, closing at $14.69 on Monday.

Planet Fitness also made the 2016 Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list in January and the Inc. 5000 list last year, ranking No. 3,224.

Anytime Fitness, which was founded in 2002, had 100 percent revenue growth from 2012 to 2014, according to the listing. The company opened its 3,000th club in November. It ranked No. 10 on the 2016 Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list, and it ranked No. 1 on the America's Top Global Franchises for 2015 list by Entrepreneur in June 2015.

Title Boxing Club, which started franchising in 2009, had growth of 342 percent in sales and 102 percent in units between 2012 and 2014, according to the list. The company also made the Inc. 5000 list last year, ranking No. 250 on that list.

Retro Fitness, which was founded in 2004 and now has 148 gyms in 16 states, had a 44 percent increase in sales during the last three years. Retro Fitness also made the 2016 Entrepreneur Franchise 500 list in January, ranking No. 242. 

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